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

Pete Long and his 'Goodmen' Return to Taunton!

by Administrator 5. September 2014 09:13

Pete Long and his Goodmen have performed Benny Goodman's famous 1938 Carnegie Hall concert over fifty times in the last decade. And now following a hugely successful concert in Taunton last June they now proudly present their debut re-creation of the Benny Goodman Orchestra's return to Carnegie Hall the following year!

On October 6th 1939 The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) presented a week-long series of concerts at New York’s Carnegie Hall to celebrate the organisation’s 25th anniversary. In the course of the week, a concert was given featuring the Orchestras of the established King Of Swing, Benny Goodman, and the new kid on the block, Glenn Miller. Both bands were out to impress, and the result was one of the hardest hitting nights in swing history. Goodman wowed the audience with his big hitters such as a superheated fast version of Sing Sing Sing, a rocking "Don't Be That Way" and the big contemporary smash hit "Tain't What You Do". In the second set, Miller, at the opening phase of his bandleading career has clearly mapped out his strategy and gave a taste of his hits to come with Moonlight Serenade, In The Mood and Little Brown Jug. 

Who won the match? Why not come down and decide for yourself!

Tickets are available from the shop on 01823 282386 or Taunton Tourist Information.

Adult ticket £16, concession £14 and VIP reserved seating £20

Click here to buy

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Summer School in Exmouth this August!

by Administrator 21. July 2014 11:32

Summer Music School in Exmouty

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Events

The West End Comes to the South West in this Fantastic First!

by Administrator 21. July 2014 11:17

Pete Long 2014 Intermediate Wind Band Day

We are excited to announce our first ever Intermediate Symphonic Wind Band day suitable for players from Grade V.

Following feedback from many people disappointed that they weren’t confident enough to attend our advanced workshops, these Intermediate level events are ideal for gaining experience with a professional conductor as well as getting the chance to play with many other like-minded musicians.

For our first intermediate workshop we welcome none other than the inimitable Pete Long. Pete conducted the Advanced Symphonic Wind Band Day on Saturday 1 February 2014 and went down a storm with players who complimented him on his creative and friendly approach. Pete previously played and arranged for Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra for 5 years and now acts as bandleader for Ronnie Scott’s Big Band. He has played with and supported a massive range of musicians including Sir Paul McCartney, Dizzy Gillespie, Chick Corea, Stereophonics, Clare Teal, Jamie Cullum and many others. Pete is also a highly skilled educator and frequently leads workshops in schools and colleges across the UK. 

This workshop will feature a ‘musicals’ themed repertoire with many well known pieces, including: Oliver, Hairspray, Chorus Line, Lion King, Grease, Jesus Christ Superstar, Frozen, and Breezin' Down Broadway.. 

This unique workshop gives musicians a rare opportunity to work with a highly regarded music professional and also the chance to learn and play with other like minded people. Pete will also be answering players’ questions and giving advice on how to arrange and compose music. 

Tea and coffee is available throughout the day. There will also be the chance for attendees to try a wide range of instruments and accessories on our fully equipped trade stand, let us know if you would like us to bring anything in particular. 

We very much hope to see you there! 

To book your tickets contact Steve Herbert, Brass Specialist, on 01823 282386 or email steve@johnpacker.co.uk. 

Places for the day usually fill up quickly so be sure to reserve your seat as soon as you can.

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Join us for a 'Mike McDermott' Fest!

by Administrator 21. July 2014 11:01

Michael McDermott leads music workshop

Another in our special series of exciting events for advanced musicians, this time we welcome guest conductor Michael McDermott to host our September workshop. 

A household name within the industry for more than 2 decades, Michael is a highly respected arranger and composer. Most noticeably, he arranged All The Queens Horses, which was presented to HRM The Queen during her Diamond Jubilee last year. Michael is also well respected for arranging James Bond, Jurassic Park, Star Trek Generations, TV Cop Themes and many more… 

 

The full repertoire for the September workshop includes: 

Nostra Regina 

Fanfare composed by Michael for the Massed Bands of The Royal Marines for the Mountbatten Festival in 2006 

Commando Spirit

A quick march, which was the winning piece composed by Michael in a composition competition. 

Overture of Overtures

Many well-known overtures arranged by Michael. 

How to Train Your Dragon 

Film music arranged for massed bands by Michael and used at the Edinburgh Tattoo. 

1492 Conquest Of Paradise

Film theme arranged by Michael

 

This workshop focuses on Michael’s own work and includes a number of newly arranged pieces. Michael’s arrangement of ‘How To Train Your Dragon’ for massed bands at the Edinburgh Tattoo is an exciting re-imagination of John Powell’s original composition for the film of the same title. McDermott’s second new arrangement, ‘Overture of Overtures’ includes a number of well known pieces you may recognise. 

This unique workshop gives musicians a rare opportunity to work with a highly regarded music professional and also the chance to learn and play with other like minded people. Michael will also be answering players’ questions and giving advice on how to arrange and compose music. 

Tea and coffee is available throughout the day. There will also be the chance for attendees to try a wide range of instruments and accessories on our fully equipped trade stand, let us know if you would like us to bring anything in particular. 

We very much hope to see you there!

To book your tickets contact Steve Herbert, Brass Specialist, on 01823 282386 or email steve@johnpacker.co.uk 

 

Places for the day usually fill up quickly so be sure to reserve your seat as soon as you can.

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Events

Get Your Tickets to the Benny Goodman Gig NOW!!!

by Administrator 6. May 2014 12:41

There is now less than one month to go before Pete Long and his 'Goodmen' take to the stage in a remarkable reenactment of Benny Goodman's Legendary Jazz Concert at the Carnegie Hall in 1938.

Bandleader and clarinettist Pete Long (Ronnie Scott’s Big Band, Echoes of Ellington and ex-sax star of Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra) presents a superlative recreation of one of the greatest concerts in jazz history. Benny’s line up that night included stars such as trumpeters Harry James and Ziggy Elman, drummer Gene Krupa and pianist Jess Stacey.

Of course you don't have to have know about Benny Goodman to enjoy the evening; the energy and musicianship from Pete and his fellows will inspire even non-musicians! Pete Long and his musicians have gone to great lengths to re-create this concert, including original arrangements, period instruments and even the stage seating plan. The result is an evening of fabulous music that swings like crazy, it’s a great night out not to be missed! 

The concert takes place in the Queen's Hall at Queen's College, Taunton from 7.30pm. Tickets cost £15 for adults, and £10 for concessions (students, OAPs etc.). Click here to buy yours!

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An Evening of Big Band Jazz in Weston-super-Mare

by Administrator 6. May 2014 11:50

Some of the UK's finest jazz musicians will be performing an evening of big band jazz on Saturday May 10th at the Boulevard United Reformed Church in Weston-super-Mare.

Swing Machine Jazz Orchestra perform classic and modern big band music to the highest level. Audience response has been staggering with a string of sell out concerts since they formed in 2010, receiving rave reviews from audiences.

The band’s repertoire consists of many big band favourites as played by the likes of Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Thad Jones, Buddy Rich and Sammy Nestico as well modern pop arrangements and latin jazz that will have you dancing in the aisles!

The musicians’ collective experience is truly exceptional. Between them they have performed with some of the top musical ensembles in the country including: Strictly Come Dancing Live Band, Syd Lawrence Orchestra, Rat Pack National Touring Shows, BBC Big Band, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra to name but a few.

Tickets cost £12 (£10 Concessions), and are available from www.inspiredconcerts.com, calling 01934 645645 or on the door.

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An Evening of English Song and Piano Classics - Saturday May 17th @ 7.30pm

by Administrator 5. May 2014 12:26

Two talented musicians unite on Saturday May 17th for an evening of classic song and piano repertoire at the Boulevard United Reformed Church in Weston-super-Mare. 

Music on the night includes Music for a While by Purcell, Sea Pictures by Elgar, Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata and Nocture in B Major by Chopin.

Soloist, Martha McLorinan grew up in Weston-super-Mare and is a regular voice on BBC Radio 3, singing with groups such as The BBC Singers, The Sixteen, The Cambridge Singers, The Tallis Scholars, Ensemble Plus Ultra, Alamire and The Eric Whitacre Singers.

Martha will be accompanied on piano by Jason Anderson, a previous winner of BBC Guardian Young Composer of the Year (2004), who has performed for the Prince of Wales at Buckingham Palace. Since 2012 Jason has toured extensively on the Queen Mary 2.

Tickets cost £10 (£8 concessions) and are available via www.inspiredconcerts.com, calling 01934 645645 or on the door. Visit the Inspired Concerts website for details of more exciting events coming up.

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The Heroes Band Perform Charity Concert

by Administrator 29. April 2014 14:27

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John Packer Ltd supports Phoenix Brass Band Workshop

by Administrator 10. April 2014 11:30

 

JOHN Packer Ltd & Sterling Musical Instruments are sponsoring Phoenix Brass Band's May workshop with David Thornton.

David Thornton is a highly experienced euphonium soloist who plays Sterling instruments. He is no stranger to running workshops, having successfully run one for John Packer Ltd previously. The workshop is open to all ages with the aim of learning about playing, improving musical skills and having some laughs along the way.

The workshop takes place on Sunday, May 25th at Wadham School, in Crewkerne. It costs £10 per person and runs from 9.30am-5pm.

John Packer's will have a stand at the workshop; with a variety of brass instruments and accessories available.

For more information about the workshop and to book, click here.

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Stop Being a Music Lover - be a Player Instead!

by Administrator 4. March 2014 11:28

Learn to Play Day

On Saturday, April 12th, John Packers will be taking part in the Nationwide Learn to Play Day. The day is an opportunity for anyone who’s ever had an interest in playing a musical instrument from piccolo to a tuba to explore moving from the concept to the reality!

Our experienced staff will be on hand to demonstrate and talk about the different instruments and show how to get the first sounds. This will very much be a hands on event to give the potential player the best introductory experience.

There will also be special deals and low cost hire schemes - from £15 per month - to enable customers to move from being a listener into a player with the least financial commitment. We will also have details of a myriad teachers in the local area to ensure that the player has the best chance of success.

 

Tell everyone you know!

NB. Please bring ID if considering hiring.

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