Big Band Scene (Aug. 2017)

Patrick Billingham looks at Bader’s Big Band and requests.

 

    The Douglas Bader Foundation have announced that they are recruiting for Bader’s Big Band.  A new project.  For those under a certain age who are unaware of his heroic exploits, Douglas Bader lost both legs in an aircraft crash in 1931.  Nevertheless he was determined to continue flying.  And succeeded, becoming a fighter ace in World War II.

    Musicians who have overcome a disability are eligible to join the band.  With the aim of performing at various public and private events, as well as making a professional studio recording. The band is being created to inspire audiences and to encourage those with a disability to take up an instrument, to highlight the important role that music can play in rehabilitation and the positive ongoing benefits it can bring to those whose lives have been affected by disability.  To follow the example of Douglas Bader.

    The band will be the usual big band line-up, but consideration will be given to other instruments. As far as I know, it will be based in London.  If you are interested, or would like more information, please contact Paul Clark, 02087 488884 or email paul@douglasbaderfoundation.com.  The deadline for applications is September 1st.

    Last month, there was a good sized audience for the The Brighton Big Band with Dave ‘Sinatra’ Williams occupying the Big Band@Brunswick July slot.  This month it is the turn of The Chris Coull Big Band.  Unfortunately I can’t make it, so I hope that there will be another good turnout.  If at least forty to fifty turn up each time and buy drinks, The Brunswick should be happy to continue hosting this monthly showcase for local big bands.

    A couple of months ago, this column received a request from a versatile reeds player who had recently returned to the county and was keen to become involved in the big band scene.  Which I forwarded to the thirty or so band organisers on my mailing list.  And to my knowledge, he has received several positive responses.  

    When asked by a member of the audience if he would play a particular tune, the late, great, Ronnie Scott used to say “We don’t play requests (long pause) except when asked.”  Which seems to me a sound policy.  And one that I intend to follow.  Splitting the requests into long term and short term.  

    Long term requests would be mainly from bands.  Where, say, a long serving member of the band is moving on, and needs to be replaced.  Or the hope of not having to rely on deps for gigs because of a perceived shortage of particular instruments.  These requests would appear in the column.  As would a plea from anyone hoping to form a big band.

    Short term requests would again be mainly from bands seeking deps, especially when someone drops out at short notice.  These won’t be published in the column as most would be out of date before publication. Instead, I have email lists of musicians to whom I forward these messages.  And if you are looking for a dep, don’t forget to state the instrument as well as an email address, or phone number on which you can be contacted at any time.

    If you are a musician and would like to be included in these lists, and are not already, then please contact me on my email address below, giving your name, instrument(s), email address and phone number.  This is a free service undertaken for the benefit of jazz and jazz musicians.

 

    And now for something completely different.  A harmless diversion for the holiday season.

Here are two short extracts from different sources.  Ten years separate them.

    Apart from differences of key signature, time signature and clef, what do you notice about them?  Which do you think is the earlier?

Please email your answers to me (address below).

 

Next month:  More news and views, and hopefully, another band profile.  If you would like your band featured, and I have not already contacted you, please get in touch.  Or if there is anything else, such as gig news, or feedback on this column, that you would like me to include in September’s Big Band Scene, please send it to me by Thursday 24th August. My email address is g8aac@yahoo.co.uk. 

 

Big Band Gigs

August – early September

 † a regular monthly gig

bold italics part of a regular series

 

Wednesday 2nd August

†8:30 pm, The Fred Woods Big Band at the Horsham Sports Club, Cricketfield Road, Horsham, West Sussex RH12 1TE (01403 254628).  £2 (Club members free).

 

Thursday 3rd August

8:00 – 9:30 pm, Big Band Sound 05: The Brighton Big Band on Eastbourne Bandstand, Grand Parade, Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 3AD.  Advance bookings (01323 410611) £5/£2.50, or on the night £7/£3.50.

 

Saturday 5th August

2:00 pm, The Downsbeat Swing Band at The Ropetackle Arts Centre, Little High Street, Shoreham-by-Sea, BN43 5EG. (01273 464440)  Free entry.

 

Sunday 6th August

†12:45 – 3:00 pm, Sounds of Swing Big Band at The Horseshoe Inn Hotel, Posey Green, Windmill Hill, Herstmonceux, East Sussex BN27 4RU (02035 645225).   Free entry.

5:30 – 8:15 pm, Picnic on The Square: The Fred Woods Big Band at the Horsham Cricket and Sports Club, Cricketfield Road, Horsham, West Sussex RH12 1TE (01403 254628).  £15 in advance or £20 on the gate; email keith@ryanvehicles.com or purchase from the Club. In aid of Chestnut Tree House.  (Gates open 4 pm.)

7:30 – 10:00  pm, Big Band @Brunswick: The Chris Coull Big Band at The Brunswick, 3, Holland Road, Hove BN3 1JF (01273 733984).  Free entry with collection.

 

Tuesday 8th August

†8:00 – 10:30 pm, The Ronnie Smith Big Band at The Humming Bird Restaurant, Main Terminal Building, Shoreham Airport, West Sussex,  BN43 5FF (01273 452300).  Free entry with collection.

 

Thursday 10th August

8:00 – 9:30 pm, Big Band Sound 06: The Central Band of The Royal British Legion on Eastbourne Bandstand, Grand Parade, Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 3AD.  Advance bookings (01323 410611) £5/£2.50, or on the night £7/£3.50.

 

Sunday 13th August

†12:00 – 3:00 pm, Groovin’ High Big Band at the Ravenswood Country House Inn, Horsted Lane, Sharpethorne, West Sussex RH19 4HY, (01342 810216).   Free entry. 

2:00 – 4:00 pm, The Sussex Jazz Orchestra at the Pavilion Gardens, New Road Brighton, BN1 1 UG (01273 730712), weather permitting.  Free entry.

3:00 – 4.30 pm, The Brighton Big Band on the seafront terraces, Rottingdean, East Sussex BN2. Free admission.

3:00 pm, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, with Swing Time Jivers and Polka Dot Dolls at The Pavilion Theatre, Marine Parade, Worthing, West Sussex BN11 3PX, (01903 206206). £21.50/£19.50.

 

Thursday 17th August

8:00 – 9:30 pm, Big Band Sound 07: The Swingshift Big Band on Eastbourne Bandstand, Grand Parade, Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 3AD.  Advance bookings (01323 410611) £5/£2.50, or on the night £7/£3.50.

 

Sunday 20th August

2:00 – 5:00 pm, Tea Dance with The Maestro Big Band at Newhaven Fort, Fort Road, Newhaven, East Sussex BN9 9DS (01273 517622).   £7.50/£5.95/£4.95 etc. Families £19.95.

 

Thursday 24th August

8:00 – 9:30 pm, Big Band Sound 08: The Brighton Big Band on Eastbourne Bandstand, Grand Parade, Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 3AD.  Advance bookings (01323 410611) £5/£2.50, or on the night £7/£3.50.

 

Friday 25th August

†8:30 – 11:00 pm, The Les Paul Big Band at Patcham Community Centre, Ladies Mile Road, Patcham, Brighton BN1 8TA, £5.  For further details contact Steve (01273 509631) steven_paul1@yahoo.co.uk (Bring your own refreshments.)

 

Sunday 27th August

2:00 – 4:00 pm, The Brighton Big Band at the Pavilion Gardens, New Road Brighton, BN1 1 UG (01273 730712), weather permitting.  Free entry.

 

Thursday 31st August

8:00 – 9:30 pm, Big Band Sound 09: The Swingshift Big Band on Eastbourne Bandstand, Grand Parade, Eastbourne, East Sussex BN21 3AD.  Advance bookings (01323 410611).  £5/£2.50, or on the night £7/£3.50.

 

Saturday 2nd September

9:45 – 11:45 am, The Wacky Band at St Michael’s Hospice Summer Fair, 25 Upper Maze Hill, Saint Leonards, East Sussex TN38 0LB.  (01424 445177). 50p entrance fee to the Fair.

 

Sunday 3rd September

†12:45 – 3:00 pm, Sounds of Swing Big Band at The Horseshoe Inn Hotel, Posey Green, Windmill Hill, Herstmonceux, East Sussex BN27 4RU (02035 645225).   Free entry.

2:00 – 4:00 pm, The Brighton Big Band at the Pavilion Gardens, New Road Brighton, BN1 1 UG (01273 730712), weather permitting.  Free entry.

3:00 – 5:00 pm, Big Band Sounds at The Roebuck Inn, Lewes Road, Laughton, Lewes, East Sussex BN8 6BG, (01323 811081).   Free entry.

7:30 – 10:30  pm, Big Band @Brunswick: Terry Pack’s Trees at The Brunswick, 3, Holland Road, Hove BN3 1JF (01273 733984).  Free entry with collection.

 

Wednesday 6th September

†8:30 pm, The Fred Woods Big Band at the Horsham Sports Club, Cricketfield Road, Horsham, West Sussex RH12 1TE (01403 254628).  £2 (Club members free).

 

Thursday 7th September

†7:30 pm, The Maestro Big Band with Nicki Day at the Hope Inn, West Pier, Newhaven, East Sussex BN9 9DN (01273 515389).  Free entry.