Head Shoulders Knees & Toes

Head Shoulders Knees & Toes

Mit Graffiti versprayte Betonmauern, ein altes Fabrikgebäude, aus dem Wasser ragendes Schilf, ein tanzendes Äffchen – all das und mehr bietet das neue Musikvideo der Musikgesellschaft (MG) Lyss. Gespielt wird der Dance-Hit «Head Shoulders Knees & Toes» von Ofenbach und Quarterhead in einer Duettformation mit einem Sousaphon und einer Klarinette.

Seit rund anderthalb Jahren geht die MG Lyss neue Wege. Der Verein spielt ausschliesslich populäre Musik und produziert regelmässig Videoclips, die in den sozialen Medien veröffentlicht werden. Auf diese Weise können die jungen Musizierenden trotz der Covid-19-bedingten Restriktionen weiterhin vor einem Publikum spielen und gemeinsam etwas erarbeiten.

Wie wichtig insbesondere Letzteres ist zeigt sich auch an den Proben in 5er-Gruppen, die der Verein Anfang Februar unter einem entsprechenden Schutzkonzept wieder aufgenommen hat. Nach einer anderthalbmonatigen Pause zeigten sich die Mitglieder überaus motiviert, gemeinsam Musizieren zu können. Ziel der Proben ist das für den 22. Mai geplante Konzert in der Kulturfabrik KUFA Lyss.

Online-Concert in Over 90 Retirement Homes

Online-Concert in Over 90 Retirement Homes

Usually, at this time of the year, the MG Lyss plays christmas music in the various retirement homes in Lyss. As this was not possible this year due to Covid19, the band took to YouTube and streamed their performance to more than 90 retirement homes and hospitals in Switzerland.

Simon Scheurer and Fabrice Brunner presented the performancein a comfortable, old-fashioned living room. The set had been especially decorated for the video – with woolly socks, china, an old saw and a christmas tree. In between the musical pieces, Fabrice Brunner read two christmas stories – one of which he'd written himself – on an old tiled stove. 

The entire production was influenced by Covid19: Practices took place in small groups, audio recordings were done by the musicians one by one and the video was shot in groups of two or three. This way, the band obeyed all the restrictions of confederation and canton.

The response was huge: Cantonal sections of Pro Senectute and Cura Viva recommended the idea to their institutions, local politicians commented the production positively, various interviews were conducted, posts on social media shared and Blick TV even streamed the concert live. In the retirement homes the concert led to bobbing feet, smiling faces, tears of joy as well as a Christmas mood, which is maybe even more important this year.

Reports in the Media

A Musical Weekend

A Musical Weekend

On 26 and 27 September 2020, the MG Lyss had an eventful weekend. After an open-air concert on Saturday, the band travelled to Lucerne on Sunday, where they spent the day together without their instruments.

Aber von Vorne: Am 26. September sollte um 10.30 den BesucherInnen des Samstagsmarktes ursprünglich ein Ständli geboten werden. Aufgrund der schlechten Witterung hat die MG Lyss ihren Auftritt aber kurzerhand in den überdachten Hirschenmarkt vor das Gemeindehaus verlegt. So wurden die LysserInnen beim Gang zur Abstimmung musikalisch begleitet. Gespielt wurde ein abwechslungsreiches Programm von Latin-Pop bis Hans Zimmer. 

On Sunday morning, at 8.30, the band travelled to Lucerne by train, where we met our city guide. She showed us many interesting and beautiful places in the city and introduced us to its history. Even though some members hadn't quite recovered from the evening before, they all watched and listened attentively.

Shortly after noon we enjoyed a deserved lunch at the restaurant 'Rathaus Brauerei' – The home-brewed beer could of course not be missed.

In the afternoon the trip continued with a visit at the 'Blashaus', where we were shown around an instrument-maker's workshop.

Of course we also visited the KKL. After a guided tour through the building and a short apéro, we enjoyed a concert of film music, performed by the 'City Light Symphony Orchestra'.

Chapel Bridge in Lucerne
The MG Lyss on the city tour
The president at work

The MG Lyss Finds New Ways

The MG Lyss Finds New Ways

After a successful show at the Kulturfabrik KUFA Lyss, the band has decided at an assembly of its active members to continue performing as a showband.

Modern, young, fresh and surprising – those are only a few possible adjectives to describe the concert of the MG Lyss.

Last Saturday, shortly after 8 p.m., the lights in the hall of the KUFA Lyss were switched off. The young wind band entered the stage to the sounds of a wind soundscape. The concert started with Thriller by Michael Jackson as well as other hits from the 80s. Afterwards the band went on to play a medley of the best known hip hop beats. Throughout the evening the MG Lyss presented a wide array of light music consisting of current pop songs such as Dance Monkey, older hits like Welcome to the Jungle, jazzy tunes such as Friend Like Me from Aladdin as well as film music by Hans Zimmer. 

The MG Lyss's new concept was well received. The feedback of the audience was all positive. 'Young and old, the joy of the audience was seen of the faces of all'said president Simon Scheurer and continued: 'But the band members had fun as well. Even today they all still have a smile on their faces and that is ultimately the most important thing' . A lot of discipline was necessary to reach this level. The musicians not only trained the musical aspects of the concert, but also invested a whole Sunday to learn how to move on stage with a professional coach. But the biggest surprises of the evening were probably singer Lyenne and rapper Louis. Lyenne impressed with her beautiful voice and Louis not only wrote his own texts, but also demonstrated his skills as an instrumentalist: Towards the end of the programme he took up his trumpet and had a musical duel with one of the saxophone players.

Despite all the positive things there are also some possibilities for improvement. 'We can of course still get better on the musical side of things. And there's also room for improvement concerning the transitions and the show itself'. Scheurer says that this was only the beginning. The band reflected on the concert and decided to continue playing these kinds of shows.

Garden Concerts for the Elderly

Garden Concerts for the Elderly

Last Sunday's garden concerts demonstrate that the corona pandemic can have positive side effects as well. On an initiative of the municipality of Lyss, the MG Lyss organised a concert tour from retirement home to retirement home. Originally planned in groups of five, the concerts were ultimately held with eleven people due to the lifting of restrictions by the FOPH. The band walked between the five retirement homes and pulled the drum set in a handcart.

The MG Lyss played well-known pop songs, but also jazz tunes as well as a quiet arrangement from 'Les Misérables'. The President, Simon Scheurer, says that the residents had fun: 'An honour-member of the society even hat tears in his eyes'. The staff thought it was a well-received event, too.

The concert tour was the first public event by the MG Lyss after a corona-induced break. Today the band will hold its first regular practice – with strict hygiene rules.

MG Lyss raps for #StayHome

MG Lyss raps for #StayHome

The MG Lyss plays hip hop to support the advice of the WHO: #StayHome!

The song ‘Corona is Dictating our Lives’ is an innovative fusion of hip hop and wind music, created by the MG Lyss feat. Swiss German rapper ‘Chiubigigu’. A first musical step in the direction of popular music was originally planned for a concert in May. Due to the corona pandemic, however, this concert had to be moved to September 5, 2020. To stop their instruments from rusting, the MG Lyss created an innovative project: Individual band members recorded themselves with microphones, and afterwards the instrumentals were mixed to create a complete track. In parallel, a text about quarantine, economic recession, but also the reopening of the world and hope was created. Nevertheless, the message stays the same: Stay home!

In the video, the musicians show themselves from their most creative sides. The trombonist is dancing in neon-coloured clothes, the tubist wears a bathrobe, the conductor is relaxing in his garden, the flutist reads her text from a roll of toilet paper, the trumpeter plays on his bicycle and the saxophonist wears a huge hoodie and a baseball cap.

The medley was originally arranged by Michael Künstle under the title ‘Emergency Hip Hop’ for the Swiss band ‘Brass Department’. It contains some of the best known riffs and beats from the history of hip hop: ‘Thrift Shop’, ‘Who’s that Girl’, ‘Get Up’, and many more.

Jingle for World Peace

Jingle for World Peace

Practices and concerts are cancelled due to the corona virus. Nevertheless, the MG Lyss continues on its innovative track.

We produced a jingle for the 'Week for World Peace' by Radio Chico, which will take place from 13 to 21 September 2020 – and all while in home office!

Our in-house composer, Yves Chapuis, had already composed the jingle and planned all the recordings before the current crisis. But because of the virus, we were not able to continue as planned.

Instead, recording devices and microphones were passed from band member to band member and the individual tracks were cut together by Yves. The result – including an exclusive corona-video – is now viewable on YouTube!

#StayAtHome #StayHealthy

History Repeats Itself

History Repeats Itself

'The flu hit our town badly as well. Our two good friends Marti Ernst & Dyli Fritz have been taken from us. As all gatherings are prohibited, we were not able to attend their funeral' – Protocol of the MG Lyss, July - August 1918.

Yves Chapuis – When I first read this entry about a year ago I though, 'luckily, this kind of thing no longer happens today'. I have been proven wrong. The MG Lyss has to cancel all practices in its 150th anniversary year. 

Such a situation demands a lot of solidarity and innovation. Unlike in 1918, we can at least to continue the social aspects of our band and with virtual hang-outs and meetings.

The MG Lyss wishes good health to all its members, fans and supporters. We hope to see you again soon!

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