I got deafened by a brass band while sitting on a Birmingham park bench - but it wasn't pants

Birmingham’s Heavy Beat Band are surprising visitors in Birmingham city centre with a range of tunes - and the reason may surprise you
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As a stunt, it takes some brass neck!

And it may not have hit the right note with all who fell victim to a bizarre wind instrument stalking spree.

Today (Friday, December 15) unsuspecting shoppers were targeted by four members of Birmingham’s Heavy Beat Band. You may have been among them during the undercover orchestral manoeuvre. They picked a victim, sneaked up and let rip.

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I received the deafening first bars of “Land of Hope and Glory” while making notes on a Birmingham city centre park bench. It was an oompah earful delivered at full blast.

But at least my musical raid was patriotic. Others were ambushed by New Orleans jazz, the band’s speciality. Felicity Evans, who played the baritone saxophone, said: “So far, the reaction has been surprise, great surprise.”

Heavy Beat Band surprise Birmingham shoppers with surprise performancesHeavy Beat Band surprise Birmingham shoppers with surprise performances
Heavy Beat Band surprise Birmingham shoppers with surprise performances

Charlie Lancaster, who did his best to hide a sousaphone, agreed. “Just shock so far,” he said. “But it’s early days, there’s been no anger.” The others causing musical mayhem were Dave Sear, on trombone, and trumpet player Max Astbury.

The eight-piece band, which specialises in New Orleans jazz, performs regularly in Birmingham pubs. Today they employed surprise and stealth tactics on the streets. They were in the city centre to promote a new outdoor clothing range by Birmingham companies Wesn and P&Co. The line is entitled “Bold as Brass”.

An unusual advertising campaign, but it may have worked. Many may have needed a new pair of trousers after being surprised by the Heavy Beat Band!

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