CWS Manchester band.


New Member
Hi everyone, my name is Stuart Hardcastle, and I have just taken up the trombone again at the age of 66/67 after a 37 year gap. Cutting the story short as I can, I started in1961 with Besses boys Band, and after lots of different bands and orchestras joined the world famous CWS Manchester band in late 1969 sitting next to none other than Ian Richards. He was a great lad, taught me so much, and I was in awe of his ability to make his music talk or sing, dependant on his mood of the day. I have many many very fond memories of my time there, and was therefore absolutely gutted to hear of the Bands’ demise as I left in ‘82 and moved to work in London and had stopped playing. What an idiot I was. Moved back to the Manchester area Feb last year, met an old Besses boy who persuaded me to give it another go. My God, it’s so hard trying to get started again. I’m getting there with 6 days a week practising, but help from some of you guys and gals as to building stamina and the embouchure would be great. When all this Covid stuff is done with, I want to be part of a band (if I’m worthy).
Thank you.🎼🎶🎵👍

2nd tenor

Well-Known Member
Hello Stuart and welcome. This site is but a small shadow of its previous self but its archive can be very helpful and someone might pop in and offer help from time to time.

In a way now is a good time to return to Banding, well good in that there’s opportunity to regain skills and that when you do join a Band many of the members won’t have played for some time. I’m a Tuba player now but used to play Trombone, I’ve never been a good player (of anything) but I enjoy what I do - so not sure what useful advice I can give you. If you have Trombone questions then MoominDave is the local Trombone expert (played/plays in a Championship Section Band) and he’s a good sort too. Whilst you’re getting your chops back I suggest that you have a think about what Bands you might like to and might be able to join. I’d advise visiting several Bands and sitting in several rehearsals of each before deciding what’s probably right for you.

You might be able to search this map to find Bands near to you:

Edit. I should also have mentioned Vegasbound. He’s long time member here and played Trombone as a serviceman in a Military Band (so he’s somewhat skilled). IIRC he’s now back in the U.K., but prior to that he was playing in quality bands in Continental Europe.
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Active Member
Welcome back

As you no doubt have noticed the trombone world has changed massively in your absence in respect of equipment and playing demands

What is your practice routine? Have you had a lesson or two? I ask this as many things you think you used to do without thinking about you have probably forgotten so worth having an online lesson or two just to check things are correct is always worth it (and I advise this not just because I teach lol)

Keep it fun, so invest in some play along books to make a change from long tones, lip slurs scales etc learn to play in both concert pitch and brass band treble will increase the kind of musical experiences you can have

And enjoy playing the horn again


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