Welcome to our Web Site, where we hope to keep you up to date with our aims, activities and
events, so please keep in touch through these pages and feel free to contact us at any time
Visitors are always welcome to our rehearsals which are held on the second and fourth Mondays
of each month at the Bromley Temple Salvation Army Hall, Ethelbert Road, Bromley BR1 1HU.
The SLFB is open to mature, competent players who fall into one or more of the following categories-
i) are active, retired or former Salvation Army bandsmen
ii) are members of or regular attenders at other churches
iii) are sympathetic to The Salvation Army’s ethos and are committed to the Christian faith
SLFB latest CD
A South London Celebration
‘There can be no doubt that the ‘fellowship’ band is a true success story in the life of Salvation Army music making’; so says the opening paragraph in the booklet of the South London Fellowship Band’s latest CD, A South London Celebration, and is a fair statement to make. Many areas across our Territory now have Fellowship bands in which current and former SA bandsmen, alongside friends of the Army, can meet together, play music and share in fellowship with each other.
This CD, the seventh to be released by the band since their formation 23 years ago (and the first under the leadership of Darrell Scholes), features music exclusively composed for The Salvation Army by SA musicians. From Arthur Gullidge in the 1930s to Steven Ponsford, one of the current crop of young composers, the works featured span nearly 80 years and are just a small sample of the legacy of music that The Salvation Army is justifiably proud of.
The march Southern Australia is one that, in my opinion, is not heard often enough and gets the CD off to a bright start, with tight rhythmic playing throughout. The other march on the CD is Light-bringer by Martin Cordner. In recent years, Martin has shown a real gift in writing marches for the modern era and Light-bringer is one fine example of this.
Two of the bands soloists are featured. Firstly, principal cornet Alan Moyse presents a beautiful, sensitive rendition of Kenneth Downie’s setting of Healing Waters. The band’s principal euphonium player, Adrian Horwood, features Peter Graham’s Canaan’s Land which was originally written for Derick Kane, whose informative programme notes in the booklet give good insight into the music featured on the CD. Adrian overcomes the musical and technical challenges of the solo to give a first-rate performance. Mention must also be made of Adrian’s partner on the euphonium bench, Simon Birkett, who provides a lovely instrumental backing to Norman Bearcroft’s arrangement for male voices of The Calvary Track. Also featured is the band’s trombone section playing The Cleansing Power by Stephen Bulla.
As a young bandsman at Regent Hall, I remember playing A London Celebration, a piece written by our then Bandmaster, Peter Graham. The piece features numerous traditional songs, show tunes and TV themes associated with London and, in those days, it was accompanied by slides (literally!) of photos of famous London landmarks. It’s great to hear this again and pick out all the melodies that are contained within and it really is an enjoyable piece to listen to.
James Wright’s Fantasia for Children is a fun piece which features a number of Sunday school choruses and really comes to life in the hands of this slightly older group of musicians!
Michael Davis has, over the last few years, written a number of beautiful arrangements that have been published in the Triumph and General Series and his setting of Ask the Saviour is sensitively handled by the group. Going back in time, Dean Goffin’s meditation The Compassionate Christ is given a similar treatment, with some lovely solo lines and good ensemble playing. The more extended meditative work, My Comfort and Strength, gives the group an opportunity to show its musicality and good dynamic range. In particular the final verse is triumphant without being overblown, saving the climax until the concert Db major chord in the penultimate bars.
In Steven Ponsford’s Music of a Legacy there are references to SA classics that many of this band will have played numerous times in their original form and Steven’s clever writing has brought these once again to mind. The band handles the technical passages well and gives a convincing performance of this well-constructed work.
A few intonation issues aside, the band sounds in good form, playing with a musicality one would expect from the many years of experience that exists behind the stands. Good use of dynamic contrast is evident throughout and there is a certain vitality about the playing. The programme is interesting and varied, with something for everyone.
We are proud to announce the launch of our new CD, A South London Celebration
For full details and how to obtain your copy (£12.95 each), please click here
We have now added a Photo Gallery to our website which you can open by clicking on the button at the top of this page. If you view these as a slide show, you will get the benefit of seeing the images in full screen
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