Welsh champion Tredegar has delved back into its recording history as part of its ongoing Covid-19 Support for the Arts cultural funding contract through Arts Council Wales.
The support has helped the band continue to carry on its activities during the Covid-19 pandemic by being able to undertake a number of different activities and projects.
One has seen the band work on the re-release on CD of an LP recording made in early 1981 on the influential Black Mountain Recording label.
The company had been set up by the famous Welsh entertainer Ryan Davies, and although he died in 1977 it continued to release critically acclaimed recordings with a distinct Welsh flavour thanks to producer Mike Evans.
It had a renowned reputation for its innovative approach to mixing genres — from live recorded performances of Ryan himself, to folk, big band, male choirs, mixed choirs and brass bands.
'Sing Lennon & McCartney' featured Tredegar (conducted by Albert Meek) alongside Risca Male Voice Choir and the Richard Williams Singers, as a musical celebration of the life of John Lennon, who had been killed in New York in December 1980.
Printed on an eye-catching blue vinyl it featured specially commissioned arrangements of hits such as 'Penny Lane', 'Yesterday', 'The Long and Winding Road' and 'Imagine' amongst others featuring different combinations of brass band/150 strong male voice choir and mixed choir, including arrangements made by the late Eddie Huckridge.
Now thanks to Mike's help a new CD release has been produced in time for the 40th anniversary in 2021, with the recording tapes retrieved from his personal archive.
40 years later it sums up the artistic approach the band has created for itself — even the blue vinyl LP itself was ahead of its time for brass bands!Ian Porthouse
In addition Tredegar has also located the original hand written scores and parts from its extensive library, which will now be digitised so that they can be performed again.
Tredegar MD Ian Porthouse told 4BR: "Speaking to people who were in the band at the time, the recording brought together three diverse musical genres that worked so well.
40 years later it sums up the artistic approach the band has created for itself — even the blue vinyl LP itself was ahead of its time for brass bands!"
He added: "Having listened to the CD it was certainly something different from what was the 'norm' in those days as I remember them and some of the arrangements by the late Eddie Huckridge are really great."