Very interesting to read the latest edition of Brass Band World. Howard Snell has made in my view some very pertinant observations re. the Salvationists growing influence on banding. I quote- "It (SP&S) has a hugely monopolistic position and is a thoroughly bad thing for banding" On composing- "Unfortunately and realistically ,composers for brass band must now be defined separately: independent composers on the one hand, and, on the other, the elect, the SP&S composers." "SP&S is primarily a support organisation for a religious body"....."Banding should not be used in this way. It should not be secondary to anything else. I believe that it is socially and musically too important to be used for others` hidden purposes." "Remember that a performance of one SA work means one less performance of an independent composer. Where does that lead? Independent composers leaving banding (not just in the UK, but wherever). "Looking at the progress of SA banding these past 50 years, the prospects of the SA/SP&S running banding are not good, if the record is anything to go by."......"Taken together with the modern SA`s impressive abilty to lose its money down miscellaneous and sundry black holes, the prognosis is not encouraging." "SP&S can and will dominate the future direction of banding because of its size and wish to do so. I have it from a very reliable source that Salvation Army members have been heard recently saying "We are in charge now" " When Howard Snell makes observations like these I suggest we take note! Ian Heard.