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Issue 6082

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Neil Jowett: a life in banding

Thursday 18 February, 2021

The brass band world recently lost another treasured bandsperson following the passing of Neil Jowett. A former member of Black Dyke, Neil went on to play a major role in the resurgence of Lindley Band, serving the organisation as conductor for around three decades after a distinguished tenure as a player.

British Bandsman revisits an article from Chris Helme as the band world pays tribute to the much-missed musician.

 

In banding terms, a young brass player’s dream must be an invitation to play for one of the very best bands. Fulfilment of that dream cannot come much higher than being invited to play for Black Dyke.

Imagine the scene. Young Neil Jowett and his new wife Christine were sat at home when Neil answered a knock at the door. The caller was Roy Newsome, someone who lived a couple of miles away from the newlyweds. In 1974 Neil and Christine did not have a telephone, something not unusual in those days for many people, hence the reason Roy had to call round. “…I’d like you to play at a couple of jobs to fill in at Dyke”.

Roy did not have to ask twice; Neil could still sense the feeling he had on that first visit to the old bandroom at Queensbury, walking through the curtained doorway as many of his musical heroes had done before him.

 

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