We need Big-band band musicians with some experience who would like to play and broaden their horizons.

If you are looking for a band to join?

Why not come along to WESTERLY SHOWBAND and see how you get on?


Of course wind bands like WESTERLY SHOWBAND, and typical big-band bands have comparisons




WESTERLY SHOWBAND has a broader instrumentation.

It is able to tackle a wider repertoire to include film and shoe music such as music from Wicked, Pirates of the Caribbean, A Fistful of Dollars to mention but a few. It can also play concert jazz works such as Rhapsody in Blue, West Side Story, An American in Paris, Slaughter on 10th Avenue etc.

It can play Viennese music; so popular again.

The ADVANTAGES of playing in a wind band:

A wide range of genres lead to an increased appreciation of music.

The ability to be fluent in different style increases your opportunities. This can be important if you seek a place in an orchestra, pit-orchestra etc. Today's musicians NEED to be able to play in all styles which include traditional as well as Big-band-style.

The things you might learn include:


Chris Harris is a life-long jazz and big-band musician. He is also a qualified teacher who can coach you in the intricacies of reading Big-band-music and producing music in a legitimate style or idiom.

He arranges music for the band and has produce many "classics" of the "golden era"


We have vacancies for;

Other instruments should apply as conditions may change.

Please note that we have vacancies for people who wish to learn how to play big-band in our training band.


"Swing" is a direct descendant of The American music known as "Jazz". Jazz originated in New Orleans in about 1900 and was performed "by ear"; that is to say without sheet music and was almost entirely improvised. Typically the bands numbered about seven or eight players. The community in New Orleans was at that time, as it still is, multi-ethnic and it was the Afro-American element of its culture which provided jazz music with its syncopation and lilting quavers. As far as I can tell from audio recordings it was Jelly-Roll Moreton, a band leader of the period, who first used arrangements although these were probably not written down but memorised. . Even today such arrangements are known as "head arrangements". In the 1920's the band leader Fletcher Henderson began producing written arrangements for his own players and it is from these early beginnings that written swing-style arrangements developed. An important change took place in about the early 1930's when young Euro-Americans stated to form their own bands. These bands catered for mainly ballroom dancing and although stylistically similar to swing they often marginalised the improvised jazz element. This music became known as "dance music" and the bands "dance bands". Dance bands eventually disregarded jazz altogether, except for feature numbers, and concentrated on ballroom dance forms such as the quick-step, the fox-trot and the waltz. Well known names from this period include The Dorsey Brothers, Artie Shaw, Glenn Miller and Harry James. Happily the interest in Swing, now sometimes called "big-band music" or "stage band music" has never completely evaporated in spite of the efforts of record companies' to kill it off with guitar music. Indeed, to the contrary, it has become part of the establishment and frequently appears a film and show music and even as music for the ballet. When I was young they used to say "Big-Bands are coming back..! The truth is, they never went away!