What would make a difference to your band?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by OneTonBass, Nov 27, 2009.

  1. OneTonBass

    OneTonBass Member

    Can or could one (or maybe two) better players make a huge difference to your band?
    When I mean better I mean in relation to your current bands abillity. e.g a 3rd section band recruiting a former euph or cornet (whos willing to take the end seat) from a successful 1st section etc.
  2. 4thmandown

    4thmandown Member

    One or two players don't make that much difference to the overall standard. Full rehearsals do, but one has to be realistic. If I didn't miss band tonight to let the wife go out for a change on a Friday, I'd be looking straight at divorce. Band is not the most important thing in my life!
  3. tpcornet12

    tpcornet12 Member

    Although - decent end chairs can instill confidence in the band so can make a big difference. It also gives players something to aspire to.
  4. jezza23361

    jezza23361 Member

    Even one great player can lift a band - Richard Marshall helped us out once on the end and immediately lifted the standard of the rest of the band. When I used to play golf (always degrees of badly) - if I played alongside better players it made me play better - and the converse is true as well.

  5. Thirteen Ball

    Thirteen Ball Active Member

    I can only really speak for bass sections, because that's where my playing experience lies, but I do know that having a better player on the left of the line (ie: solo Eb) makes a massive difference to the way the band sounds. Since sound passes from left to right down a bass section, one good player there can really help bring on weaker/inexperienced/less confident players further down the section, and more than any other, that chair is the one that drives the band forward.

    The opposite is also true. Having a weaker/more inexperienced player in that chair can cause big problems - particularly rhythmic and tuning-related. I've played at a couple of contests where the conductor - having a strong and confident top BB in the band (not me I hasten to add) swapped the Eb and BBb basses over in order to pass some of that confidence down the line. And it worked.

    What is most important, and far more important than the quality of an individual is that players work together as a team. That no-one objects to being knocked off a bar here and there, that everyone sorts out their breathing, and takes criticism professionally. There are so many things we as players can sort out that a conductor shouldn't have to point out.

    But then again, a more experienced and confident player will tend to bring that with them, and organise the team as a whole based upon their knowledge - so I suppose it does help on that score too! Having spent the ealy part of my contesting career sat between two exceptionally good and seasoned veterans of bass playing, (Andy "Belfast Barman" Stephenson and the late Adie Davidson) I can't describe how much hearing them in my ear every week and the advice I got from them improved my playing. All I had to do was be open to learning from them and I couldn't help but improve!

    And that's the key I think. One good player can make a massive difference - so long as those around him/her are willing to take the advice and follow the example. If they can't or won't do that - don't expect a real improvement.
  6. cmccabe

    cmccabe New Member

    Never mind players, finding some where we can rehearse long-term would be useful to us!
  7. Nanny Ogg

    Nanny Ogg Member

    Oodles and oodles of cornets, and regular attendance of band practice, so we all improve together (says she who is often away because of work)
  8. 3rdcornetsolo

    3rdcornetsolo Member

    speaking to one of the adjudicators at the lower section nationals regarding my local band's performance (a performance which sounded poor and the band were not happy with but the adjudicator had placed quite high up) he said he placed them so highly because a section of the piece which was played between the sop and rep was one of the better that he had heard that day and that other than this the band were not particularly good (and without it would have been placed down the field).

    Both the sop and rep players are former top section players. So i guess a couple of good players can make a difference!

    Sorry if this sounds a little vague but i didnt want to name and shame lol.
  9. Rapier

    Rapier Supporting Member

    See, now we are at the other end of the scale. We own our band room, instruments, including timps etc. but have only a few committed players. And if we don't find a new conducor soon we may even fold (after 116 years)!

    So in answer to the original post, A Conductor and a couple of cornets would save us.
  10. Yes esp euph/cornet/bass players can completely transform a band and knock them up through the sections if they are experienced players and know how to make the right noise and balance. Not many of them about it has to be said.
  11. Interesting thoughts, at Torbay we have like so many others had more downs than ups of late but we have got some new players in. What would make a difference would be to find that commodity rarer than rocking horse droppings ...... trombones. Where are they all? I reckon finding gold at the end of a rainbow would be easier!
  12. Getzonica

    Getzonica Active Member

    Sometimes one person can make a difference, but it's more in a way the effect they have on the band as a whole. In other words, if this new person helps the band/ plays with/ conducts , which in turn makes the rest of the players build up confidence and improve, then in a way it is the whole band that are making the difference because it has to be a team effort...

    I hope I'm making sence here...
  13. Leyfy

    Leyfy Active Member

    Our end man is really good, and as a consequence, sitting next to him boosts my confidence as I know 99% he'll play the right note in the right place.

    (unlike me! lol)
  14. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    I'm not sure I'd take any player at the moment, Fortunate as we are, we don't need to fill any seats right now. :)
  15. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    In a cornet section, having a good 2nd man down and rep makes a huge difference. As does having a strong bottom 3rd cornet.

    A strong 2MD allows the principal the freedom to concentrate on leading the section and playing the solos without having to worry about covering every note. A strong rep gives the top 2 a decent base to sit on and will help the sop player's confidence no end. A strong 3rd cornet will link the cornets to the horns in the overall texture and create a better balance in a section that can too often generate a top-heavy sound.

    *by strong I don't just mean loud. A big sound helps, certainly, but stamina, technique and most of all unflappability under pressure are required too.
  16. nickeastwood

    nickeastwood New Member

    Yes, definitely. It brings the whole morale of the entire band up. I believe this has already been said, but i certainly think that other players having someone to aspire towards is fanastic. I know what it's like to play under some really awe inspiring brass band players and it makes you up your game. Just be careful that you don't make your beginners so disheartened from the level of some players that they want to leave! You're very lucky if your band's in this situation anyway!
  17. halsasaurus

    halsasaurus Member

    Besses have recently confirmed the appointment of Jonny Lo as new MD for 2010+
    We know that this great musician will be instrumental in the successful rebuilding of this famous Band
  18. killer

    killer Member

    [ If I didn't miss band tonight to let the wife go out for a change on a Friday, I'd be looking straight at divorce. Band is not the most important thing in my life![/quote]

    Whaaat,,,, well it should be, Iv lost count of the amount of times the wife has issued the band/divorce threat, I just wish she,d get on with it.;)
  19. still learnin

    still learnin Member

    One or two members of a band, new or otherwise, can have a big impact by setting new standards and inspiring others to want to be better. I reckon that the biggest impact on any band is having a strong team ethos, i.e. every player committed to not letting his or her mates down by not practising or not turning up. Fortunately in most bands the majority of players find reasons and ways to commit and cover for those who are "special" and often can't make practices or jobs (bless them).

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