Sunday, 7 October 2012

ODBBA Training Band Concert

Got back a few hours ago from the Oxford and District Brass Band Association Training Band Concert. This was a rather nerve-racking concert for me as it was the first time I'd conducted Abbey Brass Training Band (and the first time I'd conducted in public at all). But I have to say that it was a great event.

5 training or youth brass bands took place, covering a wide-range of standards and approaches. It was lovely to see youngsters with great tone and more confident players enjoying themselves. The highlight of the event had to be the mass band though.

All the groups played Northern Festival March together! A fantastic sound, especially after only 1 hours rehearsal together (thanks Nicky for that). 3 drum kits plus a cymbal playing at once was particularly impressive. I never tire of mass bands, they are a great idea and something to behold!

Thanks to all who organised and attended the event (especially Rob). I'm already looking forward to it again next year!

Mamma Mia!

5pm last night.
I arrived home tired but happy, buzzing but relaxed.
What brought on these feelings? Mamma Mia with Jo Sercombe of course!

It was a strange feeling to walk into my own church hall and be confronted by almost 30 strangers (plus a few people that I knew). We had all gathered together to learn how to sing the songs of Abba. Having attended two of Jo's courses before, I was parrticularly excited.

After a day of singing what resulted were two wonderful songs out of a bunch of (not all) musical people, a great feeling of friendship, lots of smiles, and plenty of money for charity.

If you haven't been to any of Jo's courses before then I highly recommend them.
Just check of Jo Sercombe Vocalist on Facebook. 
I've only been home an hour and I've already booked my next one!
Hope to see you there!

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Music for Disability

I recently heard about Sunbeams, a project supported by Children in Need that helps disabled children. They aim to improve quality of life and self esteem through music.

I just love these sort of groups. I really feel that music can speak to people with disabilities. It can help children to vocalise, interact with others, or simply enjoy themselves. Playing music can also help many gain a small amount of control over their lives which is often missing.

I'd love to hear more about other groups out there that do similar things. Please do let me know if you know of any.

For more about Sunbeams click here

Thursday, 4 October 2012

50 years of Love Me Do

Today marks 50 years since 'Love Me Do' by the Beatles was released.
So let's celebrate by hearing it once again:

When was the first time you came across The Beatles?