Hi Newbie Here.. Wishinh Eveyone On Here A Happy New Year

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by brasswizard, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. brasswizard

    brasswizard New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    I've just joined the site to help make banding friends, share experiences and hopefully find some valuable help in trying to get better at my craft!!
    Any help and advice offered will be very much appreciated as I've just started playing again after a terrible time health-wise!!

    Happy New Year to Everyone on the Site and I hope I have an enjoyable time on here an hope to make many new banding friends.

    all the best

    Fergus :)
  2. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Welcome aboard! We haven't ever had a lot of input from NI banding, so it's nice to think that we might have some more. Which band(s) are/were you with?
  3. brasswizard

    brasswizard New Member

    Hi Dave,

    many thanks for the kind welcome, I am with Lagavale Metal Technology Band.. we're a championship or senior band over in Northern Ireland and have done well over the years in Blackpool as well as over here in our own banding competitions!.
    Hopefully I can share in the forum on here and also gain valuable advice along the way. thanks again Fergus
  4. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome.

    I believe that there are just a few people on here from NI but maybe that info is from an old thread and often people do not say where they are from. I'm not sure now where DS2014 is based (Eire or NI) but he might know of members more local to you. Whatever, enjoy - and pick out the good from the otherwise.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2015
  5. John Brooks

    John Brooks Well-Known Member

    Welcome Fergus, and I look forward to your contributions to the site. Can't say I've ever heard of your band, where are you located? Best regards John
  6. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    I think part of it is there's already a separate NI brass band forum. But that's never seen a large amount of traffic, and last time I checked it, that seemed to have tapered off to very little.

    The relation of NI banding to mainland UK banding has been surprisingly diffuse in my observation, I suppose much as the relation of NI as a whole to the rest of the UK is. The width of the Irish Sea has a strongly isolating effect from our perspective, which is a real shame, as it is a beautiful place with strong communities that have a lot to offer (an observation that goes just as well for the Republic too - but of course we aren't linked to them administratively in the same way), and there is a decent brass band scene there, really not very far away at all.

    While bands like Laganvale and 1st Old Boys do their bit to engage with the mainland contesting scene, attending contests such as the Spring Festival and the Masters, it does seem to me a pity that there's no involvement of NI bands in our national competition. And as they are classified under the NW region, expecting them to travel across the water to Blackpool to compete is always going to discourage most. I can't help thinking that it would be an excellent move from both perspectives to adopt one of the existing Irish competitions as an additional area qualifying contest. NIBA is probably the closest equivalent, but is run in the autumn. What do you reckon? Good or bad idea?
  7. DS2014

    DS2014 Active Member

    I played for years in a brass band in the Republic of Ireland, though am now in NW England. The scene south of the border is very much the poor relation of that in the North. There is no band in the Republic who could compete with the best NI bands. Championship section in the Republic (which is where I played) is equivalent to 2nd Section in England (which is my current band's section). There are only a handful of bands who enter the Nationals each year, and the winner qualifies for European B section, where they are usually out of their depth. Because of the small number of bands, it is extremely difficult to find MDs, and this has a very negative effect on the progress of bands. It's a vicious circle: kids are rarely exposed to very good bands and players, and their aspirational targets are accordingly low. whilst the key players in the best bands would hold their own in most bands in England, one is constantly battling against the lack of talent, awareness, and dedication in the sizeable number of the band's members. The best competition in the Republic is held in Clonakilty each July, and is an open competition and a mixture of wind and brass bands in the same sections. This competition is much better supported by bands than are the Nationals, since many bands view the Nationals as a hell of a lot of work to get a test piece ready, only to find that there are only three other bands in your section.
  8. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    I suppose also there's the effect of considering whether going to County Cork in the summer or County Armagh in the autumn would be a more pleasant day out weather-wise... Mind you, Clonakilty's going to be a longer journey for almost everyone.
  9. brasswizard

    brasswizard New Member

    Hi John,

    Many thanks for the kind words of welcome and sorry for the delayed reply..have been quite ill there unfortunately. Laganvale are one off 5 Championship Bands in Northern Ireland. We have won the Irish Title (NIBA) on numerous occasions but have been going thru a difficult patch lately with players leaving and also trying to get players out to rehersals etc due to work or family commitments!! but it's going ok now and with a new young conductor in place from last week things are looking good!.

    I know a lot off Salvation Army players in Canada and had the privilage off playing under Bram Gregson many years ago! great conductor and band trainer!! Also know many from the Canadian Staff Band too!!

    Hopefully I can gain many new banding friends on here! and thank you again for the kind welcome again

    regards Fergus