Salvation Army Brass Band - Instrumentation


Brass bands in the British tradition are limited to cornets, flugelhorns, tenor horns (known as alto horns in U.S.A), baritones, trombones, euphoniums, tubas (known as basses in brass bands), and percussion; but not trumpets or French horns, since they are orchestral and concert band instruments.

With the exception of the bass trombone and percussion, all parts are transposing and written in the treble clef, which means that for every instrument, from the big basses right up to the soprano cornet, the fingering for the written notes is similar. This system, which is unique to UK-style brass bands, ensures most parts can be covered when there is less than a full complement of players

The instrumentation in Salvation Army banding is almost identical to that of secular banding except for a minor difference in the cornet section whereby the repiano is dropped and the remainder of the row is made up of parts designated 1st and 2nd (two players each) rather than 2nd and 3rd; and that some major pieces have a split first trombone part, the lower part usually cued elsewhere in the band.

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