Bah Humbug - Move em On

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by P_S_Price, Dec 12, 2011.

  1. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Yet again this year Rochdale Cit Band have been "Re-located" due to complaints to shopping centre management from Shopkeepers in the Middleton Shopping centre (Any one familiar with the place will know that it is exactly a commercial hotbed).

    The usual stuff : Cant hear, Footfall, Obstruction.

    One clothes shop alleged that everytime we started to play their shop emptied. We aren't that bad Honest.

    Anybody else get this or is it just us (maybe we are that bad)?
  2. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    did you have permission to play there? I don't know the laws these days, but are you suppose to pay to have a licence to play in shopping centres? If so take it up with the council
  3. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Yes we had permission (from the centre management). We were relocated to a different part of the centre.

    We've stopped doing Rochdale exchange this year because of the Moaning Minnies that reside within.

    The response from the general public is, I think, good; but from certain shops/travel agencies? well definitely Bah Humbug.
  4. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    I don't think I've ever been asked to move on, but playing inside a shopping centre compared to outside is much different sound wise. I can understand from the shops point of view.
  5. The Wherryman

    The Wherryman Active Member

    I don't know the Middleton Shopping Centre or the band, so my comments aren't directed at either.

    I have taken part in many such events outside shops, so I am not against the idea in principle. However, from the comments made by the OP, it does seem that there has been a real or perceived detrimental effect on certain businesses, so is it any wonder they complain?

    For example, if I was sitting in a travel agent's premises, arranging my very expensive summer holiday, I certainly wouldn't want loud music of any genre causing any distraction to the proceedings, or making it difficult to carry on a discussion about destinations, accomodation, flights etc. etc.

    I don't think it's necessarily a 'bah humbug' mentality. Times are difficult all round at the moment and businesses are bound to react against anything that might take dosh away from them.

    If I was a business person and felt that customers were either being deterred from coming to my shop, or were spending less time in it, because of an avoidable circumstance, I would try my best to avoid that circumstance, whether it be a brass band, classical quartet or rock band playing outside.

    Is there any 'musak' being played in the shops? Hearing two completely different tunes being play simultaneously is akin to torture. A band I was with used to play outside a large department store, and they would turn off their 'musak' during our stint.

    If the intention of the band's performances is to attract donations, the complainers might, just might, consider giving a donation, just for the band NOT to play :icon_mrgreen:
  6. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    A few years ago I organised a trombone group to perform in the centre of Oxford, but got moved on by... the local SA! We'd plonked ourselves in their reserved spot, apparently, and they were not interested in negotiating. They gave us a very unfriendly approach.
  7. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Customers Detracted? Possibly, but we dont play continuously, and we dont play 2 verses either to save lips on a 5 - 6 hour stint.

    I would venture to say that in many instances the Band, whilst not actually attracting people to the centre, does help with some people to stay.

    Yes we collect (As do all SA bands at this time), but we view our main reason to be there as spreading the reason for the season. TBH when we are out playing without collecting we frequently find that people give money anyway without being asked or our having a tin; but that might just be an SA thing.
  8. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    It was only on saturday I was in town doing some shopping and all of a sudden I heard a band playing carols. You probably don't realise it when your playing yourself, it is fairly loud!
  9. euphojim

    euphojim Member

    Having played carols outside shops, in shopping centres and inside larger shops with many bands and small groups over even more years, I do not ever recall us being asked to move. In fact the general response from local businesses has been very much the opposite, even when we have played inside supermarkets, garden centres, etc. Many have even provided band members with teas and coffees when it has been particularly cold (I don't think they did it just to get us to shut up for five minutes). That said, it is important to liaise closely with local businesses when sorting out appropriate spots (and the Council if it is in a public place) and to take a suitable number of players for the location.
  10. trumpetmike

    trumpetmike Active Member

    Had a wonderful moment playing in front of the Guildhall in Guildford - one local shop keeper complained and threatened to get the police to move us on. The staff of the Guildhall came out (along with the Mayor, who happened to be in there at the time) and said that we were there as part of their performance season, so were an official part of the town's Christmas celebrations. The shop keeper had no choice but to leave it alone.
    We were not part of the official celebrations, but we were later told that the Guildhall staff preferred us to the muzak that the local shops blasted out - this was their chance for a small portion of revenge, lol

    (and yes, the Mayor donated to our charity collection)
  11. trumpetmike

    trumpetmike Active Member

    Sorry - double post
  12. 4thmandown

    4thmandown Member

    I think the biggest insult is when someone complains about the "noise". Philistines!

    We had an instance a few years ago when the manager of a now defunct clothing outlet in Solihull complained about the "noise". What was more insulting was that he or she didn't have the guts to speak to the band himself, but rather summon the shopping precinct's Security Guard/Stasi and get them to do the dirty work.

    Solution. I visited said outlet later in the week, dropped a bag of humbugs on the counter with "Compliments of the Season from The Shirley Band" on an outsize gift tag.

    Said outlet went bust the following summer.
  13. The Wherryman

    The Wherryman Active Member

    Hmmmmm...400 years ago the Witchfinder General would have got you!!!
  14. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Exactly what happened to us on Saturday, but I wouldnt call the staff who moved us Stasi - In fact the Young chap was embarrassed and appologetic and helped us move the stuff, using the override on the lift etc etc.

    Its the lack of courage (respect?) of the shop managers that gets you.

    I wrote to the head office of one particular Bah Humbug travel agency who actually sponsored a band (A Good thing) whilst at the same moving us on, to ask them why it was only SA bands they objected to.

    I got the usual drivel back but no apology.
  15. 4thmandown

    4thmandown Member

    Perhaps I should disclose that (according to my granny) I'm related to one of the Pendle Witches...
  16. Lofty Snr

    Lofty Snr Member

    Ha Ha Dave, That might be because it's TROMBONES ! A nice TUBA quartet might have got a more friendly response. (I can let you have the name of the SA's big chief in the UK if you want to complain, but I warn you, he's a Scott, so don't expect any financial recompence !
  17. Lofty Snr

    Lofty Snr Member

    Looking at your avatar you could do with a bit of witchcraft pal.
  18. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    That Might be one of Your Rellies houses then that the water board has just uncovered with a cat walled up in it. ;)

    Maybe you can claim ownership of the dead cat? wit the current financial climate it might be good for bouncing!
  19. euphymike

    euphymike Member

    Enfield band do not have a problem in Enfield town square with Shoppers and Pearson store actively encourage the gig and look after the band when there. However, the downside is that over the last couple of years the band has to compete with a mobile burger stall in front of it. Not only the smell of spent diesel from the generator but also the smell hanging in the air of Grease!!!!! I smell like a quarter pounder by the time I get home!
    And here's me thinking northerners like brass bands. They must still be a novelty in London then?
  20. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Hmmm Burger - Gaaahhhh! *Drools like Homer Simpson*

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