We are delighted to announce our new look baritone section, with Joel Collier moving up to 1st, and Jamie Jones joining the band on 2nd.

Joel is from Philadelphia USA and joined Cory in 2023, relocating to Wales last May. Starting his banding with the Salvation Army, he went on to study euphonium to doctorate level in the US and then became an assistant professor at Allen University, Columbia until last year. He now works at Cardiff University and has for a number of years been developing a name for himself as a composer.

Cory Band Musical Director Philip Harper commented: “Joel has really impressed me since he got his chance on 1st baritone at the beginning of the year. He is full of ambition and soaks up new experiences like a sponge. I’m certain he will grasp this opportunity with both hands and really establish himself as another excellent Cory principal player.”

Commenting on his new role, Joel said “This past year playing with Cory has been nothing short of incredible. To now have the opportunity to take the solo baritone seat is a dream come true!“

Philip continued: “What has also worked really well is Joel’s partnership with Jamie Jones, a player I have known since he came up through the Gwent Youth Band in the early 2000s and a regular recent dep for Cory which included an appearance at the 2023 European Brass Band Championships in Malmo. Jamie is a real team player, and I’m delighted that he has accepted the 2nd baritone position.”

Jamie said “Phil and the band have been so friendly and welcoming. It’s an incredible opportunity and I’m going to enjoy every moment. I’m really looking forward to playing regularly again. A huge thank you also to Usk Brass Band for changing their rehearsal night enabling me to take up this position whilst allowing me to continue as their Musical Director. 

Both players will be taking up their positions with immediate effect and their first contest outing as a pair will be the Welsh Regional contest this March.

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