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The 4BR Spotify Playlist No. 1
Classic Black Dyke Mills

4BR launches a new feature to enjoy — starting with classic tracks from the era of Black Dyke Mills Band.


4BR is launching an exciting new addition to our regular features with our very own ‘Spotify Playlist’ of bands and artists in performance for you to enjoy.

We will be featuring selections of our own, as well as from guests, and explaining why the tracks have been chosen.

To kick things off, classic tracks from those on Spotify from the most famous brass band in the world – and from a time when they were still called Black Dyke Mills. 

Note: You will need a Spotify account to listen to the full tracks. Not a Spotify user? Sign up for a FREE account.

Playlist link: Classic Black Dyke Mills

Our choices

Some will be familiar - some not – depending on your age and your LP or CD collection. ‘Queensbury’ might well be the most famous signature march in the banding world, but it is still surprising to hear the way in which it has been interpreted by the band’s MDs and players over the eras. 

Then there is a chance to hear how test-pieces and ‘selections’ used to be played; with Frank Wright’s famous arrangement of ‘Benvenuto Cellini’, on which the band won the World Championship title with in 1970, and ‘Nabucodonosor’ - a standard of many a bandstand concert programme of the 1960s and 70s. 

With the debate about the quality of test-piece selections currently raging, we also get a timely reminder of the beauty (and inherent difficulties) of ‘Variations for Brass Band’ by Vaughan Williams, the much under-rated ‘Sinfonietta for Brass Band’ by Gordon Langford, and the almost criminally ignored ‘Symphonic Music’ by Paul Huber.

Black Dyke Mills has had its fair share of iconic soloists over the years - none more so than James Shepherd and Philip McCann. Both can be enjoyed in their pomp with ‘Napoli’ and ‘The Maids of Cadiz’ respectively, whilst the stylistic mark Don Lusher made on the modern generation of trombonists can be heard with a sublime performance of Langford’s ‘Rhapsody for Trombone’.

And to add just a tasty bit of ubiquitous contrast - ‘Cornet Carillon’ and Faure’s ‘Pavane’: Reminders of an age when not everything had to be crash, bang, wallop to make a musical impression on the mind...

Thundersley Brass Band - Visit the Vulcan - Open Day

Sunday 19 August • London Southend Airport, Southend-on-Sea, Essex SS26YU

Ibstock Brick Brass - Ibstock Country Fair

Sunday 19 August • Ibstock Showground. Pretoria Road. Ibstock. Leicestershire LE676LN

Black Dyke Band - St Wilfrid's Church, Harrogate

Saturday 1 September • Duchy Rd, Harrogate HG1 2EY

Contest: 166th British Open

Saturday 8 September • Broad Street, Birmingham. B1 2EA

Black Dyke Band - Brass on Sunday Gala Concert, Birmingham

Sunday 9 September • Broad St, Birmingham B1 2EA

Witney Town Band

August 19 • A friendly 4th section band based in West Oxfordshire require Front row cornet, Second Horn and Percussion. We rehearse from 7:30 - 9.30pm pm every Tuesday at Witney Methodist Church, High Street, Witney, Oxfordshire, OX28 6HG.

Elland Silver Band

August 17 • Are seeking a Repiano Cornet Player. This is a fantastic opportunity for an experienced or talented young player to join one of Yorkshire's progressive championship section bands.

Crewe Brass

August 17 • Crewe Brass seek Eb and Bb bass, Euphonium and Baritone players. We are a friendly 1st Section Band and perform at a variety of events (including contests) under the baton of our MD Matt Pithers. Rehearsals are every Friday at 7.45pm in Shavington, Crewe.

Martin Heartfield

Conductor, Adjudicator, Educationalist