April 10th, 2014 News
Whether you’re one of our regular visitors or someone looking for the first time, welcome to our web site. If you’re either looking to hire a band for your event or simply wanting to catch up with the things we’re up to then this is the place to be!
Our year has got off to an absolute flyer with a mixture of gigs that have included playing for weddings, dances and, in February, the AM Awards ceremony at the International Conference Centre in Birmingham. There’s more of the same (albeit without any more awards ceremonies at the moment!) throughout the year so if you have yet to see us do check out the “Upcoming Gigs” section and come along as soon as you can.
December 9th, 2013 News
If you’re going to be in the middle of Bath this coming Saturday, 7th December, you’ll find us once again playing for the Rotary Club’s Christmas appeal. We’ll be under the colonnades on the corner of the Pump Room and the Roman Baths at the entrance to the Abbey Churchyard playing between 1 and 3pm, working our way through our all the usual Christmas favourites that, of course, have been given some wonderful big band tweaks. Do give yourself a break from all that shopping and come down and see us, won’t you?
Following that we’ve got our final Live@Lansdown session of the year at Lansdown Golf Club on Monday 16th December. The action begins at 8.30pm and, of course, there’ll be Christmas themed music all the way though. Entry is free BUT you do need to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to come along so that we can have your name on our guest list (as you won’t get in if it isn’t). We always pass the hat (ok, its a drum case by the door on the way out, actually!) round at the end as we continue to collect for our charity the Kenyan Orphans Project. We’ve already collected over £1000 for the charity at the Lansdown gigs this year so please come along and help us meet our target of £1500. Can we make it? Of course we will if you and your friends are there! o and there’s one other condition too: do make sure you are wearing something with a Christmas twist to it! That’s not asking much, is it ……………..
January 25th, 2012 News
As promised, a link to the iPlayer page with Park Lane Big Band’s first national broadcast of 2012:
An enjoyable evening was had by all, with lively debate about the issues affecting Bradford on Avon (the lack of a scrabble club being a particular highlight). Park Lane played 3 tracks, a fanfare and an almost fanfare…
The show will be available until 7 days after broadcast so listen while you still can!!
January 24th, 2012 News
You can listen to your favourite big band tonight (24th January) playing live on BBC Radio 5Live! Yup, that’s right, on NATIONAL RADIO!! We’re performing on the Tony Livesy Show which is on between 10.30pm – 01.00am. If you’re a night owl then this is going to be absolutely right for you but, if you’re like me and should be tucked up in bed at that time in bed, fear not – the show will be on the iplayer from late Wednesday.
You can listen on AM (909, 693), on digital radio, digital TV or online at bbc.co.uk/5live
We’ll post a link on here to the show once it appears on the iPlayer.
January 11th, 2012 News
Well it wasn’t such a bad old year for PLBB, was it? In fact it turned out to be one of our busiest years ever. Highlights included playing for the post-racing entertainment at Bath Races’ early June event and then, six months later, at The Kenyan Orphans Project’s 10th Anniversary Ball at The Savoy Hotel in the heart of London’s West End. As well as carrying out our regular end-of-the-month “Live @ Lansdown” gigs the band was in action for numerous concerts, dances and weddings too. Will 2012 be any different? Probably not as the diary is already filling up with engagements!
With a core of some 25 players there are always going to be one or two changes as the year goes by. Our sax section has seen a couple of new additions with Alex Delling and Stacey Doherty joining us on Tenor and Alto respectively. We also welcomed Olivia Angwin and her saxes back from her travels – if a sax chair needs filling, she’ll be there! The guitar chair is now occupied by the very able Pat Moran. Replacing Glenn Tommey was never going to be an easy job but boy, has Pat risen to the task and his contribution to the band’s sound is seriously impressive!
“Friends of Park Lane”
Whilst we don’t ‘do’ (yet!) facebook and twitter, we’ve nevertheless got our group email address for all those of you who’d like to keep up to date with what the band is doing. Once a month (or thereabouts) you’ll get an email from us telling what we’re up to and where you can see us. To register and be included please pop your email address in the box to the right hand side and we’ll include you in the group. If, after you’ve joined, you don’t want to continue then instructions are included to have your details removed. Easy!
If you’d like to see us soon, we’re playing on 20th January 2012 at the Bawa Club, 589 Southmead Rd, Filton, Bristol. Follow this link for more details.
Our first Live@Lansdown is at 8.30pm on Monday 30th January. This for members and guests only at Lansdown Golf Club. If you’d like to join us as our guest please email email@example.com and we’ll invite you along. Please note that you cannot attend without your name being on the door list so that email is absolutely necessary!
“Kenyan Orphans Project”
The band adopted this charity some five years ago when former PLBB player Tom Hutchison introduced them to us after he’d worked as a volunteer (he’s a doctor) for them one summer. Admission to our Live@Lansdown gigs is free so we always pass the hat round at the end and hand the cash on to KOP. As a consequence nearly £1200.00 was raised for the charity last year. We’ve been told that £100 will provide some 200 meals for the children receiving help from the project and really can’t think of a better way to see this money being spent. To find out more about the project, please follow this link: www.kopafrica.org
April 3rd, 2011 News
Well we hope it’s on its way because as this is being written the rain is lashing down outside! The great thing about the summer though is it gives us the opportunity to play some outdoors gigs, something the band always enjoys. If you’ve yet to see the band and can’t make it to any of our monthly “Live @ Lansdown” sessions then make a note of these dates NOW!
FRIDAY 3rd JUNE will find the band on stage for the post racing entertainment at the Bath Ales Race and Jazz Festival night at Bath Racecourse. The racing begins at 6.30 and finishes around 9.00pm. After that the action moves to the stage by the course’s finishing line opposite the main grandstand when Park Lane start up and take what is bound to be quite a party on and into the hot summer’s night……………………
SUNDAY 3rd JULY sees the band returning to The American Museum on Claverton Down, just outside Bath. The museum is celebrating its 50th Birthday that afternoon and have invited PLBB to perform the musical honours on this special occasion. Why not bring a picnic and a blanket along and join us for this event? The band will be playing on the terrace behind the house, begining at 2.00pm.
SUNDAY 10th JULY is the date for this year’s annual PLBB concert on the wonderful Victorian band stand in Royal Victoria Park. Just like the American Museum gig, this is an afternoon event that calls for a picnic and a blanket so you can get the most out of it. If it should be anything like last year’s gig you’ll need some sun cream too!
February 15th, 2011 News
Band Leader Dave Pegler says “2011 has kicked off in great style for us and we’ve been fortuate to be able to carry on in much the same way as we finished last year. Our January “Live@Lansdown” session for the members and guests at Lansdown Golf Club well and truely blew the last remains of the Christmas break away whilst the Kenyan Orphans Project charity ball the following week at The Grand Hotel in Bristol saw the band at the top of its form as a good time was had by all.
We’ve seen a few more changes in personel over the last year as people come and go. Long serving tenor player Paul Satterley left in the Autumn after a distinguished decade of gigging but his successor, Alex Delling, has proved to be a remarkably talented replacement. Nicole Vernon, who’s taken over as lead alto, has added a dimension we previously lacked and as if that wasn’t enough, Hannah Smyth’s performances as our feature vocalist have improved with every outing since she joined us back in January.
Recording our “Live@Lansdown” cd in the spring was great fun and its sales at gigs and via the website have exceeded my expectations too. The thing is, if you’re like me, once you complete one project you always want to get started on the next one so we’ve been back in the studio to put some more tunes down! We’ve almost completed recordings of “Everything” (with Hannah on vocals), “My Life” (this time with the awsomely talented Simon Jones singing) and a great Big Band version of Richard Strauss’ “Also Sprach Zarathustra”. I’m hoping to have everything finished by the end of February and up on the website for people to listen to just after that.
September 26th, 2010 News
The band is very lucky to be able to play on the last Monday of every month (apart from August and December) to the members and guests at Lansdown Golf Club. If you are not a member of the club but would nevertheless like to see the band when it plays there please be advised that you cannot arrive unannounced and expect entry. Licencing regulations prevent the public gaining general admission (as they would in a pub or similar venue).
If you would like to gain entry to see the band please either email us (via firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com) or call 01225 331509 so we can add your name to the Guest List.
Of course, you can also join the club as either a playing or social member. Follow this link for more details
February 2nd, 2010 News
PLBB has been supporting the Kenyan Orphans Project (KOP) for the last two years. This support came about following former PLBB player Tom Huchinson’s trip to Kenya with the project in 2007. The band’s monthly sessions for the members of Lansdown Golf Club have always been free of an admission charge so passing the hat round for KOP at the end of the evenings certainly seems to be the right thing to do. To find out more about this local charity and the work they do in Kenya, please follow this link http://www.kopafrica.org/
September 19th, 2009 News
…yup, that’s us – Park Lane Big Band. Ok, you’ve probably realised already that Santa Caterina isn’t the largest place in the world (it’s a small resort in the Italian Alps, should you be wondering) and the person writing it had had tongue firmly in her cheek as she wrote it but, hey, our trip there at the end of August was such a blast. Outdoor gigs are always great fun but playing to a crowd of enthusiastic Italians in a sun drenched square has just got to be one of the best things we’ve ever done. Would we go back there? Absolutely – like a shot, in fact. We’ve got some pictures of the trip in the Gallery section of this site (there are photos of our gig in Garda too). Needless to say, they’re ones we took ourselves so the artistic objectivity you may crave is perhaps compromised by the fact that we were all having a such a great time. Whatever! We’ve been promised some ‘official’ ones by the good folk in Santa Caterina and we’ll put them up just as soon as we get them. In the meantime, if you’d like to have a look at Santa Caterina, try visiting their site: www.santacaterina.it
“Revolving Doors”. Anyone who’s ever run a big band will tell you that without a strong squad of players to call on you are going to struggle to keep the show on the road. Park Lane has always been lucky to have a strong squad but in spite of that, we too have had people coming and going. Alas, we have had to say ‘Adieu’ to Andy Pryor after seven great years leading the trombone section. The good news is that Andy is still going to be in the area and may well be seen ‘depping’ for us from time to time. Tom Hutchinson is also going to be missing for a while from the trombone section as another posting with Medcin Sans Frontier looms on the horizon. To balance these losses up, however, we’ve been lucky to have Robin Slee and Martin Gore join us so a seamless transition is going to be the order of the day. The sax section has also seen a bit of movement as Steve Mathers has moved to London to begin his studies at Trinity College. He’s going to be a hard act to follow but fear not – we’re auditioning for a new 1st Tenor at the moment and hope to announce who’s going to be in the chair before too long!
What else? We’re working up a few new tunes in rehearsals and re-visiting old neglected ones too. If you’d like to hear what we’ve been up to then do come and see us at Lansdown Golf Club on 28th September. Please remember to email me firstname.lastname@example.org first so that we can put you on the guest list as you won’t be allowed in if you are not on the list.
One final thing: We’ve never got down to doing a ‘proper’ cd. I’ve pussy-footed around this one for ages so I’m going to make life difficult for myself when I mix my metaphors by saying that the time has come to grasp the nettle and make a rod for my own back by announcing here and now that we are going to complete the necessary recordings next month and see if we can have everything ready for Christmas. There – it’s done. The guys in the band haven’t been told yet but what the heck? It’s time for actions to speak louder than words! You can all hold me to this and I’ll let you know how things are progressing when I write next month. Cheers!