A long awaited return to banding

NeilOverton

New Member
Howdy, folks.
As a teenager I was principal cornet for Rowntree Band, then baritone then euph.
Now, after my lads bought me a second hand horn for my 51st, i find myself in a local band as 1st horn player.
And I'm loving it.
But I need your help...
I really want a horn copy of some of the pieces I used to play and love.
If anyone has a copy of any horn part for these, you'd make an old man happy.
Sinfonietta ( Langford)
Shipbuilders
Dimensions
Land of the long white cloud
Concerto grosso

Please let me know if you'd be able to send a photo or scan...
Cheers.
N
 

Jack E

Well-Known Member
"Old man", he says . . . at 51 . . . pfft!! :rolleyes: 😊 I can remember being 51 like it were yesterday . . . an' killing a woolly mammoth to celebrate the tribe learning how to make fire, instead of just sitting around waiting for a thunderbolt to hit a tree . . .

But, seriously, Neil - welcome back to the Land of Brass, and I hope that somebody can help you out.

With best regards,
Jack
 

John Brooks

Well-Known Member
Lol with Jack. I too well remember my younger days! Glad to hear you're enjoying playing again; make the most of it and I will you success. Good luck with your music hunt.
John
 

NeilOverton

New Member
Lol. I'm certainly enjoying getting the lip back in with arban, salvation army hymns and ravenswood and concert prelude for the time being.
Not sure how much more my family can take though!
Last weeks rehearsal was cancelled due to positive tests among several. So covid continues to disrupt the opening up of the band world .
Supposed to be a march contest on the 19th of september in Blackburn. Looks doubtful.
I'm assuming this last 18 months has had a catastrophic impact on us. I hear of many players calling it a day ahead of their time. Lord knows how things will pan out . I imagine many smaller bands will fold. Does anyone have any inside knowledge on the state of things?
 

Jack E

Well-Known Member
@NeilOverton - I suspect you're right, and that many smaller bands will fold. What concerns me the most is what happens to youngsters who were only at learners / training band stage; a band shutting down for the best part of 18 months seemed like a very long time to me (and I'm 74). What must it have seemed like to a child of 8 or 9 years old? Or even to a teenager who was only at the learner stage? I fear that many of them will have found other interests in the meantime, and may never return to playing brass at all - and that won't just be a personal loss to them.

If juniors and learners aren't being trained by bands to replace main band members who retire, or move away, then it won't just be the smaller bands that will fold - aside from the championship and 1st section bands, who can snap up the music college graduates, the majority of bands will be at risk of permanent closure.

With best regards,
Jack
 

NeilOverton

New Member
I fear you're correct. As an ex teacher in primary schools, I've also seen a marked swing away from brass lessons either as a class or in small groups like I once used to see. Now, it's all guitars or, worse, Ukeleles, and keyboards.
It's bound to feed through in 10 years.
 

trumpetb

New Member
I believe I have a view on this.

I have played throughout the lockdowns giving performances every day to all who are in earshot and I can tell you that many youngsters are not only willing to learn brass but easily develop a deep love of brass instruments and I have personally experienced many occasions where youngsters between 8 and 16 have been inspired with a desire to take up a brass instrument.

I have an unshakeable belief that the new generations are as motivated as they always were to embrace brass instruments they just have been denied the chance during lockdown.

People are the same now with the same loves and desires as they were a few years or decades ago. They simply need to hear the instruments to discover them and to realise that these instruments mean something to them.

I consider myself to be opening hearts and minds and while playing in formal concert bands and clubs is our aspiration. I see this as preaching to the already converted. Out in the community playing to audiences who have never had a chance to hear brass instruments played well is where our greatest contribution to the community and to music lies and I for one will not shirk from this responsibility.

We have an opportunity right now to broaden the appeal of brass music in the minds of the public by showing how wonderful it can be, and I have seen the dynamic effects first hand of this.

If you meet someone as I have many times who declare that your playing has made their day, you will know this to be true.

Big changes come from small beginnings and from acorns mighty oaks grow,

We reap in life what we sow. Let us sow some seeds and let the community at large reap pleasure and joy from hearing the brass music that so many loved in the past and can once again come to love in the future.

It is up to us what we do now and I believe the audiences we have not yet reached will not disappoint us if we do not disappoint them.
 

2nd tenor

Well-Known Member
I fear you're correct. As an ex teacher in primary schools, I've also seen a marked swing away from brass lessons either as a class or in small groups like I once used to see. Now, it's all guitars or, worse, Ukeleles, and keyboards.
It's bound to feed through in 10 years.

Playing Brass has given me a lot of pleasure, both as a teenager and as a returning adult; Trombone and Bass have been near perfect instruments for me to grow as a player but they wouldn’t be right for everyone and indeed Brass isn’t right for everyone either. Getting people playing music is what matters and, of course, once they are playing then they are building complementary and transferable skills. One of the most gifted Cornet players I know came from a Guitar playing background and took up Piano - which he was also very skilled on - to inform his Brass and Guitar playing. It’s also usual for MD’s to be able Pianists as well as Brass players.

For some reason Brass Instruments are expensive yet Ukes, Guitars and Keyboards can be both very reasonably priced and more tolerant of poor care than Brass. Brass instruments - particularly Trombones and Tubas - can also be overly large and difficult for primary school age children to hold, operate and move around. Ukes, Keyboards and Guitars use chords in producing music, are helpfully quieter than Brass and can accompany singing; they arguably are better music teaching instruments than Brass and to my mind teaching and motivation to play must come before historic choices of instrument.

It’s easy to say that Brass is best and all else is second rate or worse. However the most successful professional musicians don’t play Brass, they play Keyboard and Guitar. The Beatles also played Uke too, they used the Uke as both a performance instrument and one on which to develop songs and tunes prior to moving them onto performance on the Guitar. If logic is applied then I find it impossible to look at Guitars, Keyboards and Ukes as worse choices than Brass instruments.

Brass, of course, is what we love and Brass playing in a group can produce fantastic music. My own favourite Brass group is the Quintet rather than Band and contesting leaves me cold, but others love contesting and for some folk anything less than a full Band is only part complete. We’re all a little different and I think it best for children - and adults too - to be encouraged to play an instrument without thought of much more than: what brings them joy; who’s actually available to teach students; what’s affordable; and what’s educational?

What will feed through in ten - or other - years time? Well nothing if we fail to get the young playing some musical instruments and possibly something if we do. The something will be able to read music, have some music theory knowledge and have some idea of playing music with others. At that point it’s up to us as Bandsmen and Bandswomen to attract and persuade people to give Brass a try, people who can already play an instrument well are usually able to pick up Brass quite quickly and they bring with them welcome knowledge and attitudes.
 
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