Discussion in 'Royal Marines Band' started by Rover, Oct 6, 2017.
Few realise that the Royal Marines Band Service, as well as being Level 3 first aid trained medical personnel (not stretcher bearers), during their last Herrick tour, also undertook roles as drivers and undertook group force protection duties (same as the RAF Regiment) at Camp Bastion.
The RMBS are dual-role, unlike all other military bands.
The attached link is a diary account of the Band Service who were embarked on HMHS Uganda during the Falklands War. It was written by a former WO2 Bandmaster who has recently deceased. It highlights the work of the band during hostilities. Great read.
The band service also are getting ready to deploy a band on the Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier and they will certainly be dual role on board, given the manning requirement on board!
A really interesting and informative diary. Thank you very much for posting that.
Thanks for that download @Caversham, a fascinating read. The transformation from concerts to medical orderlies after the fighting begain is quite stark. 644 casualties processed - incredible.
Good to see a photo of a good friend of mine as a young musician, back in the day. I never even knew he went to the Falklands.
Yep, they will be employed in whole ship duties such as fire fighting & damage control teams, watchkeeping duties and be reponsible for the upkeep of nominated parts of ship. It certainly won't be music all the way.
And to continue the information stream of what the bandies do, the current director of music at RMBS served as second in command of 40 base company in Afghanistan during their 2007/8 deployment and then as the Corps casualty officer.
Defence spending reviews are always accompanied by speculation. An extract from page seven of The Times, Saturday 25 November 2017 relating to the RMBS:
"Questions are also being asked about why the military needs separate schools of music for the army and for the Royal Marines Band Service. Other skills common to the services, such as transport, are combined. "It is not like there is a different type of Mozart for the army and the Royal Marines," a source said. "You might have thought that a defence school of music would make a sensible cost reduction.""
The Navy, Army & RAF already share many common elements of specialisation training including elements of aircrew, engineering, medical, etc., so where commonality occurs, it makes sense to combine training. RMBS undertake 2 years 8 months training and can study up to BMus Hons level. Assuming the other services do likewise, one would hope common sense applies.
The danger, as ever, is lowering standards to the common denominator to reduce costs and operational capability.
If only it were that easy... unfortunatly for the Army they are having to relocate from kneller hall and right now are looking for somewhere to go.
The chance of the RMSoM moving from the old DQs in Portsmouth are close to none existent due to the great facilities that an old prison gives with its old cells. I believe however that they may consider moving the army down to Pompey but what will happen is yet to be seen.
As im sure we can all agree, the RMBS is on a different level to the army, so yes while a reduction in cost would be good, it may prove more difficult to keep the high RM standards with a mixed training environment.
As far as i am aware the RMBS is the only one of the three services that will take people in on intruments they did not previously play in order to promote general musicianship. That is what makes the RMSoM unique, its teaching set up with profesional tutors for each musician/bugler.
Also, I'm sure I remember being told that the band actually make enough money from concert performances to be virtually self funding, but perhaps that was in a different era?
Yes. Also, I'm suspicious of media quoting an un-named "source".
Just as likely to be the vivid imagination of a sub-editor.
Thats an interesting statement.
You could axe the foreign aid budget. That’s a lot of cash.
Interesting in what way?
Maybe i should have made it more clear that i can only really speak from a musical perspective. Not to be completly bias, I have played alongside an Army band or two and the standard of music produced is lower than that produced by the RMBS. I believe that is through no fault of the individuals but through the way the Army has created its musicians. Having said that, yes there could be benifit for them recieving the same training as the RMBS but at what cost to the standard of the Royal Marines musicians?
I went to a tri service pass out last year where the Parachute Regiment band played. I dont want to criticise too harshly but suffice to say the difference between theirs and the RMBS performances I have seen was like night and day.
I've a very limited knowledge of the RMBS but my perception is that it is regarded as being a benchmark of high standards.
I speculate that a tri-service school for musicians would inevitably mean a tri-service standard. The potential risk of that standard being lower than the current independent RMBS standard is high.
I completely agree with you. Having marched or seen several bands, pipe bands included, there is a distinct sound and bearing to the RM band. And they are bloody good at drill.
It’s an interesting statement that can be taken out and applied to other current issues with the corps and close combat roles.
Separate names with a comma.