Sunday, April 23, 2017

Youngblood Brass Band

The Youngblood Bass Band, while not from New Orleans, was my first exposure to this genre about 8 years ago. My friends and I became infatuated with the hip-hop influenced jazz sound that they produced, and tried to emulate that style for a few years ourselves with varying degrees of success.

What I continue to come back to with Youngblood are two features I believe continue to distinguish them from other groups. Those are the high level of technical and musical skill exhibited by members of the band, and their dedication to educational outreach. Many bands have a high level of skill, but the education component is especially important to growing the genre and getting kids excited about making music in general. It may just be a shrewd business decision, but I think making their sheet music available for purchase is a great way to help sell band directors and schools on the idea of having a brass band as part of the curriculum. I think their existence speaks to this musics ability to travel and make its way into the culture, even in central Wisconsin. So, with that in mind I've included a tune, that I've spent time with transcribing that captures the New Orleans spirit even with a band from far far away.

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