Why Dobcross Silver Band offered a blockbusting programme one Sunday in Boarshurst
In a previous life, many British Meccas were shrines to the silver screen. Instead of “Clickety Click, 66…”, the dulcet tones of Humphrey Bogart, Yul Brynner, Judy Garland, and Audrey Hepburn entranced their paying punters. Back then they had names like Ritz, Empire, Roxy, Plaza, Rex, Gaumont, or Palladium. Many had an air of luxury, a world away from the front room of a typical working-class home. Some, less upmarket, had nicknames like ‘Bug Hut’; instead of tip-up seats, there would be benches at the front.
The cinema, for the best part of two to three hours gave us an escape from the home. At one time a full service programme would have had a newsreel, a supporting ‘B’ movie, local advertisements, and the main feature (with an interval). Today, about 30 minutes of adverts and trailers; a bloke with a Home Counties accent telling you to switch off your mobile phones, and the film itself. With change from a £20 note instead of a shilling.
Over at The Mecca of Brass Banding, Dobcross Silver Band offered us a joyous diversion from the haunted fish tank. On Sunday they eschewed a traditional programme in favour of one inspired by the small screen and the big screen. A packed house at Boarshurst Band Club didn’t only see the senior band. During the interval, they were treated to a mini concert by the Dobcross Swing Band. After their trio of pieces they played another two pieces with Dobcross Silver Band.
Dobcross Silver Band with Grenville Moore at the helm aim to return to the Third Section. After struggling to find personnel, their form had suffered lately. With a solid base there is potential for a return to higher echelons of brass. The Senior Band is supported by their Swing Band.
As well as their Oscar winning performances, both Swing and Silver bands played in front of the Boarshurst Empire’s big screen. This was used to project film clips which corresponded to each piece.
All in all it was a good night. The only things missing that night were choc ices (which they could have shifted plenty of that night) and the Pearl and Dean theme.
First Half (Dobcross Silver Band):
- Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (plus sequels): Soul Bossanova (Quincy Jones, arr. Andrew Duncan);
- Sister Act: I Will Follow Him (Franck Pourcel, arr. Frank Bernaerts);
- Black Beauty: Galloping Home (Denis King, arr. William Relton);
- Jurassic Park: Main Theme from Jurassic Park (John Williams, arr. Frank Bernaerts);
- The Mission: Gabriel’s Oboe (Ennio Morricone, arr. David Bertie);
- The Last of the Mohicans: The Gael (Trevor Jones, arr. Andrew Duncan).
I N T E R M I S S I O N
Dobcross Swing Band:
- Rocky: Gonna Fly Now (Bill Conti, arr. Rieks van der Velde);
- Hope Floats: Make You Feel My Love (Bob Dylan, arr. Gavin Somerset);
- The Jungle Book: I Wanna Be Like You (The Monkey Song) (Richard M. Sherman/Robert B. Sherman, arr. John Glenesk Mortimer).
Dobcross Silver and Dobcross Swing Bands:
- Forrest Gump: Feather Theme (Alan Silvestri, arr. Sandy Smith);
- The Rock: Theme from The Rock (Hans Zimmer, arr. Glenesk Mortimer).
I N T E R M I S S I O N A N D R A F F L E D R A W
Second Half (Dobcross Silver Band):
- Mission: Impossible: Theme from Mission: Impossible (Lalo Schifrin, arr. Alan Fernie);
- The Jazz Singer: Love on the Rocks (Neil Diamond, arr. Philip Sparke);
- Out Of Africa: Theme from Out Of Africa (John Barry, arr. Darrol Barry);
- The Jungle Book: The Bare Necessities (Terry Gilkyson, arr. Leigh Baker);
- Paint Your Wagon: Wand’rin’ Star (Alan J. Lerner/Frederick Loewe, arr. S. Duro);
- Carousel: You’ll Never Walk Alone (Richard Rodgers/Oscar Hammerstein II, arr. Darrol Barry).
- The Blues Brothers: Everybody Needs Somebody to Love (Jerry Wexler/Bert Berns/Soloman Burke, arr. Alan Fernie).
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First Half: Dobcross Silver Band
For our first piece of the night we took ourselves back to a mythical version of 1967. Or 1997 when the first Austin Powers film, Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery was a surprise summer hit. Its most famous theme throughout the Austin Powers franchise is Soul Bossanova by Quincy Jones. This, as with subsequent pieces was accompanied with clips from the appropriate film. In this case, various snippets from International Man of Mystery, The Spy Who S*****d Me, and Goldmember. For that piece they put the ‘ver’ into Silver.
From the somewhat risqué to the more solemn, we consoled ourselves with singing nuns. Or rather Whoopi Goldberg, Maggie Smith and Co. in Sister Act. This time with the film’s best known song I Will Follow Him. Before the film’s release, Little Peggy March and Rosemary Clooney enjoyed success with the song penned by Franck Pourcel. Once more, they couldn’t get out of the habit of playing another fine piece.
Our third piece was inspired by the small screen: this time, London Weekend Television’s adaptation of Black Beauty. With the LWT ident to kick things off with, Dobcross Silver Band played the programme’s iconic theme tune. That of Denis King’s Galloping Home. Before being a composer in his own right he was a member of The King Brothers – hailed as Britain’s earliest boy band. Before then, he used to sing and play a banjolele at children’s matinees – at the age of six.
After a thoroughbred performance this was followed by the performance of a John Williams piece. Instead of horses we turned to dinosaurs; more precisely, the theme from Jurassic Park. Based on the Michael Crichton book with the same name, it spawned a number of sequels. These included The Lost World and, more recently, Jurassic World. Once again another good performance.
Our next piece of this half came a beautiful piece that was overlooked by many filmgoers. That of Gabriel’s Oboe, as used in The Mission, a 1986 film starring Robert de Niro and Jeremy Irons. The film is based on the experiences of a Jesuit missionary in South America. On Sunday night, Dobcross Silver Band’s rendition won many new friends.
Before our first intermission in “the concert of three halves” (Grenville Moore’s words), we closed with a piece from The Last of the Mohicans. The piece in question is The Gael by Dougie MacLean. Before penning The Gael he was a folk singer with The Tannahill Weavers. The Scottish sounding theme was set to a Lego reconstruction of the 1992 film. A good finish for the interval.
Dobcross Swing Band
Before the talkies took over from silent movies, the cinema organ fulfilled two purposes. One was to add a soundtrack and sound effects to the film. Another, as a form of entertainment for the interval. Fulfilling this role in 2018 at the Boarshurst Empire was Dobcross Swing Band.
The first of their three pieces came from a real blockbuster: the first five Rocky films. Enter the Swing Band’s rendition of Gonna Fly Now, as used in the very first film from 1976. A very good start to their mini concert.
Their second piece was Make You Feel My Love, a 1997 song written by Bob Dylan. In more recent times, this was a big hit for Adele. In 1998 it was covered by Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood for the Hope Floats soundtrack album. The film, starring Sandra Bullock and co-starring Harry Connick Jr., is a rom-com where a relationship is threatened by an appearance on a talk show. More people would know Bob Dylan’s song for Adele’s cover. Once again, another good performance.
To round off their mini concert, they played the first of two songs (within the whole concert) from The Jungle Book. This time the Sherman Brothers’ I Wanna Be Like You (oft erroneously referred to as The King of the Swingers). Also known as The Monkey Song it is a most lively piece. Needless to say, the Swing Band captured the piece’s joviality.
Dobcross Silver Band and Dobcross Swing Band
For the next two pieces we had a joint effort with both the Swing and Silver Bands. First off the blocks was the Feather Theme by Alan Silvestri. This was the main theme tune in the Tom Hanks film Forrest Gump, another hit among 1990s film buffs. A nice, calm tune. This offered a contrast to the next piece which awaited us.
Our next piece was intense, melodic, and compelling at the same time. As you may have guessed, we are talking about a film theme by Hans Zimmer (him of Inception, Pirates of the Caribbean, Backdraft, and Going For Gold themes fame). Enter the main theme from The Rock. Instead of trying to escape from a Bury shopping centre, the 1996 film sees our heroes escaping Alcatraz Island. With a massed band, a very good piece to add to the programme.
Second Half: Dobcross Swing Band
After the second, more pithy intermission (and the raffle), came Lalo Schifrin’s second most famous theme tune. The theme music to Mission: Impossible. Younger ears may associate Schifrin’s theme with the film franchise starring Tom Cruise. It was also used in the television series starring Peter Graves. To reassure anyone in the audience as to whether The Pink Drum of Destiny self destructed in 30 seconds, it didn’t. Dobcross Silver Band marked their second half return with a good start.
The next piece came from a remake which flopped dismally on its initial release. As time progressed, Neil Diamond’s remake of The Jazz Singer faired better on video release and on television. Its soundtrack album was a huge hit, with Hello Again, Coming to America, and Love On The Rocks its best known works. The third piece inspired Dobcross Silver enough to add this to their programme. With clips of Neil Diamond for good measure.
This was followed by Darrol Barry’s arrangement of the theme from Out Of Africa. John Barry’s theme is the icing on the cake for many filmgoers. Out Of Africa is a memoir of Danish author Karen Blixen, which refers to her life on a coffee plantation. Once more, another bit of fine playing from our star turn.
For the fourth piece of this half we returned to The Jungle Book. This time with a classic arrangement of a Walt Disney piece, The Bare Necessities. At previous Boarshurst concerts, Leigh Baker’s arrangement have previously been performed by Eb Bass soloists. As a whole band effort – complete with clips of Baloo, Bagheera, and Mowgli – it worked very well and got us all tapping our feet.
This was followed by a piece that was sung by Lee Marvin. Wand’rin’ Star was a UK Number One single in 1970, which featured in Paint Your Wagon. Though the film was released in 1969, the musical which it came from was released in 1951. After its premiere in Broadway, it was premiered two years after in London’s West End at Her Majesty’s Theatre.
To round off the concert, we had another classic from stage and screen; Number One at The Kop since Gerry and the Pacemakers’ version topped the UK singles chart. No prizes for guessing which song this is: You’ll Never Walk Alone. The song features in Carousel, a musical which made its Broadway début in 1945. Written by Rodgers and Hammerstein it was adapted from an earlier play by Ferenc Molnár (Liliom). It has been hailed as The Best Musical of the 20th Century by Time Magazine.
The film version followed in 1956 starring Gordon MacRae and Shirley Moore. With the likelihood of an encore, the final scenes of Dobcross Silver Band’s concert was met with great applause.
To finish the concert properly, we ended with Everybody Needs Somebody to Love. Which by far, next to Rawhide, is one of the most famous songs from The Blues Brothers. If that, and most of Dobcross Silver Band’s concert didn’t have you leaving on a high, what would have done?
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Our friends at Dobcross Silver Band gave us all a very good, easy going concert with a tight programme. Just the sort of thing you would have happily enjoyed on a Bank Holiday weekend. The added bonus of visual projections enhanced the concert thanks to good synchronisation and carefully chosen clips.
Grenville Moore was pithy, informative, and humorous at the same. His scholarly and concise manner engaged the audience and kept the programme to a tight schedule. Just ten minutes shy of two hours including a bonus feature from Dobcross Swing Band. We wish Dobcross Silver Band every success in their endeavours and hope they have a good Whit Friday.
Dobcross Silver Band’s and Dobcross Swing Band’s concert was seen by a live audience at the Boarshurst Band Club on the 06 May 2018.
- Starring: Dobcross Silver Band;
- Co-starring: Dobcross Swing Band;
- Musical Director: Grenville Moore;
- Front of House warm-up: Stuart Vallantine;
- Catering: Linda Finan;
- Wardrobe: David Ashworth;
- Security: Vernon Timmins.
Duration: 1 hour 50 minutes.
Next week at Boarshurst Band Club…
Months after welcoming Littleborough Training Band to Boarshurst Band Club, Littleborough Band shall be heading their way on the 13 May 2018. Did you know that the band’s first ever public engagement was for a flood relief concert?
As always, an 8.00pm start with doors open from 7.00pm. Admission is £4.00 (or £3.00 for concessions and Boarshurst Band Club members).
- 180: Greenfield [Clarence Hotel] – Lees – Oldham – Hollinwood – Manchester [Oldham Street];
- 350: Ashton-under-Lyne – Mossley – Greenfield – Uppermill – Dobcross – Delph – Waterhead – Oldham.
Alight at the former Greenfield Conservative Club. Both services operated by First Greater Manchester.
Twitter details: @boarshurstband; #SundayBrass.
S.V., 09 May 2018.