Brass bands as an English icon

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Hornblower RN, Jul 11, 2007.

  1. Hornblower RN

    Hornblower RN Member

    Personally I believe it should be a British Icon ....check it out here ....I made a comment a couple of months and it's taken this long to be accepted. We could certainly do with highlighting the Brass Band movement......over to you.
  2. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    Hmmm, did Brass Bands originate in England though??
  3. beccawheeze2

    beccawheeze2 Member

    Does it matter? The best brass bands are all from the UK. American friends in the brass band movement look to the traditions of our bands for guidance.
    Anything that can improve our image has got to be good.
  4. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    Whilst I would strongly contest your statement that "all" the best bands are from the UK, the biggest danger I would see in this is that to be regarded as an "icon" could simply underline the view of brass bands as being something set in stone and belonging to another era.

    There are various definitions of the term to be found, but in the same way that "Brassed off" raised the profile of banding, but didn't necessarily put across the modern image that we would want to project, so banding as an icon could reinforce all the old stereotypes.
  5. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    To paraphrase the Icon site...."used to play arrangments of classical play pop songs..." etc ;)
  6. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    I see where we're all coming from on this, and to an extent I agree. FWIW I think the write up could have been a little less rosy tinted about our contribution...

    Anyway...what the heck, after all, as they say: there's no such thing as bad publicity.

  7. lynchie

    lynchie Active Member

    Pop music to Star Wars, what a varied repertoire! Nothing like a bit of an ill-informed stereotype to promote the genre!
  8. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Just to play Devil's advocate here for a minute.....take a look as the typical playlist for brass band CDs that are made by Bands outside of the top 6.....what do you find? Film music and pop songs.....

    (I know that you programme what your audiences want to hear and what will sell you CDs - I even make a point of it elsewhere - but surely 'just' doing a CD containing material like this simply reinforces the stereotype?)
  9. lynchie

    lynchie Active Member

    That's true, it's something I'm always trying to convince people against, usually to be called a bit grumpy. The other problem being of course that most bands tend to play the same film music/pop songs as eachother. I honestly never want to hear the theme music from Harry Potter or Pirates of the Carribean ever again!

    But still, there are some shining lights out there, who will hopefully begin to influence the masses!
  10. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member


    I'm a big fan of taking minor risks with a bit of the stuff that we play / record. By all means programme your concerts and CDs to your audience - they're the ones that are paying you for them after all - but that doesn't mean you can't throw one or two things that are a bit off the wall in there....and the more bands that do it, the more likely it is that people will get to know the extended repertoire and (hopefully) get to like it.

    We just did a similar thing with Glossop Old and their CD - it contains some 'old favourites' (for want of a better phrase - sorry Jon ;) ) plus some other material that's less often played, but then it contains a brand new Soprano Solo off Peter Meechan - "These Mist Covered Mountains" that was commissioned especially for the CD. Although I know that things like this cost money, they can give you a market advantage, plus it's enriching there repertiore and it's giving the audience exposure to new and exciting music.

    I know there are a lot of Bands out there doing similar things - but the more the merrier IMHO to help dispel the myths of what hides on the library shelves....but having said that, never ignore the older and 'popular' stuff....just use it wisely.
  11. lynchie

    lynchie Active Member

    I agree entirely with the above... meh, so much for debate!