Oi Musica’s flagship youth music project Hoots on the Streets offers specialist training and support to youth street bands throughout Scotland. The project was launched in Highland in April 2012, with funding support from Creative Scotland. Since then, over 500 young people have taken part in workshops, masterclasses, training, creative collaborations and performances across Scotland.
Hoots on the Streets worked with four bands – all of whom are open access, welcoming players with no musical experience into their ranks. Each group operates with a youth-led approach to running rehearsals.
The Penguin’s Tuxedo from Nairn was founded by young people in the town who had taken part in street band activities, and wanted to set up something permanent. Based at Nairn Community Centre, they attract a core of dedicated drummers and are developing into an exciting and experienced band. They perform regularly in and around Nairn.
Pace in Grantown-on-Spey feature samba drummers and horn section. They have been running since 2009, originally set up by a Primary 7 class who wanted to continue playing in a street band through secondary school. Pace offers excellent opportunities for local players to develop their playing and performance skills, with members aged 11-15.
Guarana Street Drummers have been running in Aberdeen since 2002. They draw their membership from a huge range of ages and backgrounds (from children to older adults), and they perform a staggering 70-odd gigs per year! Hoots on the Streets is currently working with Guarana’s youth membership, supporting new young leaders to emerge within the band, and to build a horn section for the group.
Pulse of the Place from Edinburgh is Scotland’s original and largest youth samba band. From humble beginnings as half a dozen young teens drumming at Duncan Place Resource Centre in Leith each week, the group grew and grew until in 2012 they took more than 70 youth drummers to perform at Olympic Park for the Paralympic festivities! Pulse of the Place is currently bringing on a new wave of youth leaders, with Hoots on the Streets supporting the process.
TNT Youth Street Band
Formerly the Highland Youth Street Band, Hoots on the Streets established Scotland’s first regional youth street band in autumn 2012, bringing together players from local groups in an exciting cross-region collaboration. During summer 2014 the group expanded to include players from Aberdeen, and TNT Youth Street Band was born!
The group aims to support local bands throughout the region by providing their members with the opportunity to take their skills to the next level. The membership is made up from players from The Penguin’s Tuxedo, Pace and Guarana Street Band. They meet around 6 times per year, play regular gigs through the summer, and are tutored by some of Scotland’s top street band musicians, including Roddy Dickson (SambaYaBamba), Tom Pickles (Orkestra del Sol / Horndog Brass Band), Rory Clark (Puff Uproar) and our very own Marcus Britton.
In Autumn 2014, Oi Musica worked in partnership with award-winning youth music charity Tinderbox Project to support the establishing of their newest youth ensemble – Frontiers Orchestra. Frontiers invites Edinburgh’s young people – both players and non-players – to join forces and build a band like the city has never seen before!
With funding from Creative Scotland, we delivered a short programme of taster and recruitment workshops across the city, followed by a 5-week course of rehearsals at North Edinburgh Arts Centre. During the course, the ensemble developed a core of young orchestral instrumentalists, a samba drumming section, guitarists & keyboardists, a ukelele section, singers, live electronics and an 8-strong balafon section.
Here is a clip of Frontiers Orchestra’s first public performance, at Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre (in the foyer) on November 25th 2014.
The project continues throughout 2015, and is open to young people aged 11 – 25 from all walks of life and from all corners of the city, and accommodates all instruments at all levels.
This is an exciting and rare opportunity for Edinburgh’s young people. If you are a teacher, youth worker, arts or community worker, or if you know of a group of young people who would like to take part, please get in touch with Tinderbox Project NOW!
admin @ tinderboxproject.co.uk (remove spaces when pasting into an email)
Oi Musica worked with a handful of young people to support the launch of the project, creating digital music tracks and learning music making skills. More info here:
Marking the opening of Seven Lochs Wetland Park in East Glasgow, Sound Out brought together a whole range of musicians from the area to celebrate East Glasgow’s diversity, and the outdoor opportunities offered by the new park. With support from Platform Arts and The Bridge in Easterhouse, Marcus worked with over 80 musicians to create a series of collaborative performances.
To mark the end of the project, in November 2014, the groups involved recorded their set at The Bridge. The recording features East End Voices Community Choir; samba bands and brass & reed pupils from Lochend, Smithycroft and All Saints secondary schools, and local singers The Undecided from The Musical Workshop.
SoundOut@SevenLochs Big Band – ‘No Diggity’
SoundOut@SevenLochs Big Band – ‘No No No / Down In The River’
SoundOut@SevenLochs Big Band – ‘Follow The Heron’
We ran an open Massed Band workshop for all comers and all abilities, and after a 45-min rehearsal, we brought 70 players together for a rendition of ‘Hidden Dub’ – a specially-arranged medley for the event. Brass & wind, fiddles & strings and samba bateria. Here’s how it sounded…
In June 2013, Marcus & Oli spent two hours working with 40 drummers and 40 brass players from across Scotland to put together an arrangement of Daft Punk’s ‘Get Lucky’. The young musicians were all taking place in the Music for Youth’s National Festival Scotland.