Last Waltz for Darley Dale.............

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Shaggy, Aug 24, 2006.

  1. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    .........yes indeed the familly is gathered round the patient, who is surrounded with all manner of electronic life preserving equipment and the decision has to be made whether to pull the plug.........

    Its been a full and happy life for the faithfull to look back on. Re- born in 1987 along with one of its original members Kieth Sheldon (who is still with the band) Darley went on to become a band to fear, scaling the upper reaches of the first section and coming fourth at the First Section national finals at Wembley. Trips to London became an annual event, and who can forget our red letter day at Widnes??? I have never seen or heard such a complete and utter thrashing of the opposition at a contest, even yours truely won best garage builder.

    For the last few years it has become impossible to replace players who have left, with new ones of the same ability and comittment. For many years we were able to function quite successfully with a solid, dependable, competant hard core of about ten to fifteen players and STILL sound like the best band for miles around.

    In more recent years that hard core has been whittled away slowly as a result of deaths, births, marriages and all the other reasons people move on or stop banding. Even now as a write, I know I could muster up a ****** good band just with the players who live little more than a stones throw from the band room.

    Thats the point though, the players available within our natural contituency, simply are not available to us, and without that support you cant hope to pull in players from further afield, or at least you cant do it perched on the edge of a small Town like Matlock, and with no large connurbation from which to attract prospective players.

    What happened at Darley was nothing short of a miracle given all the difficulties we had to face as a village band out in the sticks with no track record or reputation in the contesting or banding world.

    The glory years saw Darley attracting some of the best players around, far too many to mention in one post but I must give a mention to the small number of outstanding MD,s who produced winning performances.

    Roger Jepson, who was responsible for putting Darley on the map and bringing us the first sweet taste of success. His recruiting skills were always an integral part of his armoury not least in persuading me, (a hard bitten and very busy jazz piano player at the time) to join up, and spend the next 17 years driving from Derby to Darely Dale two or three time a week!

    Mark Wilcockson, who delivered a staggering 196 point shafting to the oppostion at the regionals playing" Oceans" (probably the only time I KNEW we had won a contest before the contest was even over!)

    Sarah Groarke, after all the great years with "Jeppo" and Mark it seemed almost impertinent to expect anything further in the way of Silverware, but ****** me if the golden eagle didn't **** on our heads yet again!! "The Frog" delivered to us what turned out to be the high water mark for Darley Band. Fourth place at the first section finals (Duncan Beckley the adjudicator could find nothing wrong with the performance, which has had us scratching our heads ever since wondering why we were not placed first!)

    Sarah was also at the helm when we rasied the whole of north west England to the ground with a stonking rendition of "Fire Storm" at Widnes, where we won just about all the silverware available, including a winning performance by the percussion section, lead by your humble correspondant.

    We are playing our last gig at the Three Staggs this sunday, come down and see us off and have a few beers with the last of "the few" at Darley Dale Band.

    .......beep.....beep........beep.........beep............beep zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ;
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2006
  2. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    It's always a shame to hear of a band having to fold, hope the concert goes well and is fitting of the occassion.
  3. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    yeah ok then mods...sigh...."winning performance by the percussion section" will have to do then! I preferred the original personally. Why is it the mods never have to own up to editing? unlike the poster himself?

    Surely thats fair mods?
  4. 2nd man down

    2nd man down Moderator Staff Member

    huh?? You've lost me I'm afraid.
  5. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    Sorry mate! must have been old "Cresty" zapping my best stuff again.
  6. Roger Thorne

    Roger Thorne Active Member

    Personally I didn't, as the original didn't comply with our fff policy.

    Happy now?

  7. Brassb3ll3nd

    Brassb3ll3nd Member

    It's sad to hear of a band folding, especially when you've enjoyed so much success. My own band is going through some similar problems you describe in your thread.

    Hopefully with the commitment of our core of regular players we can get through it and continue to progress. We have given several qulaity concerts this summer with only five cornet players on our books, we are definitley going to Pontins so, fingers crossed, things should start to look up.

    Best wishes to you all, sorry I won't be able to make your final concert.
  8. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    "fff policy"..blimey! whats that? an extreamly loud policy?
  9. BeatTheSheep

    BeatTheSheep Member

    Hopefully your former players can help to fill positions in other struggling local bands. All the same, it's sad. I thought some time ago that the price of petrol would mean a migration back to local bands. But players these days are fussy, same as everyone else
  10. Robhibberd29

    Robhibberd29 Active Member

    Very sorry to here of Darley's plight Shaggy, I enjoyed my few occasions playing there was just that bit too far and inconvenient for me to make it a regular visit and for that I apologise.I'm sure I speak for everyone at Killamarsh Silver Band when I say your more than welcome to grace our rehearsals or concerts whenever you feel the inclination.We may have to hold an extraordinary committee meeting though!!!
  11. markyboy

    markyboy Member

    More sad news today !!! As well as hearing about Maynard Ferguson I've just been reading about Darley Dale folding, and I'm just as upset.

    I can remember when I played for Marple fom 93 to 95 we always had a very good relationship with Darley Dale including a very successful joint concert in 1994 (?).

    They would lend us percussion equipment , uniforms (as ours were very similar ) and we some really enjoyable concerts at the ' Square and Compass' pub, promoted by Mark Wilcockson who was the landlord at the time.

    Some bands come and go but its always sad to hear that a village band has gone for good. Is it really too late to save it ? If the decision has been made then fair enough, but as I have mentioned before ther have been plenty of other bands that could have folded but fought on and are doing very well indeed these days.

    I hope the concert is well supported and the bands assets are disposed of that will benefit the other bands in the area.

    Best wishes , Mark
  12. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    Thanks for your kind offer Rob, will always do what I can for you sick depraved head cases at killamarsh.
  13. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    Marky Boy yes I remember the stuff we did with you lot, the Landlord involved was Mark Singleton a Bone player for your band and ours. He was running the Square and Compass just up the road from the Staggs and he did a lot of great work for Darley and was in the band in our best days.
    I hear what you say about not giving up, hanging in there,waiting for better times but we have been doing exactly that for five or six years and we have just been worn down by the experience. Getting a band together for a string of summer season gigs, a Christamas season or the the Area contest, has become a depressing grueling drudge, especially for me as its been my resposibility for the last few years.

    There have been many occasions when i have spent four or five nights a week on the fone trying to get bands for the coming weekends gigs. You soon run out of good will believe me! people get sick and tired of you ringing up begging and grovelling for their help and it just becomes embarrassing. That of course is assuming you get a responce from the people you have tried to contact, many dont even bother to ring back. One of the most annoying aspects of this operation is when bands you have helped out a number of times over the years refuse to return the favour.

    The other side of the coin (for me at least!) was that help was rightly expected in return, and i soon found myself not only doing my own gigs and spending a long time getting bands for them, but I was also tearing about all over Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and South Yorkshire helping out other bands as well.
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2006
  14. postie

    postie Member

    Really sorry to hear that Darley Dale have decided to fold, but can understand your reasons spending time having to constantly looking for players can be a nightmare.


    What time is it on Sunday?
  16. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    Hi Spongy! its a 7.30 k.o. see you there, come and have a chat with the undead of Darley Dale!
  17. FlugelD

    FlugelD Member

    Hi Shaggy,

    You've probably considered it, but how about going 'rehearsal only' for a while to see if things pick up? (I'm sorry to see any band fold, even if you're foreigners... ;) )

    Best of luck to all of you in your future playing careers, where'er that may be...
  18. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    Yes thanks for that Dee, we have considered all the options you can be sure, and I share your anguish at the thought of a Band going under, but we have had a number of years to weigh up the options. It is possible that some players may choose to take that option (few as they are) but its all "if's" and "buts" really.

    Thank you for your thoughts.
  19. Shaggy

    Shaggy New Member

    I have had some great times in "Chilly Jocko land" over the last few years, in Dundee, Edinburgh and Motherwell. I can thoroughly reccommend a trip north of the border.
  20. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    How did the farewell concert go? Was it a tearful occasion with everybody reminiscing the history of the band with a few drams at it's close. Hopefully everybody has made plans for the future, not giving up banding.

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