The tour continues…

Last night (15th February) the Youth Band went out from their hotel for a look round Disneyland Paris before heading back for food.

The band in front of their hotel.
The band at their Hotel.

After a long overnight drive down from York and an early morning ferry ride, the order of the day was Pizza and an early night. You do wonder how much sleep they got though!

Pizzas for the band
That’s the basses sorted for their tea then…

Today saw our Youth Band heading into Paris where they first went to explore Sacré Coeur before heading over to play in the Jardin du Luxembourg which is on the edge of the Latin Quarter. The park boats a spectacular bandstand which sees a variety of musical performances through the year. This time round, the sounds of Yorkshire Brass added to the atmosphere.

Check out these links to see the band performing in the Jardin du Luxembourg.

Youth Band head for France

Youth Band Ready or the Off
Youth Band all ready to set off.

The Shepherd Group Youth Brass Band are off on tour again. They all congregated at the bandroom at midnight on Valentines Day and boarded a coach heading for France. They arrived in Dover in the early hours of February 15th and then headed off to Calais.

When The Boat Comes In?
When the boat comes in…

The band will spend the 15th recovering from he overnight journey before heading off to play in two amazing locations. They will play in Le Jardin du Luxembourg on February 16th before heading to play on the main stage at Disneyland Paris on the 17th. Following that is the long journey back before the member os of the Senior Band accompanying them take the stage with Black Dyke Band on the 19th.

Keep an eye on the website for more updates on the concerts and what the players get up ti in their downtime!

Youth band players watch a clown
Is Craig still working on the boats?
Players stand on deck with the White Cliffs behind them.
Au revoir Dover!
Players on deck en route for Calais.
We’re on our way!
Players brave the cold for a selfie.
Bit cool for selfies!
Richard and some of the players looking at a model of the ferry.
I wonder if I could dock that at Naburn?

This trip is a highlight of the Youth Band calendar. We try to head out on a concert tour every year, it gives the players the chance of performing on prestigious stages and broadens their horizons. If you have children who would like to learn to play a brass instrument, then please reach out to us; contact details are available in the links above.

Christmas Concert Success

Once again, all the bands came together over 2 nights to entertain packed audiences in the Joseph Rowntree Theatre. Both evenings were started off by Brass Roots who once again impressed everyone with their playing and showed the audience how well they are coming along as new players.

The Academy Band were next perform followed by the Youth Band. Both performances demonstrate that the future of the band is safe and that there is a wealth of musical talent coming along through our ranks.

Next up were the Concert Band, although Mike was not at the helm this time. Everyone will know Mike had a heart attack earlier this year and had to go up to Middlesborough for bypass surgery. He is now well on the road to recovery and we are assured his jokes will be be back and will be as bad as ever. One of the highlights of the Concert Band set had to be the superb solo played by Emerson Hampshire, they really did nail their version of Peter Grahams Away in A Manger.

The second half of the concert was over to the Senior Band and they provided an upbeat version of Christmas with a a funky big band take of God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen. Our new Principal Cornet, Sean Chandler, gave a brilliant rendition of Santa Claus is Coming to Town and the set was concluded with a finale recounting the story of the Christmas 1914 truce where Mike Pratt starred as the narrator, he really can’t stay away.

The finale saw all bands back on stage where we invoked the spirit of Christmas and Pantomime with “If I were not in Shepherds Band” arranged by the Concert Band Soprano Cornet player James McFadyen. I’m sure everyone who saw the finale will have loved the dancers who performed.

The Christmas concert is one of the highlights of the year and it was so good to have all bands back on stage together. We now look forward to 2023 and what it brings for us all. The band would like to wish all our friends and followers a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year.

Carolling and answering an appeal.

On December 21st, members of all our bands got together to play Christmas Carols for the residents of Amarna Care home in Macomb and Rowntree Lodge care home in New Earswick. This has become an annual event over the past few years and our players love giving something back to our local community. Of course, the mulled wine and mince pies are always make a welcome appearance.

This year we had another venue to add to our tour of York after we received an appeal to play for 99 year old Rowley from Heworth. Rowley has been a long standing fan of a Brass Band and of course we were happy to drop round on our way back to the band room. His neighbours were treated to an unexpected impromptu concert and came out to listen, his next door neighbour was very surprised on returning from her dog walk!

Merry Christmas everyone!

Concert Band sparkles at Knaresborogh Christmas Market

This was the first Xmas outing for the Concert Band but unfortunately without Mike Pratt conducting due to a medical problem. However our Soprano player, James McFadden, very ably took the stick at the front and did an excellent job leading the CB through 2 hours of festive music in front of a packed Market audience. The local temperature of 5 deg didn’t help greatly though.

The first half was predominantly carols with the audience being asked for their requests. Mass singing by our listeners was hugely appreciated and really set the tone for the second half after a welcome break for the players to get their breath back.

The second half was mainly Xmas music that has been in the charts and has proven very popular. This included Let It Snow, Rocking around the Christmas Tree, Last Christmas etc mixed with the odd carol or two. Jingle Bells, as always, proved very popular with our audience. 500 Miles was somehow worked into the programme, complete with audience antiphonal singing. Great! The final number was announced as a slow middle ages Christmas tune that needed to be played with due care and solemnity. That’s when the Band wholeheartedly launched into Mr Holder and Mr Lea’s Merry Christmas Everybody with wholehearted and lung busting effort. 

Gloves certainly helped with the weather!

A cold but great Christmas Concert. Organisers pleased. Audience pleased. A good collection. What could be better? Before we left we were asked to do the same job next year.

Many thanks to our senior band Baritone Player Jen for the photos.

Vacancies – BBb Bass

Following a number of signings over the past months, the band now welcomes applications for a BB Bass player to join our strong Bass Section.

We have a number of excellent Concerts planned for 2024 and beyond including another live performance of The Snowman.

What we have to offer:

  • Championship level banding 
  • Great concert-contest balance 
  • Fun contemporary music and the latest arrangements
  • Some of the best rehearsal facilities in the country
  • One of the largest banding organisations around, as recently featured in the British Bandsman 
  • A busy and lively social scene
  • Spring Festival Senior Cup, Blackpool 

The band practices on Tuesday and Friday evenings in York – however, our members travel from all over Yorkshire so lifts could most likely be arranged. 

For anymore information or an informal, confidential chat about the position, please contact Our MD Richard Wilton on 07973442249, 

Alternatively, feel free to message us directly through the bands Facebook page. 🎺🎼🎺

Please get in touch with Richard Wilton for further details.

Sponsor a mile to Disneyland

Next year, we are taking the Youth Band over to Disneyland Paris where they will represent us on the mains stage there in concert. This is a unique opportunity for our young players but is something we need your help in raising funds for.

It is 507 miles from the band room to the park, this makes a round trip of 1014 miles. Could you help the band out by sponsoring a mile? If you can help, then please click on the donate button below.

Happy Birthday Richard!

The Shepherd Group Bands came together to surprise the Senior Band MD Richard Wilton for his 50th birthday this week. On one of the few nights Richard was not in the band room, he was at home relaxing only to hear a band playing Slaidburn; not something you expect to hear in a corner of York just after tea.

Imagine these guys marching along your street!

Players from the Academy Band, Youth Band and Concert Band joined players from the Senior band to march down Richard’s street and then serenade him with Happy Birthday and Congratulations. neighbours all came out to watch and Nicola had prepared cupcakes which all the player enjoyed.

When Richard came to the band originally, he had a 5 year plan in mind, now over 12 years later the plan has grown, we have seen the introduction of the Youth band and the Senior Band have progressed to the Championship Section and are competing in the Senior Cup. All the players really appreciate the efforts Richard has put into the band and I’m sure the turnout for his birthday demonstrates that.

Happy Birthday Boss.

Happy Birthday Richard!

The Snowman Live!

Snowman Poster

If you were at the Christmas Concerts last year, you will remember the announcement that the band would be performing a live soundtrack along with the whole film of The Snowman. The classic Christmas story by Raymond Briggs.

Everything is in place for this now and there will be 2 performances taking place on December 10th 2022 at St Andrews Church Bishopthorpe, the first at 2pm and then a further performance at 6pm.

Do get your tickets ordered early, this is going to be a great experience for familes as well as for the band. The tickets can be bought from Eventbrite usung the following links

2 pm Performance

6pm Performance