How do you feel about pieces where the band is required to sing?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by hicks, Oct 11, 2010.

  1. hicks

    hicks Member

    I've played a couple of pieces recently where band members are required to sing. Honestly I don't think talented brass playing translates to talented singing. The sound of 25 brass players trying to chant "Dont stop me, don't stop me, ooh ooh ooh" in a broad Wiltshire accent just sounds a bit comical. Was this Mr Harper's intention?
  2. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    brought up in a Salvation Army band we were all expected to sing and play - no problem
  3. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    I'd refuse. I'm in a band not a choir.
  4. GinGinnie

    GinGinnie New Member

    We love singing in our band and do lots of it. Ended an entertainments contest all singing the last note rather than playing it! Some good effects to be had by singing me thinks!
  5. nigeb12

    nigeb12 Member

    We used to sing in Nothin Like A Dame. Brought the house down as an encore. I think you have to do it well though otherwise it can sound a little naff.
  6. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    Ah I've seen Grimey do that and it was indeed done well. I, however, sing like I'm a trombone. i.e. tuneless. ;)
  7. hicks

    hicks Member

    Or is that - loud and out of tune? :)

    I agree, it has to be done well. If the singing quality is not good enough, then it's a bit of a joke.
  8. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    Depends what the piece is, I don't mind if the piece is a bit of fun
  9. GeordieSop

    GeordieSop Member

    Same here. not too sure why there should be an issue.

    I've seen a number of bands do this. Brighouse, Grimethorpe to name just a few
  10. Leyfy

    Leyfy Active Member


    But I do it - it looks more stupid to not take part when when the whole band is throwing themselves into it!
  11. themusicalrentboy

    themusicalrentboy Active Member

    a lot of musicians find singing a chore (At my music college, all first years have to attend the college Choir and the news drew a lot of sighs when it was announced), but I love it! I get right into it!

    I think it's like any kind of singing though - for instance if you get a weedy, can't be bothered congregation at a Christmas Carol concert it is dull and boring, but if people sing with a bit of gusto then it suddenly becomes quite enjoyable.
  12. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    SA programmes nearly always include a 'Band Song' - This is usually done at male voice pitch too so all the Women in the band have to sing an octave lower!
  13. Aurora771

    Aurora771 Member

    Recently played African Funk... which requires the band to sing 'In the Jungle'. It was alright, actually. We had decided if we ALL went for it then there is no reason to be embarrassed.
  14. Hells Bones

    Hells Bones Active Member

    Tell that to Mnozil Brass.... ;)
  15. BrassFlyer

    BrassFlyer Member

    Totally agree and having been there and done it is fun, but not something I d like to do often:oops:
  16. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    I don't have to. They are talented musicians. I am just a pretend horn player,with no actual ability.
  17. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    I've been in several groups where the players have been expected to sing, varying from the raucous "Bring out your cans, here comes the garbage man", through Ketelby's "Backshish, backshish" and old time music hall's "Lily of Laguna" to the more sophisticated requirements of "Christ is the answer".

    As someone who enjoys singing and has been a member of choirs all my life I have no problem with this, but I am aware that there are many who are uncomfortable when expected to sing. One thing I would say: if it is going to be done, everyone needs to take it as seriously as they would any instrumental lines - nothing worse for an audience than a half-hearted effort from players who show total disinterest (same applies with clapping or any other such contributions!).
  18. animal.22

    animal.22 Member

    It's always the same,most brass players think the percussion section is beneath them!!!!!! :biggrin: :tongue:
  19. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    I went to listen to (do I dare to admit it here?) a wind band contest last weekend, and a couple of the bands played a piece that required singing. Some pieces only involved only some shouting and/or whispering, so I would be OK with that. On the other hand to bands played a piece by Austrian composer Thomas Doss, which included a quite long section with singing in multiple voices (a little bit like a hymn or a chant, there was no real text). I would be very uncomfortable if I would have to sing something like that. I don't think I would do it.

    btw, the piece is called Alpina Saga. I'd post a link to youtube, but that site is blocked here at work...

    last year, we played an arrangement of The Mansions of the Lord (from the film We Were Soldiers), which involved some singing, but I decided it was better for everyone to keep my mouth shut :) For the rest, my "singing" has been limited to shouting "Mambo" (West Side Story and Windows of the World), "Hoy" (Klezmer Karnival"), something like "Faya kum wamba kum wamba nissum wa" (WotW) and another african-style piece by a Norwegian composer (I forgot the name, but it is on one of the EBBC highlight CDs from a couple years back, I think played by Stavanger)

    Edit: it was called "Kongolela"
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2010
  20. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    I ran an Oompah Showband for many years and singing and clapping etc were part of the job - Fine !

    Singing and clapping etc with a Brass Band - Aaaaaaaaarrghh !! - I could curl up and die with embarrassment.

    I've experienced it a few times over the years at different levels but my feelings were always the same "Let's get this dreadful piece over with"

    I'm not saying that my reaction is the correct one, but however professional, tuneful and musically effective the singing, I personally feel it is all very amateurish and cringeworthy !

    Just my take on it !

    - Mr Wilx