I joined The Delph Youth Band with some reluctance in the summer of 1974 because my sisters wanted to join and it was all of us or none. We were given a choice of instruments… Cornet, Horn, Trombone or Euphonium, I chose the Euphonium.
For the first year I struggled to make the instrument sound anything like it should, both my sisters making rapid progress. The turning point was being told to put feeling into the music by my Dad who played me Elgar’s Enigma Variations, which still remains one of my favourite pieces of music.
Further inspiration came, not from a Euphonium player but from a Soprano Cornet player… the late, great, Brian Evans who played with a superb sweet tone coupled with bucket loads of emotion and expression. I have tried to emulate this in my own playing ever since first hearing him play.
I progressed to the Delph Band in 1977 and to the Solo Euphonium chair in 1978 where I have remained ever since.
Obvious contesting high points have been winning the national finals in 1980 and 2010 but I play for pleasure and being part of the Delph Band for the best part of 40 years has given me lots of that.
I couldn’t have continued banding without the support I get from my wife Linda and a special moment was having the Band play at our Wedding at Christ Church Denshaw in the Village where I was born.
I was at one stage known as “The Euphonium player with the long hair”. More recently I have been described as “The one with the expressive eyebrows”. Hopefully some of the emotion and expression is also heard in my playing.
Playing for Delph Band remains a pleasure, we have good players, a friendly atmosphere and we work as a team to produce the best, most musical performance we can under excellent Musical Direction.