The Bass Section

Alan Cooper – EEb Bass

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I studied tuba at Boundstone School Lancing and the London College of Music. In my youth I was mainly an orchestral player and a member of the West Sussex County Youth Orchestra and the NAYO sponsored Anglo-German Youth Orchestra; as well as orchestral brass ensembles Brass Tacks and Beaufort Brass Ensemble. My main incentive was then as now the tours. Through music I have visited and played in most countries of the European Community as well as Hungary, Morocco and Gibraltar. The most memorable occasions being the umpteen encores of ‘Land of Hope & Glory’ in St Michael’s Cave Gibraltar;the ‘Can-Can’ in the Orangerie in Strasbourg; and playing the ‘Happy Hippo’ in the middle of a lake in Hungary.
However while in College I became more & more bored counting rests and decided orchestral playing was no longer for me. Since then apart from the odd tour I have successfully kept out of orchestras.
So for playing I turned to the brass band as I had an enjoyable contesting debut with Lancing & Sompting British Legion when we won the Southern Counties Second Section. This gave me the contesting bug which I still have. Other Brass Bands I played with include the West Sussex Youth Brass Band, Haywards Heath where I first met Colin (see below), Horsham Borough and Oxted. The most successful band I played for was Handcross Brass who won most of the contests they entered and were the first Sussex Band to achieve Championship Section status at National level (I’m hoping Chichester will be the second). I met up with Colin again there and Jane (see horns) and we were with the band until it folded in 1989.
After the demise of Handcross I joined Alder Valley on BBb Bass which I enjoyed as they were playing top section pieces and doing quite a bit of contesting, and at that time acquitting themselves well against the top bands in the south. However at this time I started up my philatelic business (which is still struggling on); and with the arrival of a new premature baby the trip to Aldershot from Crawley was to much to maintain 2+ nights a week.
So I stopped playing for about 9 years until ex-army musician John Fisher got me out of retirement. He was in charge of Crawley’s celebrations for the new millenium part of which was the setting up of a new concert band. While playing with the Crawley Millenium Concert Band I re-met Paul Homewood who persuaded me to join Mid-Sussex Brass and back into the world of brass bands. While with them I was asked to help out the Uckfield Band and thus met Colin for the 3rd time. He was also helping Uckfield and asked me if I’d play for Chichester on a CD they were making for Charity. Next thing I know I’ve joined a really great band – both musically & socially. Here’s to the good times ahead.

Colin Bourne – BBb Bass

Started playing at school aged 11 years. Thought it would be a good way of getting to stay indoors during the breaktimes! Joined Haywards Heath Town Silver Band on Second Baritone. I can remember playing at my first contest at Folkestone in 1970.
I have since played with many brass bands throughout the area, two notable ones being Uckfield and Handcross, both of in which I held the post of Chairman. Contests have been an important part of my banding and I have played at six National Finals in various sections, the most notable being with Handcross at the Albert Hall. I have played Eb and Bb Bass since about 1976 and currently play Bb Bass in Chichester Band. I am married to Jane who plays First horn in the band. I am currently Stage manager for the band.

Gary Booley – BBb Bass

I started having lessons on the cornet when i was aged 9 at school and played in a small brass group saturday mornings at the youth music center. After 3 years i had realised that the cornet just wasn’t my kind of thing, so after much convincing i was moved onto Bb Bass which was a big jump for me, at the same time in 1999, I joined the Chichester City training band on Bb Bass and then in late 2002 i joined the main City band. At the moment i am studying hard for my A levels at Chichester college and find that playing in the band gives me a break from all my studying and gives me something different and positive to focus on! I also play in the Chichester youth brass band and in the Youth training concert band on saturday mornings.

Dave Tutty – BBb Bass

I started playing at the age of ten when my Dad dragged me along to an open day that my local brass band, Wotton under Edge, were holding. I started off playing a cornet but soon moved onto Eb horn, which is what I played for about two years in the training band. In 1996 I started playing with the band on second baritone. Then in 2000 I moved on Eb bass, which, looking back should have been the instrument I started on!! In that same year I started playing with Yate music centre senior wind band (Y.M.C. for short!). While in that band I played in ‘Festivals’ in Chepstow, as well as the national finals for the ‘Festivals’, which were held at the RNCM in Manchester. In recent years I’ve also had the pleasure of playing at the Festival Theatre in London and at Buckingham palace! During my formative years as a player I had lessons of three ex- Sun -Life cornet players, who all helped my get from grade one to eight in the space of five years! These days I’m studying for a BA (hons) degree in Music at the local Uni. I have also just passed the ABRSM performance diploma on Eb bass.