Where are all the North West trombone players?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by wagger-g, Jun 9, 2010.

  1. wagger-g

    wagger-g Member

    Within about 15 miles of our bandroom there are currently at least 5 bands (in addition to us) seeking trombone players. Now I know that trombone playing presents certain technical difficulty that valve flicking does not :D (but it's not rocket science!:-?) and that a little knowledge of bass clef can open many opportunities outside of brass bands, but I can't fathom why we are currently experiencing such a shortage! :confused:

    The trombone is such a rewarding instrument to play I just can't get my head around this situation which seems to be, for us in the North West, bordering on crisis. So where are they?
  2. TommySop

    TommySop New Member

    You could always tap up Gerald Rimmer
  3. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    There certainly not round here - we seem to have a similar problem
  4. David Mann

    David Mann Member

    It's cornet players near us, perhaps an exchange could be negotiated!
  5. floppymute

    floppymute Member

    As a former teacher in Lancashire schools for many years I can say with certainty that the problem, at least in part, stems from fewer school pupils taking up the instrument in years gone by. This was partly because of a shortage of instruments prior to the initiatives undertaken by Lancashire Music Service following the 1997 General Election when they finally received some government funding. There has been some success in training more trombonists and that should be starting to feed through. Yet despite a number of drives specifically targeted to get more trombone pupils (driven by a shortage in the County ensembles) numbers still remained relatively low. Quite simply, a trumpet or cornet was an easier instrument for pupils to carry around and parents preferred them.
  6. themusicalrentboy

    themusicalrentboy Active Member

    to the uninitiated, that sounds like a borderline pornographic euphemism...
  7. DobX Dave

    DobX Dave Member

    I know of two really good players in your area who have recently ‘hung up their trombone’. Both were fed up with the ‘stupid writing’ of trombone parts by composers and arrangers.

    As one put it ~ “it is a colouring instrument ~ not an extension of the baritone, trombone parts have far too many semi-quavers and parts where the composer/arranger has no idea what the average trombonists can handle with regard to slide positions/technique”.

    Whilst many of the championship/first section brass band trombonists can handle the intricacies that the modern day composers/arrangers ~ many cannot and are possibly fed up especially when ‘non-trombonists’ conductors have no sympathy whatsoever.
  8. Aurora771

    Aurora771 Member

    As mentioned before some areas have declined in the number of pupils playing brass, but also I remember when I was in my final years of Secondary there was a push to get more players interested in orchestral and wind band playing, instead of brass band playing. This might not be the case in your area but it's certainly something to think about as to why there are fewer players about.

    "Quite simply, a trumpet or cornet was an easier instrument for pupils to carry around and parents preferred them." This is true... I don't think my mother was initially happy to find out I had brought a baritone home. :p heh

    I wouldn't worry too much about not having the Trombone players, don't these things happen in surges? They'll emerge... you just might had to persuade them :)
  9. StellaJohnson

    StellaJohnson Active Member

    Trombone players are lucky in a sence thre are plenty of styles of music they can adapt to. orchestras, jazz, big band and even some soul bands for example and get paid for it to!!

    Perhaps there are plenty of trombone players about but they rather play other forms of music. I know of a few.
  10. BoBo

    BoBo Member

    They must be all down here, I am struggling to find a permanent seat having moved down here 3 months ago.
  11. lynchie

    lynchie Active Member

    There is quite a lot of rubbish writing for trombone, but I'm surprised that you've heard complaints of it being too difficult. Particularly in "cheese" arrangements the trombones often get nothing but long chords, which I assume is because arrangers are worried that if we had to play more than one note per bar, our arms would explode with the difficulty. As a trombonist, it's generally more interesting to play big band parts than brass band parts.

    One problem with recruiting trombonists is the number that turn up with no knowledge of any clef other than bass clef. Even if players were taught tenor clef it would help, as the jump from tenor to treble is pretty easy.


    spot on ! If i could play a trombone well i d be playing in a dance band on a cruise ship....not staggering down the main street in uppermill playing slaidburn on a whit friday ! I have tried all the cruise ships but they don t want any bb bass players,so it s back to cossack i m afraid.