2016 Scout House ‘Spring Ahead’ Concert
People in the Cambridge area are invited to “Spring Ahead….to an afternoon of family fun” with all five Preston Scout House performing units on Sunday, April 17, including the Silver Leaves brass ensemble, heritage drill team, Magic of Scout House competitive winter guard, Scout House Cadets youth drum and bugle corps and Scout House Band.
The free entertainment and social time will run from 1 pm to 4 pm at the Preston Knights of Columbus building, 333 Speedsville Road in Cambridge, Scout House Band’s winter rehearsal location. Plenty of free parking spaces are available. Those attending will have a last minute chance to purchase tickets for a chance to win one of two $500 raffle prizes to be drawn during the event. Only 500 raffle tickets are being sold.
The Silver Leaves brass ensemble first performed in December 2003 during Christmas celebrations at Galt Royal Canadian Legion Branch 121 and a Christmas Carol songfest in Galt market square. The Silver Leaves have performed regularly at the Great Alliance of Seniors (GAS) annual reunions since 2005. The 2016 ensemble repertoire includes the Muppet Show Theme Song, Gospel John, Sweet Caroline, Hooked on a Feeling, Canadian Sunset, Instant Concert, One Fine Morning.
The Muppet Show Theme Song was the opening number on the popular puppet television series performed by the Muppet orchestra: Crazy Harry on triangle, Zoot on sax, Animal on drums, Rowlf on piano with Trumpet Girl and conductor Nigel performing in the pit. The current Muppet show features Miss Piggy in a parody production of a fictional late night talk show.
Gospel John, a powerful song with a call and response feature, was written by American composer Jeff Steinberg. Renowned Canadian trumpet player Maynard Ferguson’s version of Gospel John featured a high range introduction that brought to mind a passionate preacher appealing to the congregation. Steinberg has created many original scores for film, television and advertising campaigns. He also toured the world with the Glenn Miller Orchestra in the 1970s when it was under the direction of Buddy DeFranco.
Sweet Caroline became a platinum hit for writer and singer Neil Diamond, selling more than a million single records after being introduced in 1969 and more recently two million digital downloads in the United States alone. Many professional sports teams feature Sweet Caroline during games, most notably the Boston Red Sox before the eighth inning of home games.
Hooked On A Feeling has had several revivals in movie and television soundtracks, serving as a symbol of 1970s culture. Many television viewers recall it from the dancing baby sequences on the Ally McBeal television show. It received another sales boost a few years ago after being featured in the film Guardians of the Galaxy. Toronto Blue Jays used the song in a 2015 television commercial that focussed on newly acquired players David Price and Troy Tulowitzki. It’s also played in the stadium before the eighth inning of Blue Jay home games.
Canadian Sunset, written by pianist Eddie Heywood and lyricist Norman Gimble, has become a jazz standard since its introduction in 1956, performed in various styles by such well known musicians as guitarist Wes Montgomery, pianist Floyd Cramer, organ player Earl Grant, singers Andy Williams, Sam Cooke and Dean Martin. Canada’s Marching Ambassadors senior drum and bugle corps featured the song in late 1950s field shows as part of an “around the world” music theme.
Instant Concert is an appealing novelty number played by stage and concert bands across North America. Conductors often challenge audiences to count how many of the 30 melodies they recognize during the three-minute arrangement. There are segments of 30 separate well-known marches, folk songs, symphony and opera themes and folk songs.
One Fine Morning is the title track from a 1971 album by Canadian band Lighthouse, co-founded in 1968 by former Preston Scout House Band snare drummer Ron ‘Skip’ Prokop and keyboard player Paul Hoffert. Lighthouse was unique in Canadian music circles, combining a rock style rhythm section, jazz horns and classical strings. During its heyday, Lighthouse performed at Carnegie Hall, Atlantic City Pop Festival, Monterey and Newport Jazz Festivals, Isle of Wight Festival and Strawberry Fields Forever Festival. LIghthouse won Juno Awards for best Canadian group of the year in 1972, 1973 and 1974.
The Scout House Heritage Guard wears the vintage uniform from the 1950s and 1960s to recreate many of the unique marching routines that astounded drum and bugle corps audiences across the continent in that era. The Band’s uniform consisting of tight black shorts, knee socks, short-sleeved burgundy tunics, white gauntlets and black Aussie hats gave Scout House a unique visual appearance compared to the military style uniforms most other drum and bugle corps wore. The Band’s marching style, with knees lifted high and straight arms swinging to shoulder height, combined with marching routines including slow march, a stylized wooden soldiers routine and skipping while playing all added to the distinct visual appeal.
Preston Scout House Cadets originated in 2012 as part of the planning to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the group’s founding in 1938 and to give community youth the opportunity to belong to a local drum and bugle corps. The Cadets began as a drum line, winning a Drumline Ontario championship in their category in the first year of competition. Since then, the group has expanded to include a brass section and colour guard. Music performed in Drumline Ontario contests this year includes Phantom of the Opera, Puttin’ on the Ritz, Washington Square, The Groove, Go West. The repertoire will change slightly for the 7th annual Scout House Invitational Tattoo on August 20, with Devil Went Down to Georgia replacing The Groove for the second drum solo. The Cadets are making their first appearance in new uniforms in April.
Magic of Scout House winter guard of Cambridge was awarded the first ever North East Color Guard Circuit (NECGC) Showmanship Effectiveness Award in sweeping to a second consecutive circuit championship on Saturday, March 26 at the College at Brockport (State University of New York) in Brockport, New York. Magic scored 76.39 in the Senior category, nine points more than last year’s title-winning score. For the second year in a row, the Scout House guard had top score in every caption in every contest throughout the season. Members of the 2016 squad come from the Cambridge area, other Niagara peninsula communities and Buffalo, New York.
Music for the 2016 routine titled Love is Love includes Find Somebody to Love and Crazy Little Thing Called Love, both by British rock group Queen, and reference to the Ashley Madison online dating site with the advertising catch phrase: Life is short…. have an affair. The floor routine opens with a traditional wedding ceremony and ends with two male members eventually finding each other.
The Scout House Band 2016 field show features some standards from earlier years along with new songs. The show will open with Waterloo Fanfare, which has identified the Band instantly to audiences since 1949, when the Waterloo Music Festival was the largest event of its kind in North America. Johnny One Note is the novelty song introduced in Rodgers and Hart’s hit Broadway show Babes In Arms. Waltzing Matilda has been the Band’s signature tune since the early 1950s. St. Louis Blues March arranged by world famous swing band leader Glenn Miller during World War II set a new standard for military marching music by combining blues, jazz and traditional military marching styles. The percussion section feature this year is Buckle Up, created by late Scout House percussion writer Lee Buckley.
Miserlou (originally spelled Misirlou, a Greek word referring to a Muslim Egyptian woman) was performed by many North American swing bands in the 1940s and was widely used as an accompaniment to mid-Eastern folk dances. Written to portray a desert love affair, the lyrics describe a cross-faith, cross-race relationship, which would have been very controversial at the time. It took on a new appeal when given blazing rock guitar treatment by Dick Dale in 1960s beach blanket movies. The field show will come to a boisterous conclusion with Zoot Suit Riot, recalling the jump blues style of the swing band era. The title and lyrics refer to the street gang brawls involving U.S. service men and Mexican youth that originated in Los Angeles, eventually breaking out in other major cities.
Since the original band was formed in 1938 as an innovative new activity for members of the 1st Preston Scout Troop, Scout House Band has presented more than 200 songs to audiences across North America, including traditional military marches, hymns, Broadway and movie songs, radio hits, dance songs and original compositions by instructors of the day.
Preston Scout House Band Inc. offers anyone of any age the opportunity to “Arrange the soundtrack of your life” in marching arts activities starting at age 10 and continuing throughout life. Non-performing members are welcome to join to help offer important support services to the organization.
Preston Scout House Band, Inc. is a non-profit corporation with registered charity status able to issue tax receipts to donors, incorporated under the Corporations Act of the Province of Ontario on November 29, 1956.
For more information about all Preston Scout House activities, contact Activities Coordinator Nancy Weiler at telephone (519) 653-3376, email prestonscouthouseband [dot] adm [at] sympatico [dot] ca