Oh no, I've just been reminiscing!

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by KMJ Recordings, Mar 24, 2006.

  1. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    I've just been digging through some old Radio broadcast cassettes and came across the first Radio 3 Bandstand programme I ever recorded in 1987...

    We recorded it about 3 weeks after my Dad died whilst in Germany organising a tour for Besses (with Ifor James, French Horn player) - the programme was John Golland's Euphonium Concerto (at that time there was only one) and Resurgam. Listening to it again has reminded me of three things:

    1) What a phenomenal (and generally unsung) euphonium player Graham McEvoy was;
    2) Why I still can't play or listen to Resurgam;
    3) How scared I was of Peter Parkes at 16 :eek:

    I also found an interview my Dad did on BBC Radio Manchester with Alec Greenhalgh - there was a kind of "Desert Island Disc" thing for 'famous' Bandsmen in the mid-80s that used Dobcross warming up as a theme tune....how times have changed!

    Sorry, just had to get that out of my system....

    I've also just found a tape of a pre-Area rehearsal of Lowry Sketchbook - that was quite entertaining as well :D

    Back to the collection....
  2. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    I've just realised that part of the above post could be taken out of context - I was meaning recorded in the role of performer, not as engineer ;)

    (I had a visit to my website from the Beeb this morning, which prompted me to reread the post :sup)
  3. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    I too have old Bandstand recordings of Besses and other bands. It's easy to forget that, after Grimethorpe, Besses were just about the most progressive band of the 70's and 80's, playing new and challenging music. I still cherish my recording of Phyllis Tate's Illustrations, amongst others.
  4. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Indeed - I had lunch with Roy Newsome last Saturday and we were talking about that sort of era. I was lucky enough to have attended a fair few of the Premieres of the late 70s and 80s.
  5. ian perks

    ian perks Active Member

    I have a BBC Bandstand of the year recording from 1977 by Black Dyke the programe was:
    The Shipbuilders
    Horn Pipe Suite
    James Cook Circumnavigator.
    This programe won them the title of BBC BANDSTAND for that year.
    Have got to say what fantastic playing throughout the broadcast just a sheer pleasure to listen to even now all those years on:clap:
  6. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Somewhere I've got the Besses Band of the Year broadcast (it was either 1979 or 1978?).

    Their programme for that recording was Spirals (Frank Cordell), In Memoriam RK (Elgar Howarth) and Serenade (Derek Bourgeois) I think....I must look for it.
  7. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    The Traditional Hornpipe Suite by Adrian Cruft? Yet another example of a fine set of miniatures long forgotten, alas.
  8. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    I think a lot of the older 'new' repertoire has been largely forgotten about, James - which is highly unfortunate. There are things buried in Band's libraries gathering dust maybe because the current players and administrators don't know how good it is or sometimes even what it is :rolleyes:

    I guess another factor is that there are fewer and fewer chances for such repertoire to get played in an appropriate context - hats off to Paul Hindmarsh et al for their endeavours at keeping the large brass festivals alive :tup:
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2006
  9. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    When bands were lucky enough to be experimental like Besses and Grimey, these archives should be refreshed now and again. A lot of the stuff both bands played were forward thinking and probably will stand the test of time!
  10. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member


    The problem again lies with finding the appropriate forum - Besses main outlets were music festivals and radio broadcasts with many commissions coming for both formats. Obviously, the movement has lost the relatively major airtime it used to enjoy (in my searches through the cassettes I found a LttB that was an hour long (Sunlife & Dyke), never mind the more 'serious' regular programming). The number of major music festivals that include the kind of Brass Band music we're discussing has also declined and will only get worse....but the music is still there for people to enjoy.

    That said, I really love Chromascope...but I'm not sure that it'd go down particularly well with modern audiences - fab piece though ;)
  11. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    - Paul Patterson's work is a classic. Should be ideal for 1st section nowadays.
  12. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    I can already imagine the complaints :p

    Still, at least you'd have an excuse for blowing through your instrument on a contest stage without any notes coming out of the end :D
  13. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    What a genius idea:clap: . I've got a NYBBW recording of Chromoscope somewhere and it's a cracker. He wrote another piece (called Cataclysm I think) which isn't as instantly memorable but still very good.

    True, but the premiere of Gregson's Tuba Concerto (which Besses and Ifor James commissioned) was actually given at a concert in Middleton Civic Centre with the legendary John Fletcher as soloist. Wish I'd heard that! I know this is a discussion which has been had before but I think we are in a bit of a vicious circle - bands assume that audiences don't want "new" music so we don't play it, so audiences don't get accustomed to hearing bands playing anything other than movie themes and folk tune arrangements and are taken aback when new music is played. If every band included something new or "challenging" in their concerts I'm confident at least some of our audiences would develop a taste for it (like marmite?)
  14. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    I know it was - I was there (I was 6 I think!) and I've got the signed programme somewhere ;)

    However, Brass Band audience demographics have changed significantly in the last 30 years. Try filling the Civic with an audience for a programme like that now and see how many of them come back after the interval :(
  15. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    I'd like to hear Henze's Ragtimes and Habaneras make a comeback (though I suppose the lack of percussion may cause a problem!) ;)
  16. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    - hasn't it been featured on and off on a regular basis on the Festival Of Brass series?

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