John Packer Blog

Welcome to the John Packer blog. Here we’ll keep you updated on all the latest happenings at John Packer Ltd, all the latest music news, musical instruments and competitions.

Month List

Brass Explosion on Sat 25 May: JP gets louder and prouder

by Administrator 3. May 2013 13:47

John Packer Ltd have had a reputation as specialists in the world of Brass instruments for several decades, but are now proud to announce that they are getting even bigger and better. Not only is there a great overall increase in stock, but there is also an entirely new showroom focussing on low brass. Students and professional players alike can now come and test a vast array of instruments from prestigious makers like Bach, Besson, Conn, Courtois, Holton, JP, King, Mauriat, Rath, Schagerl, Schilke, Smith-Watkins, Sterling, Stomvi and Yamaha and many more.

To mark the occasion, we are hosting a special launch event on Saturday 25 May from 9am. With plenty going on and many fantastic discounts available, it’s a great chance for you to come and see how we’ve changed. Andy Crowley, professional Yamaha artist and internationally renowned trumpeter joins us for the day and will be on hand to give free 30 minute 1-2-1 tuition. Whether it’s a query about performing or advice on your technique, Andy’s experience will be invaluable in improving your approach to playing. 

Described by the Independent as “A trumpeter of virtuosic brilliance” Andy Crowley is one of the most recorded trumpeters for film soundtracks in the world including the last 3 James Bond movies and has played with Paul McCartney, Tina Turner, Sting and Robbie Williams. Andy is also a professor at the Royal College of Music and manager of the London Brass. Also on hand for the day are is Grenville Moore. Grenville is a multi-talented multi-instrumentalist and his credits include a 20 year stint with the Ulster Orchestra on French horn, while more recently he has being performing on different instruments with a number of high level brass bands.

To book your tuition slot with Andy or Grenville, contact Steve or Tommy, on 01823 282386 (option 1) or email Steve at Spaces are sure to book up quickly so let us know soon if you are interested.

Also on display and available to try on the day will be the very exciting new Yamaha Neo brass range, which is due to be released in August, including the Bb & Eb Cornets and EEb tuba. A professional member of the Yamaha team will be on hand to answer your questions and to discuss with new range. David King, Principal Conductor of Brighouse and Rastrick Brass Band (Britain), Guest Conductor of Eikanger Bjorsvik (Norway) and Artistic Director of National Australia Brass (Australia) described the new range as “a model of excellence designed and developed for discerning band musicians and soloists seeking to combine intrinsic warmth with a projected resilience of sound that has both personality and persuasive presence.” Come and try them and see if you agree!

To celebrate our expansion we are giving away a generous JP goodie bag (worth at least £20) to the first 50 customers who visit on the day. Amongst other things it’ll include an TGI98W Metronome and Tuner electronic combined tuner/metronome worth £12.80 and plenty of music related goodies. Also included is a special website discount voucher giving 20% off all accessories. This is valid for 12 months and an unlimited number of purchases through our website  

Everyone at John Packer warmly invites you to visit us on Saturday 25 May. We look forward to seeing you there!

Saturday 25 May at John Packer Ltd, Taunton, TA2 6AF
- Free JP goodie bag worth at least £20
- Free 30 minute 1-2-1 tuition with Andy Cowley  or Grenville Moore
- Try out the new Yamaha Neo range
- Free £50 prize draw

Do you know a Deserving Musician?

by Administrator 29. November 2012 12:38

'TIS the season of goodwill and when could be a better time to donate an instrument to a good home?!

We are asking schools and teachers that know a deserving young student to get in touch and tell us why they think that player should be awarded a new instrument.

We'll consider the applications by the closing date of Thursday December 13th and one luck youngster will receive the instrument in time for Christmas!

Just to clarify, this instrument will be completely FREE OF CHARGE (including carriage).

The Spirit of Christmas is alive and well!

Send your nomination to

How You Can Buy Instruments VAT-free via Academy Schools

by Administrator 17. January 2012 09:44

THE John Packer Assisted Instrument Purchase Scheme has been a vital component in support of music in state schools since we pioneered the scheme in the 1990s.

However, with the advent of the Academy status schools, considerable confusion has arisen over whether or not the AIP scheme still applied. Many Academy Schools are either uncertain about the situation or believe that the AIP scheme is no longer applicable to them. If you are in that group then finally we have clarity...

Recently a school with which we have dealings made an enquiry to HM Revenue & Customs about this matter. This is an extract from the reply that they received from the government department:

"This matter has been looked into and I can advise you that academies are allowed to use the Assisted Instrument Purchase Scheme. It was originally thought that academies wouldn't be involved in this scheme and therefore it would not be applicable to them. However, we have now received information to the contrary and VAT Supply Policy have confirmed that academies can use the scheme in the same way that local authorities can.

Therefore I can confirm that academies can use the AIPS subject to the usual conditions of the scheme."*

* full text available if required.

This is great news for the parents of musical pupils and for music in schools. Please share this with your finance team, music staff and parents.

For your interest you can also view our current AIPS handout, complete with prices and details of our instrument hire scheme, by clicking here.

French Horn Giveaway Leads to Annual Event

by Administrator 3. December 2010 10:59

THE response to our appeal for a deserving musician was fantastic; evident that there are not only some very special players who are examples to us all, but also so many very caring and supportive teachers and parents.

A very kind customer wanted us to find a good home for a Yamaha French horn they had donated. Reading the emails that we received was often a moving experience.

It was extremely hard to come up with a single winner amongst so many worthy nominations, so we took the decision to push the boat out and add something ourselves.

In addition to the original donated French horn, we sent out seven of our own instruments to support some wonderful young people. All of the recipients have, in various ways and sometimes in difficult circumstances, shown themselves to be dedicated to their music and an example to those around them.

A big thank you to all those of you who took the trouble to send in a nomination. It is our regret that wasn't possible to accede to all the suggestions.

As this was such a moving experience for us, we have decided to make this an annual process to be repeated every December!

Some of the responses we received from winners:

"Thank you so much for the wonderful news that you are donating a French Horn to one of my pupils. I know the family will be so pleased and I am sure that Josh will put it to good use. Thank you once again"

"That's fantastic news! Just in time for Christmas."

"Many thanks for your generosity in this. I know one of our children has been offered one & his parents are thrilled as I know he will be on Christmas morning when he receives it!"

"Thank you so much for the French Horn. It arrived early this morning and is now with its new owner, who is over the moon. It has certainly cheered Alexander up as he has been quite poorly recently. Mum was also really thrilled and asked me to convey her thanks. Many thanks and Best Wishes for Christmas."