Archive for the 'trombone' Category


Tribute: Ken Mountain

Ken was born in December 1920 and would have celebrated his 100th birthday this December. In recent months Ken was well looked after by John and his family; Ken was married to Carol, John’s mum.

Ken loved his music and when he came to our house for his Sunday lunch, Ken would always bring different records and conduct to them whilst lunch was being served and eaten.  He was  quick to give advice about the speeds and dynamics of music, particularly when the Band was rehearsing music that Ken was familiar with.

When Norman Short retired as Sheffield Citadel Bandmaster, he eventually took responsibility for the Divisional Fellowship Band, and this was just the boost Ken needed at that time. Bandmaster Norman was brilliant with Ken, taking him to rehearsals and festivals, and then later going to collect Ken and take him to the Sunday morning meeting at The Citadel.

Ken finished his banding career as a second trombone player but his main love was the extensive time when he was the Citadel Band’s bass trombone player.  As Ken often said, “Yer can’t beat G trom.  Best instrument in the band.”  You could certainly hear Ken.  It became obvious to a young bandsman such as myself who sat and marched next to Ken, how much he enjoyed his service in the Citadel Band as the “Bass trom” player.  Ken’s brother Wilf was a very fine euphonium player, moving to Canada, doing a lot of solo work, and becoming the corps bandmaster at Hamilton.  Ken was very proud of Wilf.

Ken loved to march, especially when the band was playing 6/8 marches, and he was in his own little world when marching from Fitzalan Square to the old Citadel on Cross Burgess Street.  The pride he had in playing his part well, and loudly, was evident, and he would frequently give advice about how 6/8 marches should be played on “The March”.  Ken had been a soldier in the regular Army and brought his love of marching with him when he returned to civilian life.

There are many stories one could recount when thinking of Ken but my remaining memory of him will be in the high standards he set himself, and expected of other people.  One of his favourite congregational songs was “What a Friend We Have In Jesus”.  He knew his Saviour well and was proud to serve his Lord, as a Citadel bandsman.

It was a pleasure to sit beside Ken when I joined the band; a tremendous character, he provided many humorous moments, but above all, he clearly was a bandsman for the best of reasons: he was playing for the Lord he knew and was delighted to serve.

Ian Wileman

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February 2023
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