November 19, 2012
If last week’s audition post didn’t get you in the festive spirit then perhaps – and I don’t want to step out of line here – but perhaps there’s something wrong with you. Or maybe Christmas Barbershop just isn’t enough to get your Grinch heart to swell up and burst out of your chest. That’s ok, if memory serves, it took the spirits a few gos to get Bill Murray to make that overlong teary-eyed speech at the end of Scrooged.
And so we see that Christmas Barbershop Quartet, and raise you a Christmas Brass Band. Not a full brass band mind, but a 5 piece group that go by the name of ‘The Riverside Quintet’ who’ve carved out a niche for themselves with an expansive repertoire of Christmas music. Ranging from traditional Carols to jazzier Christmas tunes, the Riverside Quartet are a superb accompaniment to mulled wine, mince pies and other such Christmassery at Corporate Events. But that’s not to say they couldn’t work with regular wine and regular pies at non-Christmas events; their performance of New York, New York was just a sample of a huge selection of Jazz and Classical numbers that work all year round.
Once of the most common objections to brass bands at corporate events is that they’ll be too loud and while we do often deploy a fleet of trumpeters to perform attention grabbing fanfares at events, The Riverside Brass Quintet are an altogether gentler ensemble. Their rich, warm sound is just the tickets as the nights draw in and events planners increasingly find their guests huddled round the nearest open flame humming silent night.
It’s been a while since we had one of those all female vocal harmony trios wafting through the Sternberg Clarke office, sporting vintage costumes and wagging their fingers at - I don’t know - the war or something? With so many on the scene, it takes a little something extra to stand out from the crowd – like say a live backing band and a setlist made up entirely of vintagified modern hits. Yeah, something like that.
The Bellinis offer the same mid 20th Century charm as their competitors but with the added bonus of a modern repertoire that will no doubt have guests cocking their heads saying “Is that... oh!” With the addition of a full live band, the Bellinis can work as either background music or music for dancing and the backing band are also able to perform an instrumental set as a trio. The girls from the band were kind enough to pop in and give us a taste of the act with a cover of Beyonce’s Single Ladies that brought to mind The Horne Section’s similarly swingy take on Mrs Jay Z’s biggest hit.
For more information on booking any of the acts featured in our audition posts, head over to our contact page and get in touch.
By Garreth Owen