The Pitman (greenwood)

alks

Member
Hi

Looking for information on the march 'The pitman' (greenwood) for a guy in my band who used to play in wigan boys band about 50-60 years ago. Have found an old audio recording on you tube (old vinyl) but cant find any copies available or reference to it anywhere else. Anyone have any ideas? He really wants to play it again and would nice to get hold of it somehow.


Al
 

vince turton

New Member
Hi .Although I can't help with any info on recordings of The Pitman march ,I was interested in your reference to Wigan Boys Club Band.
I was a member of the band from about 1955 to about 1963, under the the baton of Mr William (Billy) Haydock. I remember playing that March both at Wigan Boys and Wingates.
I wondered whether your band colleague remembers me , Vince Turton.
 

ChrisHelme

Member
Hello - I had this march on my weekly Sunday Bandstand radio show - Chris Helme - Sunday Bandstand 6 August 2017

There is a search facility on my show archive that will tell you if it is one of the 5000 + pieces I have played since 2014 - the show has been running since 2007 and I can search other files if the piece you are looking for is pre 2014. May be you would like to ask for a request on the show?

Old Silkstone Band recorded it 2004 and Wingates recorded it as well - Perspectives of Pretoria - Wingates Band - MHP1110 - Music House Productions.

Chris
 

Anno Draconis

Well-Known Member
Coppull and Standish have it, or at least used to. We used it as a kind of 'signature march' for a while when I was there... And Wingates definitely have it, because I played it on the CD Chris mentions above. Perspectives of Pretoria is on iTunes if you want to download it, I think.
 

Richard Knock

New Member
Hi .Although I can't help with any info on recordings of The Pitman march ,I was interested in your reference to Wigan Boys Club Band.
I was a member of the band from about 1955 to about 1963, under the the baton of Mr William (Billy) Haydock. I remember playing that March both at Wigan Boys and Wingates.
I wondered whether your band colleague remembers me , Vince Turton.
Hi Vince, remember you well, our first trombone player in the Yarrow River Jazzband! We went on to record several CDs, played at numerous festivals, even did a week on playing in Hungary in 1997. Sadly due to several members passing away, we now only assemble with 3 deps, if especially asked to by a former customer, last time was 2 years ago. I’ve completed 50 years with Eccleston Brass this year, and the only remaining ‘founder’. Still playing, of course!, and playing jazz every week on trumpet and clarinet with a Merseyside based band. And yes, I’ve played The Pitman more times than I can remember. Salutations - Richard Knock.
 

vince turton

New Member
Hi Vince, remember you well, our first trombone player in the Yarrow River Jazzband! We went on to record several CDs, played at numerous festivals, even did a week on playing in Hungary in 1997. Sadly due to several members passing away, we now only assemble with 3 deps, if especially asked to by a former customer, last time was 2 years ago. I’ve completed 50 years with Eccleston Brass this year, and the only remaining ‘founder’. Still playing, of course!, and playing jazz every week on trumpet and clarinet with a Merseyside based band. And yes, I’ve played The Pitman more times than I can remember. Salutations - Richard Knock.
Hi Richard. Thanks for your reply. I just wonder if you haven't got me mixed up with somebody else? Perhaps you know me because I lived in Heskin for many years, but I never had any affiliations with Eccleston band although it was just ,down the road from me. Neither do I recollect the Yarrow River Jazzband.I have however played jazz professionally for many many years and was associated with the Vintage Syncopators and the Temperance Seven and Martin Jones Sophisticats, but as A tuba player. I do play trombone as well but only as a secondary instrument. I have my own band TubaDudes.I did have associations many years ago with the Merseysippi jazz band and George Melly and Sam Shed in the Liverpool area. BUT, all this is a long way from the Pitman march and my fond memories of Wigan Boys and Wingates band.I am really sorry but your name doesn't even ring a bell with me. Perhaps I'm going senile, but I would be really interested if you could jog my memory about how you know me etc..Perhaps you could mention the names of other members of the Yarrow River as I do recall playing in a band many years ago which at that time was just a group of blokes. There were a couple of brothers from Billinge area , and the bass player was Joe Shannon who lived in Winstanley. I must say, I'm intrigued, to say the least. Best wishes, Vince
 

vince turton

New Member
Hi Richard
I've had to rack my brain as I cannot really recollect the Yarrow River Jazzband.
Are you referring to the band that had two brothers from Billinge, I think, and JOe Shannon on bass? I did play a couple of gigs with them.
When I got your message I thought the connection was perhaps Eccleston as I lived in Heskin for a few years, although I had no connection with Eccleston Band. There was a lad in The Warings who played cornet with them.
I played jazz professionally for many years, but mainly playing tuba. I did have some connections with the Merseysippi Jazz band in Liverpool and through them with George Melly and Sam Shed, when I was involved in The Vintage Syncopators and the Temperance Seven.
This us a long way from The Pitman March and happy memories of playing it at Wigan Boys Band and Wingates! The Boys Band also played every year for Eccleston Parish Church walking days. We used to play Westward Ho for the cows, as that was our main audience out in the fields, Happy Days!
If the Yarrow River band is who I think it is, I'd love to hear any news.
Regards,
Vince
P.S. give my regards to Carl Mercer.
 

Richard Knock

New Member
Hi Richard
I've had to rack my brain as I cannot really recollect the Yarrow River Jazzband.
Are you referring to the band that had two brothers from Billinge, I think, and JOe Shannon on bass? I did play a couple of gigs with them.
When I got your message I thought the connection was perhaps Eccleston as I lived in Heskin for a few years, although I had no connection with Eccleston Band. There was a lad in The Warings who played cornet with them.
I played jazz professionally for many years, but mainly playing tuba. I did have some connections with the Merseysippi Jazz band in Liverpool and through them with George Melly and Sam Shed, when I was involved in The Vintage Syncopators and the Temperance Seven.
This us a long way from The Pitman March and happy memories of playing it at Wigan Boys Band and Wingates! The Boys Band also played every year for Eccleston Parish Church walking days. We used to play Westward Ho for the cows, as that was our main audience out in the fields, Happy Days!
If the Yarrow River band is who I think it is, I'd love to hear any news.
Regards,
Vince
P.S. give my regards to Carl Mercer.
Hi again Vince, I remember you lived in the house just at the entrance to The Warings, I think maybe you came to only one or two of the early rehearsals we had with the Yarrow River. Joe Shannon was our banjo player until he sadly died suddenly about 2 years after we started, his son Pete also sat in on trumpet. Joe lived in Wigan, Gary Holland played electric bass and was on our first recording. The 2 brothers may have been Geoff Billington and his brother who I believe are still playing. It was late 1986/early 1987 that the YRJB was formed so it would have been probably about then. Memories get misty with time, mine especially, so maybeI’m wrong, but for some reason that’s what my memory prompts me! I’ve been doing quite a lot of gigs with Derek Galloway on trombone, He is I believe the current vocalist with the ‘Temps’. The lad in the Warings was Dougie Blackledge who was eventually Eccleston’s MD for a while, then he went on to play with Black Dyke. I’ll pass on your message to Carl. Regards, Richard.
 

vince turton

New Member
Hi Richard.Yes that's correct Joe did play banjo.I didn't know his son played trumpet..Joe lived in Winstanley, in fact we've kept in touch with Val his wife ever since (Christmas cards etc.). I don't rememberGary, but yes it was the Billington brothers. Did one of them play valve trombone? It was long before 1986 when I was involved and perhaps the band didn't have a name at that point.
Derek is a very old friend of mine and has been front man in the Temps for many years.We were together for many years in the Vintage Syncopators where he played trombone. Ive got many anecdotes about some of our adventures. Our friend Ian Howarth, owned the royalty rights of the Temps, unfortunately he died , almost a hermit, many years ago. Great shame wonderful drummer. A lot of the North west jazz gliteratti were part of our 'gang' including Johnny Tucker and Willie Entwistle, Colin Turner Ian McCannand others who are still around the jazz scene and most ended up playing in the Temps..
Yes I remember, Dougie Blackwell. He did well in the brass band world, I'm pleased to hear.
Whilst I lived in Heskin, I spent about three years playing trombone in a folk rock band based in Leyland called Old Pequliar Very popular band always booked about two years in advance. Then I did a stint on trombone in the brass section of a soul and rock roll band.Anything to earn a Bob or two!
Please give my love to Derek.
It's a small world Richard.
I still keep in touch with events in the brass band world through Facebook.
Presumably the 'Pitman' March is still being performed, after all that.
Kind regards,
Vince
 

Richard Knock

New Member
Really interesting discourse Vince. Derek is depping with the Tuxedo band in Wallasey next Thursday, he and I played every week there together for several years. Unfortunately with Dereks poor eyesight preventing driving, his wife Trish who drove him everywhere ‘had a fall’ last year and this has restricted his visits to the Tuxedo band in Wallasey, he’s there this week, but I’m away in Bilbao at present. I think he and I have spoken to each other about you in the past. I’ve done some gigs with his band at the Railway in Sale over the last couple of years. I’ve also played with Colin Turner in the Lancaster area, it is indeed a small world. In honour of my uniquely long membership of Eccleston band, they appointed me band ‘President’ this year, still not sure what it means, but I do feel honoured! What a wonderful world this world of music is! All down to ‘The Pitman’ Cheers, Richard.
 

vince turton

New Member
Hi Richard, I didn't mention your longevity at Eccleston Band, but 50 years service is a magnificent achievement. Congratulations on that and your elevation to President.
It's really odd that I never had any association with Eccleston Band and also that I did not know that there was a fellow jazzer involved. Mind you, I was very busy gigging 5 or 6 nights a week all over the place and having played 15 years in Brass bands, I was a bit fed up with it.
Do you also live in the Eccleston area?
I notice on Facebook that Colin does a bit of work in the North Lancs area and I wondered if he now lives up there. He used to live in the Salford area. I've got a few anecdotes about Colin too.
I didn't know about Derek's eyesight problems. Does he still play trombone? Ask him about The Whistler and his Dog next time you see him, I'll be interested to know what his recollections of that are. Then I'll explain to you why I am asking.
I occasionally get asked to dep.with Brass bands locally and I have played both euph and EEb occasionally with Shepards band in York. The conductor at that time was Tim Oldroyd who is now a main director of Geneva Music Instruments.I am a very good friend of Simon Miller the sales manager at Geneva.
Did you ever come across Willie Entwistle, a very talented multi instrumentalist? Based in Wigan.
He is great friends with Colin and I know that they have played together in bands recently.
Unfortunately I think Willie has had some health issues this year.
Regarding The Pitman I still don't have any answers to the original question but it has lead to some amazing coincidences.
Kind regards
Vince
 

Richard Knock

New Member
Yes, on The Hawthorns, bought the house before it was built in 1966, when we got married. I was born and raised in Kent, went to sea at 16, and met my wife on a train, going to Glasgow to join a ship. Continued working for the company in a shore based capacity but still travelling a lot until redundancy/retirement in 1993, since which I’ve devoted my time mainly to music, but also to flying gliders at the gliding club near Chipping. Ever come across Graeme Alexander? He’s a big band drummer and also a flying instructor at the club. I just wonder how small this world is! I’ll follow up some of your leads when I get home next week - regards- Richard.
 

vince turton

New Member
Cheers Richard.
I was married in 1966 too! Coincidence again?
Sorry I don't know Graeme Alexander. I have done some big band stuff but only locally.
I'm trying to remember the Hawthorne?
We left in 1987 so it's a long time ago.
My wife will remember.
Enjoy your holiday.Hope your not with Thomas Cook!
Look forward to hearing more when you get back.
Vince
 

Richard Knock

New Member
Hi Vince, I’m now back from Bilbao, busy rehearsing for the Dewsbury contest —- I did pass on your regards to Carl, and he reciprocates his to you. Just for further information, the line up with the Yarrow River was me tpt, John Holt tmb. Mike Kemp clt, Joe Shannon bjo. Gary Holland bass, Stan Summers pno. Alan Wilkinson dms. You knew Joe, did you know John Holt? He’s still playing, and he used to play with Hogarth’s many years ago. Mike, Joe, and Stan all passed away some years ago, and the band personnel settled down for many years with Me, John, Mike,
Wilf Jenkinson bjo. Doug Wall bass. and Arthur Taberner, dms. We went to a major festival in Szekesfehervar (Chorley’s twin in Hungary) in 1997, sponsored by Chorley council. It was a busy and most enjoyable week in which we appeared on local TV. Simon Goulding was our bass player on that gig, he went on to tour with Joe Longthorne, and Freddie Starr, he lives in Coppull. There is now only me and John left of the original gang, we have got together with ‘deps’ To play when specially requested by old customers, but realistically, it isn’t the same band that it was. We played regularly for years at Keswick, Llangollen, and Marsden Jazz festivals, and made a number of recordings, but we didn’t survive as long as Eccleston Brass! Salutations, Richard.
 

Richard Knock

New Member
Vince, I’ve just dug up my record of the YRJB which I kept from our formation in Dec 1986..We started regular Monday night ‘rehearsals’ at the Towneley Arms in Chorley in March ‘87 with Steve Eccles on trombone. You replaced Steve in April, and you introduced Joe Shannon to the band. You left in July, when John Holt joined. So there’s the connection joining up the parts. Jog your memory? Cheers - R
 

vince turton

New Member
Hi Richard.I hope you had a great holiday and are back refreshed and thanks for your potted history of the Yarrow River Jazzband.I Can honestly say that other than Joe Shannon I do not recollect the other names. This is not surprising, because I was not really involved in the Trad Jazz scene locally, but more in the commercial scene regionally and nationally.
You make no mention of the brothers Billington,so I'm now scratching my head to remember how and why I was associated with them? There was a connection with Joe somehow.
The jazz scene is unfortunately dying a desth. As you say, all The protagonists are dying off and so are the audiences and there aren't lots of up and coming youngsters interested enough The likes of Tuba Skinny are an exception, and may be the roots of a revival.
I played at Leeds Jazz Club last night but looking at the general age of the audience, I wonder how much longer that will survive (or, indeed me). I am glad to see that the brass band scene is not suffering the same fate.
All the best,
Vince
 

vince turton

New Member
Hi Richard. Our messages crossed. Yes that does jog my memory and fits in.I knew Joe originally because both our sons were born with serious heart problems and We were both in the same support group. He introduced me , as I recall, to the band, not the other way round. I remembered that we played in a pub in Chorley which must be the Townely Arms you mentioned. The reason I didn't continue was because I moved to Yorkshire a bit later that year. Still can't remember where and how the Billington brothers were involved.Happy days!
Vince
 

Richard Knock

New Member
Thanks Vince, I was beginning to wonder if my memory was failing even more than it is! We were ‘young men’ then, hell’s bells! I’m 80 in December (like most of the fans!) just keep taking the pills, and above all Keep playing!
 
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