All of us at Derby Concert Band were saddened to hear of the recent death of John Watson.
John was the musical director and conductor of the Band from 2003 to 2009. In those six years he developed the Band into a significant high quality musical organisation.
One of John’s special qualities as MD was his ability to have fun alongside challenging and developing the musical skills of the Band. A classic example of this was at our Global Variations concert at Buxton in 2009. This was a very exciting programme of music that terrified many members of the Band, but because of John’s inspiration, leadership skills, and humour, we rose to the challenge he had set us and we played one of our best-ever performances. Very few musical directors could have drawn that out of us.
John developed lasting friendships with many members of the Band. He was highly respected and loved. His enduring legacy to the Band has been to enable us to realise our potential and continue to progress. He will be sorely missed by the whole Band, and our thoughts are with Caroline and the rest of his young family at this very sad time.