“Slides Rule,” a celebration of the trombone, will be the theme for the 24th annual Great American Brass Band Festival June 7-9 in Danville.
Considered by some “The King of Instruments,” the trombone plays a major role in brass bands, and will be especially featured throughout the weekend.
Top-flight exponents of the “slush pump” like Wycliffe Gordon and Scott Hartmann — along with the Millennium Brass, Brett Baker (England), and bass trombonist Martin McCain — will head up a line-up of trombone soloists.
Trombone choirs will include both the award-winning Black Dyke Youth Trombone Quartet from the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth Trombones, a gathering of trombone professors and selected top students from nearly every Kentucky university music department.
Traditional favorites in the wind band category include the host Advocate Brass Band and the 202nd Army Band.
The array of brass bands for 2013 runs the gamut from the professional River City Brass Band of Pittsburgh, Pa., to several New Orleans jazz brass bands, including the return of Stooges Brass Band.
The groups will include the Georgia Brass Band, Lexington (Ky.) Brass Band, and the Fountain City Youth Brass Band from Kansas City.
Every year, a Salvation Army brass band comes to town, and this year the Oshawa Temple Band from Ontario, Canada, will carry on the tradition. The band will fill its major role in the Sunday morning worship service.
The festival will host a brass symposium on Friday — this year, focused on the trombone and its music. Bayou and Brass follows that evening with a concert downtown.
All of the concerts throughout Saturday and Sunday are free and open to the public.
The festival closes with a grand finale Sunday afternoon in Newlin Hall at the Norton Center for the Arts, featuring guest trombonists and the U.S. Army Field Band and Chorus.
Complete schedules and details will be listed on gabbf.org.