More Rat Pack US Tour Dates/End Of An Era

Now we’ve managed to get our work visas sorted, I guess it’s safe to announce that I’ll be out on the road with “The Rat Pack – Live At The Sands” US Tour from next week. We kick off in Salt Lake City, Utah on October 7th. The following week we visit Tempe, Arizona. Further dates follow in November with visits to Omaha NE, Oklahoma City and Tulsa (both in Oklahoma!).

Before that, I’ll be bidding a fond farewell to the Rat Pack European Tour on Saturday 4th October in Preston. Ahead of the US Tour and my subsequent emigration to the United States, I’ve handed my notice in. I’ll be back in the UK from late November, primarily to finalise my US Visa to move over. It’s possible that I’ll dep on a few Rat Pack dates on the Christmas Tour in December; we’ll have to wait and see. In any case, I hope to have left the UK by sometime in January 2009.

It’s odd to be leaving all my friends on the show after 4 and a half years. I’ll still get my Rat Pack fix, of course, with the US Tour with which I’ll continue for the time being. That’s a curious situation though, because I’m so used to playing with the same band in the UK whereas we meet new musicians in every venue in the States. I’ll really miss the guys and a huge vote of thanks goes out to all of them, particularly the Brass section: Kevin Ferris and Dave Ford (trumpets), and Keith Hutton, Andy Watson and Bruce Douglas (trombones). What else can I say? You guys are awesome to play and hang with and it’s been a huge honour to know you all! Thanks for putting up with me!

So where to next? The short answer is New York! My long suffering fiancee Cynthia and I are getting married (at last) and I’m joining her over there rather than vice versa. At least, that’s the plan – the Visa isn’t completely finalised yet, although it seems to be running smoothly at the moment. So, if you’re in the New York area, or indeed on tour anywhere in the US, and need a Trumpet player from mid-January on; please give me a call. I’d love to here from you.

More news about all of this will follow in due course….

September ’08

This month sees Bryan returning to The Rat Pack – Live From Las Vegas, following the tour’s summer break. They kick off in Belfast, at the marvellous Grand Opera House, on Monday the 8th. The previous weekend Bryan will be performing with Mark Gillbanks and his fine orchestra for a couple of events. September also sees Rat Pack dates in Sunderland and Southport.

Perhaps more importantly, this month also marks the inaugural concert with the Lower Austria Concert Jazz Orchestra, to which Bryan was recently appointed as Lead Trumpet. Bryan will be visiting Austria twice in September, first to rehearse with the Orchestra and then to perform in the concert at the St. Pölten Jazz Festival on the 27th. The program is challenging but looks like a lot of fun; it’s entitled “Murdering The Classics” and features, amongst other works, the Stan Kenton version of Bernstein’s West Side Story.

Looking ahead to October, Bryan expects to be returning to the USA with the Rat Pack US National Tour. Visa permitting, he will be visiting Salt Lake City, Utah and Tempe, Arizona.

In any of the locales he visits, Bryan is always available to teach Trumpet Lessons; something he’s been doing a lot of lately! If you’re interested in organising a lesson, please check the Calendar to see when he’s nearby and get in touch to set it up.

Bryan had a fantastic trip to Austria at the end of May, playing with Thomas Gansch and his band; Gansch & Roses. The first concert they played, at the Schagerl Brass Festival, was broadcast live online by We’re promised that, at some stage, highlights from that concert will be made available on their site. In the meantime, please enjoy this video of the band playing Thomas’ Bill Chase tribute – “Der Rock Des Trompeters” – from the gig at Porgy & Bess in Vienna.