Monday, March 6, 2017

Brass Band Traditions

Today in class we had a guest lecture from Arfen Owen a professional tenor horn player in the Black Dyke Band and currently living in Norway, come and lectured on the origins of British Brass Bands and shared some of the music of that tradition.

He stated that brass bands became popular after the industrial revelation due to the advanced machining that could turn out higher quality instruments at lower prices.

It was also mentioned that brass bands were a way for the blue collar workers to get together after their work shift ended and do something with their time other than sit around a pub and drink all evening. In addition, the companies that these men worked for saw a chance to use the local brass band to advertise for their businesses.

One of the pieces that I really enjoyed hearing in class today was call Extreme Makeover by Johan De Meij. I loved the use of glass bottles, and the overall affects of the textures of this piece. It starts as kind of a transcription of a Tchaikovsky String quartet and then erupts into an all out virtuoisc affair for brass band. It is highly enjoyable to listen to.

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