Monthly Archives: February 2021

Rothesay Brass Band – entertaining the excursionists fresh off the paddle-steamers on the Isle of Bute

Rothesay, the main town on the Isle of Bute, became a popular tourist destination in the Victorian era. Tourists wanted entertainment and the town council initially provided professional bands for the summer season from the mainland. A local brass band … Continue reading

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Ups and Downs – the patterns of band engagements over the year

A bit of more recent history. Given the almost total lack of band engagements over the last 12 months, I thought I’d look back to when we all had full diaries and, apart from preparing for the upcoming area contests, … Continue reading

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Four unknowns to puzzle over

Perhaps the bandsman’s version of Where’s Wally? Spot the bandsmen in the crowd. It reminds me of the crush, trying to play a static piece at the Durham Miners’ Gala, on the return journey particularly, when the crowds throng the … Continue reading

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A Shifnal Band at the pub

Shifnal, Shropshire. A band standing outside the White Hart pub, c. 1905. The landlord was Charles J. Miller, who lived there with his wife Catherine, mother Susan, sister Martha, and three daughters Violet, Lily, and Rose. He took over the … Continue reading

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Lynn and Lynda – two ‘dainty’ brass musicians

Unfortunately, the full names or true identities of “Lynn and Lynda” have yet to be discovered. These two multi-instrumental brass performers appeared first as a double act in 1918. They certainly made a hit with the audiences and continued to … Continue reading

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The pig and the brass bands

A tale is told, anecdotally, in the annals of several brass bands, of a pig that was placed on a wall to listen to the music, and sometimes pass judgement on the quality of the sound. Similar to other stories … Continue reading

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