Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Stracathro, Jul 9, 2012.
Hear Hear (or is it here here? - I never know!)
Now the dust has settled slightly I thought I'd give my perspective on the bands participation in the OOC last Friday. It was never primarily about a brief mention on the telly but more the chance to take part in a once in a lifetime opportunity and to contribute to the music, and the spectacle, in a stadium of 80,000 people in a theatrical extravaganza involving nearly 10,000 performers. It was obvious from Danny Boyle's first meeting with the band in March and my first meeting about three weeks after that with Rick Smith and some of the senior creative team that the band would be a small cog in a huge musical and visual wheel. Remember the Industrial Revolution section was entitled in the programme "Pandemonium" !
In was privileged enough to score the band parts for "And I Will Kiss" ( check out the you tube video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hM0fiegRbTg - band enters at 10'56'' and again play a prominent part in the concluding "Poppies" section ) and, perhaps most importantly of all, I was entrusted to score, and the band to record the verse of the Olympic Anthem, something of which we are all very proud. Rick was bowled over by the band at the recording session at Abbey Road - as we were to have the chance to record in the iconic studio 2 there.
In the few days of rehearsal at the stadium last week it was fantastic to talk with some of the thousands of other volunteer performers, some of whom had been rehearsing for upwards of 150 hours for the performance and the sense of joy and camaraderie was overwhelming. To be cheered and "drummed" out of the vast dressing rooms by hundreds of drummers on our cue to go to the stadium was very special. It was also great to have along with the current band a few "old boys" ( thanks to David Arnold,Dave Barraclough, Roy Batty, Cliff Hopes, Stan Lippeatt, Pete Matthews, Alan Morrison and Mark Walters ).
There are a few pics on the bands twitter site http://twitter.com/matt_humphreys/status/229690755432718336/photo/1 and http://twitter.com/matt_humphreys/status/229690914233274368/photo/1 and also one here http://www.flickr.com/photos/polyesterpowdercoated/7662918858/ just to prove, as Max Boyce used to say "we were there". I've been very lucky in my banding career to have taken part in some extraordinary performances in some really special venues but I'm really hard pushed to recall something anywhere near the scale and uniqueness of what we did last Friday night.
I don't think anyone is denying that being involved must have been a tremendous lifetime highlight. It's more about the mismatch in the pre-publicity and the actual exposure.
Had the news items been along the lines of 'Grimethorpe are taking part' rather than (paraphrased) 'global exposure for Grimethorpe' then I'm sure this thread would be quite different.
Just a case of the marketing men over egging the pudding again !!
I don't think Sandy is talking about the marketing issues. yes it was over-egged, and yes the team need to learn from this. But Sandy's talking about the achievement of the band, the importance of the event, and his personal pride in being involved in a very important way.
Sandy did a cracking job yet again. You have every reason to be proud.
Just as my post said / heavily implied
No he wasnt, but its the marketing men / publicists that decided to put so much spin on it, as ive said, well done to all involved (maybe not so much to the spin men though)
Well said Sandy and Adrian
There are a few silly comments on this thread now!
As I can see (and I may be wrong) this is how things are -
1. As far as exposure is concerned this has been a fantastic event for banding to be involved in. With a global audience of billions this is fantastic, and will probably be the biggest event that any band will be involved in EVER!! I bet every band in the country would have loved to be involved, and I bet all the "big" bands are jelous that Grimethorpe were chosen.
2. I think that Grimethorpe were the right band to be invited. You could argue that they might not be the best band (on current form) or the most successful band (looking at results through history), however they were heavily involved in a period of time (i.e. the miners strike / pit closures) which was an important part of British history. The fact that they were then chosen to be a huge part in Brassed Off also confirmed this, and through the film brass banding gained a world wide audience and an exposure unheard of before for banding ( or at least since Besses' world tour at the beginning of the last century).
3. I agree that there was a lot of hype from the management of the band before the event. If I had been the bands publicist I would have done exactly the same! It is obvious from the comments from people involved with the band on this site that the Ceremony organisers had promised more exposure than what was given. This happens on a regular basis doesn't it?! I've lost count of the number of gigs I've played in where I have stuffed into a corner somewhere even after the organiser has promised me/us that the performance was to take place on the main stage at the peak time. People need to accept that Grimethorpe's initial press release was as a result of the promises made to the band by the organisers before the event. I genuinely feel for the band that these promises were not kept.
Before any one jumps down my throat these are just my opinions. Feel free to disagree, but please try to in a mature manner (which will be hard for some from what I have seen on this thread!). I don't really count myself as a big Grimethorpe Band (sorry lads!) but on this occasion I feel that they have been unfairly targeted and criticised. Well done Grimethorpe Band on being fine ambassadors for brass bands at such a huge event, and shame on the organisers for not giving you more exposure.
I'm sorry, but the only silly comments are those that exclaim the virtues of 'a global audience of millions'. The great bit is that 'banding' was recognised as a relevant element to be included. The extremely disappointing bit is that there was no brass band exposure. That's the reason there's emotional comments on this thread - we all care about banding and we hoping / expecting that there would be a centre-stage performance. In reality, anonymous people in the stadium had more TV coverage.
I have no interest in knocking Grimethorpe. Sandy and co deserve to be proud and enjoy the experience. Well done.
I was watching in Australia and heard the band but didnt see them sadly. Well done for being involved Grimethorpe. Another feather in your cap!!!
I was there playing drums in the Industrial Revolution scene and in the parade of athletes - along with 1,000 other drummers. It was a truly inspirational night that was incredibly well received both nationally and internationally. Grimey did a great job and it's a pity weren't shown on TV. However, they were appreciated by the 80,000 in the stadium. It's not their fault that the BBC decided what to show and not to show. I bet no one saw the two giant yellow submarines that featured either - along with about a thousand other things that were not broadcast. Never the less, it was a magical night!
Great to see you again Nigel. What an amazing experience! Some great youtube clips of the band marching out and it sounds great on the recording too. Awesome drumming and loved the costume too!
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