A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 26. Toccata in D Minor

SECOND ENCORE: J.S. Bach’s seminal organ tune, in brass band form For the final door on this year’s East of the M60 Advent Calendar, we have decided to give you a right corker of a piece. Originally written for organ, this tune by Johann Sebastian Bach is one of his best known works.

Christmas Day On The Buses, Greater Manchester, 1986

Was 1986 the last year when Greater Manchester had an extensive bus network on Christmas Day? For many carless households, leaving the house on Christmas Day is nigh-on impossible. As a rule of thumb, it is assumed that many people spend Christmas Day at home. They are more likely to open presents, get entangled with…

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 25. Santa Claus-trophobia

ENCORE: Sandy Smith’s Christmas medley Well, the people have spoken, and Christmas Day Means Christmas Day. As an extra to the previous 24 Advent Calendar windows, there is only one Christmas medley which depicts The Most Wonderful Time of the Year.

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 24. Procession to the Minster

If you really want to finish a brass band concert in style, this is the piece! After 23 days, we have come to the end of our Brass Band Advent Calendar. If you have followed all the windows, each and every one was chosen to make for The Mother of All Brass Band Concerts. For…

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 23. MacArthur Park

Grimethorpe Colliery Band’s performance of Richard Harris’ most famous song If you are familiar with wedding DJs in the 1970s and 1980, there was always one song that the disc jockey left on the turntable whilst having a fag or a [censored]. The full version of Don Maclean’s American Pie is one example; another is…

Tameside’s Christmas and New Year Day’s Bus Service Updates

Details of Christmas and New Year’s Day bus services in Tameside and surrounding area for 2018/19 With only days to go till Christmas Day, it is that time again on East of the M60. It’s our look at what we are about to receive bus-wise over the yuletide period. In a nutshell, that means no…

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 22. Czardas

Martin Wilson’s trombone solo with Whitburn Band For our 22nd Advent Calendar window, we have for your very eyes a vintage trombone solo. Taken from a 1982 edition of BBC Television’s Best of Brass, we see Martin Wilson performing in front of a live audience in The Assembly Rooms, Derby.

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 21. Don’t Stop Me Now

Having a good time? Not long till Christmas now… Queen’s back catalogue and brass band music: it is amazing how the two art forms work so well together. Could Freddie Mercury have been the next Roy Newsome had he landed in Leeds/Bradford Airport instead of Heathrow? Strictly speaking, the use of popular music as a…

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 20. Toccata from Suite Gothique

Leon Boellman’s classic, arranged by the legendary Eric Ball For our twentieth Advent Calendar door, there are no half measures in this piece. Originally written for organ, this one has held its own as a brass banding favourite. Whether performed as a whole or in part, it never fails to make the hairs of the back of your neck stand up on…

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 19. Deep Harmony

A legendary hymn performed by a great band As we may have mentioned in countless concert reviews, brass bands and hymns are virtually intertwined. For many music lovers, nothing else will do. This rendition of Deep Harmony might prove your point.

A Late 1980s Ewing School Christmas

The joys of Christmas at the Ewing School, West Didsbury, as recalled by yours truly 28 years later Back in 2010, a post entitled The Ghost of Christmas Discos Past took an affectionate look at junior school discos and other Christmas activities. Most of which was inspired by my brief spell at Yew Tree Junior…

A Brass Band Advent Calendar: 18. Breezin’ Down Broadway

Lights, camera, action, and a decent little medley arranged by Goff Richards Everything about this medley is appealing. So much so that Goff Richards’ whistle-stop tour through Broadway is a boon for any film or theatrically themed concert.