How many times have you seen perfectly good threads on tmp of the type "who is the best.............?" being ruined by contributions like "my best mate dave at Smalltown Silver Prize Band is an excellent cornet player" or "young Tommy will be a great player when he's older". Excellent although they may be, how many of them can genuinely be mentioned in the same sentence as Maurice Murphy, Jim Shepherd, Derek Garside, Phillip McCann, Roger Webster.............? Is it possible to have one of these debates without it becoming parochial? Why can't people just understand the question and give genuine answers when it comes to great brass band players. The Pele / Maradona debate never seems to end up with "my mate Andy that plays five-a-sides on a Monday night and scores fifteen goals every week". Why not? Because everybody knows that Pele and Maradona were actually miles better than him. It's the same in bands. There are genuine legends out there, many of whom are still playing, that have proved for generations that they are a class above the rest. So, why don't we start again with the real legends of the brass band movement. No nominating your best mate because he's "quite a good player". No nominating Wynton Marsalis / Chuck Mangione / Louis Armstrong / Christian Lindberg / Buddy Rich etc because none of them have ever made a big impact as performers in our movement. To be even worthy of a mention, a legend should have performed with bands at the highest level for a number of years and had the respect of his or her peers during that time. I'll start the ball rolling with the best players I've ever heard on each of our instruments. Soprano - Alan Wycherley from the late 70's to early/mid 90's. He made it all sound ridiculously easy and had a sound to die for. Cornet - Phillip McCann during the Black Dyke years. See explanation for soprano choice. Flugel - Although there were good players in the past like David Pogson and Stan Lippeatt, the players today are pushed much harder and are generally better as a result. Iwan Williams at YBS has consistently been the best of them over recent years. Horn - Sandy Smith is the most complete horn player ever. Another one with a glorious sound but technically and musically brilliant too. Euphonium - Lyndon Baglin. Simply the most commanding brass band player I've ever heard. Trombone - More difficult one this, but Nick Hudson just gets my vote. Great sound and musicianship. Wonderful soloist. Tuba - Another difficult one as the players and instruments of today are so much better than in the past. Steve Sykes during the Grimethorpe years takes a bit of beating though. Percussion - Not my specialist subject, but Simone Rebello has probably made a bigger impact in bands than anyone else. I'm sure everyone will have their own ideas and there will some that reduce it to their mates just to try and be smart, but try and keep it sensible for once. Lalo. PS Maradona gets my vote on the other debate.