Salvation Army Music and Secular Bandis

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by P_S_Price, Jul 18, 2012.

  1. carlwoodman

    carlwoodman Member

    Yes, that appears in the 2000 edition Regulations and Guidelines for Musicians but I am fairly certain that, since 2000, this was relaxed in the way that I mentioned earlier.
  2. Active Member

    Some conductors and bands not necessarily connected with The Salvation Army have chosen to record pieces from Salvation Army repertoire.

    Recently, we took delivery of Tredegar in Concert Volume 1 which has Lorne Barry's Credo as the final track and Cory Band recorded Steven Ponsford's Turris Fortissima on Enter the Galaxies a few years ago.
  3. RossAB

    RossAB Member

    In my experience with non-SA banding (which is limited, admittedly) I tend to have found the more Salvationists there are in a band, the more likely it is that SA music will be played. So it could be that the knowledge of the music is there with the bands with more Salvationists in, but it could also be possible that the music is played more because it's more relevant to the people within the band?
  4. Cantonian

    Cantonian Active Member

    Where does one put the 'crossover' music such as PLC's Fire in the Blood and particularly Vitae Eternum, the slow movement tune being an arrangement of Ivor Bosanko's song His Provision. Purcell variations (Downie) and Torchbearer (Graham)? These three composers are considered mainstream brass band composers but all have SA backgrounds and most bands play a lot of these guy's music.
  5. halsasaurus

    halsasaurus Member

    At Besses we have been playing some Dean Jones such as Glorifico Aeternum which is SA music I believe. It is very very good
  6. Thirteen Ball

    Thirteen Ball Active Member

    Not forgetting that it works both ways. Eric ball produced two versions of Torchbearer, the one under that name for SA bands and the one I prefer 'Torch of Freedom' for secular bands.

    I would agree that works such as 'Truth Aflame' by Kevin Norbury are absolute belters, that particular example being on a par with anything in the secular repertoire. We've had that in the pad at hebden for a while and it's only fixture congestion which has stopped us getting it up because the band love it.

    There are traits within the writing which readily identify the piece as being of Salvationist origin, but only inasmuch as it must be obvious to a salvationist when a secular composer has written a hymn arrangement with his/her mind on the contest platform on saturday afternoon rather than St Somebody's on Sunday morning.

    OK, perhaps you have a point that secular bands are not known for delving into SA repertoire regularly..... however it's not the secular bands that would pass over a Gregson, Sparke, or Wilby piece just because it didn't contain an element of christian worship. I think this rather more likely than a secular band passing over a Ball or Graham piece just because it did....

    A narrow approach helps neither side.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2012
  7. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Interesting points all. Thanks
  8. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Yes it is SA. it was on our rep until recently
  9. Fedman

    Fedman Member

    At Tewkesbury Band we are currently playing, March- Stateside, Images of Praise, There is a Redeemer and Cause for Celebration and have recently had in our Praise Concert Programmes: Jubilation, Goldcrest, Marching Onward, Service Our Joy, The Children's Friend amongst others. Haven't checked that these all come from the SA.

    The music we have chosen is so uplifting and can also be a challenge in places for a third section band and so provides audience and player with something special. I am so glad that we can purchase and play this music. The other wonderful thing about this music is that it is original brass band music and not merely transcriptions or arrangements of pop and classic which secular brass bands are famous for. OK I know many are based on hymns and songs but the concept of using those in inspiring what is otherwise original music is very refreshing. However, there is a time and place for many of the pieces to be played but as many bands use our churches and chapels as concert halls then there should be no shortage of opportunities to play this music. (PS The music is so good don't let anybody else know about it otherwise they will all be playing it!)
    MD Tewkesbury Town Band
  10. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    This thread has been most enlightening for me. Some Bands play SA publications and some dont (suprising - not really), in general there appear to be a recognition that some is quality (again I agree some is some isnt). But the primary objection seems to be its ethos, rather than its scoring (which was a bit of a suprise, as in most instances I didnt think that the melodies, which are more usually based on Choir pieces rather than Hymns, would be widely known).

    Particular influence on the playing of the music seems to be those bands that have members with an SA banding connection (Again this isnt so suprising).

    Thanks to everybody for contributing.
  11. Active Member

    Following on from my post at #22, one of our most popular sheet music purchases (if not THE most popular) has been the cornet solo Share My Yoke which has also been recorded no end of times! I think James Watson was one of the first soloists not connected to The Salvation Army to feature this solo and it has been popular ever since.

    I wouldn't like to say that the sentiments of Joy Webb's song are necessarily always understood as I have seen, on more than one occasion, the mis-spelling of Yoke as Yolk!
  12. Active Member

    Perhaps so but, conversely, two of the most played and recorded pieces by bands over the last 20 years or so, according to our track list, are I'll Walk With God (Nicholas Brodsky arr. Goff Richards) and The Irish Blessing (Joyce Eilers Bacak arr. Stephen Bradnum), both of which have overt titles but are not published by The Salvation Army.
  13. As someone who has played on both sides, I agree that in certain cases it can be musicians looking at the title, who printed it i.e SA, then immediately pulling a face at playing it. If however, they approached the music in the same way they would any other piece they would find some really reach music writing with the page. Another complaint I have heard is about the music that is being read i.e repeats too long in some pieces where do we go back to. Admittedly that is just poor reading but nevertheless an 'excuse'. Perhaps asking advice from the local SA bandmaster would help bands plan their programmes when using SA music?

    We have and do use SA music now that is available. Certainly, hymn tune arrangements take some beating as does many of the marches and Festival series pieces. Really it is down to an individual choice by any band but the SA has a wealth of music that can be used by everyone. They also have many talented composers who should be encouraged to write for both SA and 'other' bands.
  14. Joy Webb's A new Dimension for cornet was that published by SA?
  15. Bungle

    Bungle Member

    Although it has been previously said, basing a piece of music around a hymn or choral tune could been seen as a constraint, it does mean the audience does have a tune they might recognise which helps to engage them. I would say our band plays at least one SA piece per concert. We played Glorifico Aeternum at our last contest and our last concert and a couple of years ago were rehearsing Blazon for a contest.
  16. julian

    julian Member

    As a self confessed Bando and Salvation Army Officer I have been following this thread with great interest, and whilst I do not pretend to have all the answers, I would like to share a few personal thoughts for consideration - In no particular order!

    Firstly, I really enjoy quality non Salvation Army brass band music. In the past, before becoming an officer, I used to play in contesting bands (I only stopped because of pressure of work, no other reason) and particularly admire the works of Gilbert Vinter.

    Perhaps one of the reasons that non Salvation Army bands play very little Salvation Army music is partly a question of availability. True it is now available to everyone, but only in recent years, and so many bands just don't have very much in their cupboards. I'm not sure (and I'm quite happy to be corrected!) that apart from the 'classics' in our various compilation books, that all the previous publications are readily available to buy, and if they are, they still have to compete for a band's hard earned money in a world that has many times more publications than it did 20 years ago.

    Regarding the playing of non Salvation Army publication by Salvation Army bands (and please, this is only my personal opinion) for me as an officer (minister), I need to remember what the purpose of a Salvation Army band or other musical group is for. It is primarily as an act of worship or a method of evangelism, and the vast majority of music is chosen carefully for the words that it is based upon and not just for entertainment value.

    Also, this is why this music was written in the first place, and you should expect to find many refrences to hymns etc within it!

    Finally, it gives me great pleasure to hear non Salvation Army bands playing Salvation Army music - keep it up - we've got some great music that seldom gets played, just waiting to be discovered!
  17. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    Julian makes a good point about availability of SA publications, and I think in the past potential purchasers may have been put off by the prospect of buying a sheet with three or four pieces on it, only one of which they really wanted. The move towards issuing single pieces - together with the move towards an A4 page size for the Triumph and General Series - will undoubtedly have improved that situation.

    One SA piece that has definitely caught bands' imagination is "Shine as the light", very widely performed and recorded by both adult and youth groups.

    As to the question of SA bands playing non-SA published music, I take the point that music should be carefully chosen to match the occasion, but there is definitely a place for entertainment for entertainment's sake. From the early days the SA has included transcriptions and arrangements of non-religious works, and the present broadening out is to my mind a natural extension of this.
  18. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    Thats a gimmie and the reason SA Bands exist from an SA perspective. But our festivals arent always about evanaglism. Even Jesus liked a party!

    Agreed; hence this thread.
  19. Toni2

    Toni2 Member

    I've already heard a few of my personal favourites mentioned here - Credo and Glorifico Aeternum...I for one am glad that this repertoire was opened up to us non-SA banders.

    On a shameless advertising point; on the 8th Sept Carlton Main are playing the afternoon spot at the Bridgewater Hall, Manchester and we are due to feature a large amount of Salvation Army music - Goldcrest is in there but some lovely new stuff and fantastic solo's too. The whole concert has been devised around the theme of Praise.

    It would be great to see as many non-SA and SA banders there as possible!
  20. P_S_Price

    P_S_Price Member

    CN Divisional Band are there too in the 1st floor of the entrance hall during the morning.

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