2005 4BR Awards - Solo CD of the Year

9-Dec-2005

Some of the very best performers in the movement have released CDs this year, and all have been of fantastic quality. It's going to be a pretty difficult choice for you to make.


Introduction:

Not perhaps the greatest year for solo CD releases there has nevertheless been an eclectic selection to choose from of high quality productions. Some exceptional solo performers have put their reputations on the line and to be fair all of them come up trumps.  Repertoire has also been varied and it was nice to hear that many of the players were looking to perform new original works.

Our selection for nomination are as follows: Welsh Connection featuring David Childs; Mellow Moments featuring Iwan Williams; Virtuoso featuring Glyn Williams; Blaze featuring Richard Marshall; The Derick Kane Euphonium Album featuring Derek Kane

We have re printed our short review and given the link to read the full 4BR review of each release.

There were plenty others too: Peace featuring David Childs; Going Solo featuring Carl Saunders; Locomotion featuring Stephen Mead; Mask featuring Brett Baker and Camaraderie featuring Jonathan Kitchen on cello to name but a few.


CD cover - Welsh ConnectionWelsh Collection
David Childs (Euphonium)
Accompanied by the BAYV Band
Conductor: Robert Childs
Doyen: DOY CD200
Total Playing Time: 69.15 mins

With "Welsh Connection", his fourth solo recording, David Childs shows why he is so widely respected, not only for his technical ability but also for the all-round musicality of his playing. The programme is varied but all very accessible, including premiere recordings of Michael Ball's "Concerto for Euphonium" and Philip Sparke's "Harlequin".


CD cover - VirtuosoVirtuoso
Glyn Williams
Fodens Richardson Band
Conductor: Garry Cutt
Amadeus Recordings: CD091
Total Playing Time: 78.44

The brass band worlds equivalent of a combination of Roy Castle and James Morrison, Glyn Williams is a simply unique talent who has been thrilling audiences with his skills.

This is no party trick however as this is a performer who can produce top class performances on any of his chosen instruments from his beloved euphonium to the soprano cornet and down through the brass band range to the Eb tuba. He can even play the xylophone as well. Some player some talent.


CD cover - Mellow MomentsMellow Moments
Iwan Williams
YBS Band
Conductor: Professor David King
Egon Recordings: CD SFZ128
Total Playing Time: 64.15

A wonderful exhibition of the art of lyrical brass band flugel horn playing from the extremely talent Welshman at the YBS Band.

15 of the richest, creamiest, musically calorie laden tracks you would ever hear are performed with such understated classiness, purity of tone and sublime musicianship. You can gorge yourself like eating the best Willy Wonka box of chocolates. You know you shouldn't, but by heck it tastes fantastic and you know you deserved it.

This is mellow, chill out, take it easy and enjoy yourself music. It is that good.


CD cover - The Derick Kane Euphonium AlbumThe Derick Kane Euphonium Album
Derick Kane: Euphonium
The International Staff Band, Conducted by Stephen Cobb
Richard Phillips, Piano
SP&S Ltd: SPS 195 CD
Total playing time: 77.16 min

Produced in conjunction with the new Derick Kane Euphonium Album, this recording contains all 14 solos, with the accompaniments shared out between the International Staff Band under Stephen Cobb and Bandmaster Richard Phillips at the piano.

All the performances are of a very high quality, with exemplary piano playing from Richard and a real feeling of empathy between the two players. Highlights include Ralph Pearce's recent "Welsh Fantasy" and Chris Mallet's lively "Travelling Along".


CD cover - BlazeBlaze
Richard Marshall
Cornet/Trumpet
Grimethorpe Colliery (UK Coal) Band
Conductor: Richard Evans
Doyen Recordings: CD192
Total playing time: 72.05

A staggering series of performances from one of the brightest talents in the entire brass band movement.  This is world class playing from a world class player with a range and sheen to his tone that is just thrilling.
His technique is no less brilliant as can be heard on the fantastic title track. Never has a solo CD been so aptly named, and Richard Marshall blazes across your CD player like a comet. Highly recommended indeed.

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