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New pieces for your delectation

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Have a listen on Soundcloud to my latest arrangements: It Must Be Love, and Romance from 'The Gadfly'. I've been hard at it writing music, and a work for next Christmas based on  global Christmas tunes in under way...

You can also listen to all my works that have been recorded by bands including Fodens, SW Comms Band, Brackley & District Band and the Leyland Band, plus Sibelius 7 audio files of all the others.




Happy New Year!

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Minions_HNYWE would like to wish all our customers a melodious, harmonious and very happy new year, and hope that 2015 is successful for you all!

A Year of Faith

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I'm very pleased that after being recommended by Dan Callow at One Life Music, I'm in the process of transcribing all eight songs from Andy Severyn's album 'A Year of Faith'.

I'll be producing piano and voice sheet music to enable Andy to spread the Word to schools and colleges everywhere.

Check out the link and buy his album - you'll be glad you did!



Exeter Symphony Orchestra concert

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Having received the music for this concert yesterday, I can safely say that it's going to be a challenge! Yes, I know the Holst very well indeed, but Vaughan William's Symphony No.6 in E minor is new to me - well at least on tuba it is! As ever with his music, this is breathtaking in it's harmonic complexity, and interweaving counterpoint. I love it! They're the only two pieces that feature the tuba, but I'll enjoy listening to the other works.

As it's 2014 and the Centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, why not get yourself down to Southernhay United Reformed Church on Saturday 15th November starting at 7.30pm and have a listen?


Exeter Symphony Orchestra concert

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Having received the music for this concert yesterday, I can safely say that it's going to be a challenge! Yes, I know the Holst very well indeed, but Vaughan William's Symphony No.6 in E minor is new to me - well at least on tuba it is! As ever with his music, this is breathtaking in it's harmonic complexity, and interweaving counterpoint. I love it! They're the only two pieces that feature the tuba, but I'll enjoy listening to the other works

As it's 2014 and the Centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, why not get yourself down to Southernhay United Reformed Church on Saturday 15th November starting at 7.30pm and have a listen?



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Here's a new arrangement for you. Check out my new version of 'The Twelve Days of Christmas'. Written specifically for bands of an intermediate standard - that is: it's not too difficult, it's in a playable key (keys, actually - it modulates twice ending up in Ab), there's no unnecessary running around, and the geography makes sense!

Hope you like it - I'm sure your audiences will.


Jesus Christ Superstar

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Now that I seem to be on the mend and looking forward again instead of backwards, it's show time! My favourite all time musical (don't ask me why - it just is - maybe because it set a new level on the playing field of musicals when it was written and first staged) and I'm playing drums in this production at Axminster Guildhall from 18th - 22nd November.

Interesting set up...but I'll let you find out when you come and see it!

Tickets available from The Box Office (Archway Bookshop) on 01297 33595.


Cornish Carols for Christmas

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Coming very soon for your delectation, and just in time for Christmas: A Cavalcade of Cornish Carols for brass band and concert wind band:

Adoration (Angels from the Realms) J. Newsome
Chorus: Prepare the Song of Praise - J. Newsome
The Star of Jacob - S. Nicholas
Hark! The Christmas Bells! - S. Nicholas
The Star of Bethlehem - S. Nicholas
Shepherds Keeping Watch - S. Nicholas
Great Soul - Kenneth Pelmear
Newquay - Kenneth Pelmear
St Day - Kenneth Pelmear
Hail, Sacred Day, Auspicious Morn! - Thomas Merritt
Awake, Awake the Lofty Song - Thomas Merritt
Lo! He Comes, and Infant Stranger - Thomas Merritt
Hark the Glad Sound! The Saviour Comes - Thomas Merritt
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing - Thomas Merritt

....and many more by Thomas Merritt and by R. H. Heath.


To Dance or not to Dance?

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Ok let me explain. It's a play on words you see: Dances with Wolves = Dance is With Music - because my name is 'Dance' - geddit?

We do not provide the following:

  • Dancing lessons (of any kind)
  • Disco Music (I am not a DJ and especially not at weddings)
  • Big Bands (although I can put you in touch)
  • Dance Bands (again, I can point you in the right direction)
  • One-Man-Bands (I am a musician, NOT a magician)

So, unless you want a conductor, music composed or arranged, your musical instrument fixed, brass lessons, or to book me to play drums/brass for you, PLEASE look elsewhere!

Thank you for having a browse on my website though!

discoRock_Bandesounds of the sixtiesOne_Man_Band



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Hot off the press:

As I've had a lot of time on my hands recently, I've been able to do a great deal of work on my Whole Class Wider Opportunities Course. It's aimed at beginner level (Years 4, 5 and 6) and it now includes full backing tracks for all the pieces, and notation as well as lettered notes. It works best with instruments in Bb, but there is also a version available in C so that that these instruments can play together. It's in the form of a Powerpoint presentation with cool slide transitions and illustrations on each slide.

Get in touch for more information.


Sound Cloud

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Having had some productive conversations with other composers and arrangers recently, notably Michael 'Mac' McDermott, I've now discovered the best and most effective ways of getting sound clips of my works attached to the site for your perusal and enjoyment, and hopefully purchase!

I'm going to do two things: Firstly I'm going to upload a sound clip to each entry on our Music Directory, and I'm also going to add some or all of them to our new Sound Cloud page.

It's going to be a labour of love, however, so bear with me until I sort out all the files - there are hundreds!!

09/10/2014 UPDATE: There are now 50 tracks to listen to on Soundcloud with more to come!


The new, sensible estate car!

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Finally! A little bit of luck has come our way, and with the sale of the very poorly DiWM Van and the Baritone Saxophone, we've managed to put enough money together to buy that sensible estate car after all.

Here's the new DiWM beastie - affectionately known as 'Sandra' to her friends. She's a VW Golf GT TDi 110 Estate and there's bags of room for a BBb Bass, or set of drums, or a set of Wider Opps brass, but probably not all three at the same time!


The Van is Dead - Long Live the Sensible Estate Car!

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Well it had to happen I suppose. We bought the van in 2012 and turned it into a mobile workshop, but after having to spend a small fortune in repairs in the last year, we have finally decided that enough is enouh, and the van is for sale for spares or repairs on Ebay.

Sad really - after thousands of trouble-free miles. First the starter motor and electrical problems, then the fuel pump, followed by the EGR unit, and finally a cracked engine casing under the rocker cover and associated valve issues has sealed it's demise. After spending another £400 having the EGR unit replaced and the head bolts tightened (twice), the van made it to Exeter and back twice before expiring in the most spectacular fashion in clouds of blue and white smoke right outside Honiton Garage that had been repairing it!

That's where is now is, until such time as the Ebay auction ends and someone takes it off our hands.

PS: 18th August 2014: I'm happy to say that the van has found a new home in Cullompton, and will soon be reunited with a replacement engine. Just a small issue: Note to self - abandon van slightly nearer a power source so that an extension lead will reach it and you have some finger nails left after manually picking all the signage off!



For King and Country: Update:

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Remember the 'For King and Country' event I was involved in for The National Trust earlier this year? Well, they've made a short documentary film about it. It's rather good! Fortunately, I only appear in it briefly (and not very spectacularly) but it's me playing 'The Last Post' towards the end of the film. It's well worth a watch, and it's also well worth a visit to Killerton House to see their Field of Ceramic Poppies and the exhibition about how the Great War affected the lives of local people.

Great community event making - here's the links:

For King and Country from Steve Cayley on Vimeo.



Trinity Guildhall Exam Results

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Well! After all that hard work and practice, and an exhausting day last Monday at Exeter School, I'm pleased to announce that all my students passed their brass grade exams, some with merit. Well done to all of you, and thank you to the schools and parents for being so supportive - they couldn't do this without your continued support.

I'm very proud of you all - well done!

Now, stop smiling, get your trumpet out, and let's start with some long notes........!!

'For King and Country' - at The National Trust

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national-trust-logoOver the two days Thursday 11th June and Friday 12th June 2014, Dance is With Music were delighted to have been invited by The National Trust to take part in a 1st World War commemorative event called 'For King and Country' at Killerton House.

Having arranged a simple version of  'It's a Long Way to Tipperary' for wind players young and, shall we say mature, Colin was delighted to go to both Clyst Vale Community College and Broadclyst Primary School to rehearse the piece with children who were taking part in the event, and to rehearse the whole event at Killerton House with the 250 young people taking part. Colin also performed The Last Post in a poignant and moving finale.

Blessed with suitably summer weather, the event was a resounding success, and provided a 'snapshot in time' for events that occured 100 years ago that still influence our lives today. Very educational for the children, and a massive 'well done' to Eileen Dillon (Learning Officer from The National Trust) who wrote and co-ordinated the whole event - and managed to stay sane!

The march from Killerton House to Killerton Chapel whilst playing was a challenge to say the least. but nothing like the challenge our brave men faced in 1914, and the event concluded with the planting of a field of ceramic poppies the children had made, which will become a feature at Killerton during August 2014.


Lest We Forget!


Photographs by Steven Haywood, and reproduced by kind permission of The National Trust.



Summer 2014

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As the 2014 Summer Season approaches, I'm pleased to say that I've been busier than ever (how did I ever fit in being a policeman for 28 years??) - with new arrangements and compositions being published, lots of new students - many taking their Trinity Grade exams next month - and a workshop full of instruments to sort through! It all makes time fly by, and the bank balance look a little healthier!

I've been doing more new piano arrangements for Dan Callow at One Life Music, and have a whole concert of tunes to arrange for Crediton Operatic and Drama Society too, not to mention various concert perfomances, and work with Babcock LDP Music Service, the Devon Youth Wind Orchestra and the Devon County Youth Brass Band! There's also the exciting prosect of hearing professional recordings of my work by The Leyland Band after a session for MF Publications last weekend.

I deliberately haven't made this common knowledge until now, but this seems like a good opportunity to formally announce it: I've officially joined the ranks of Sidmouth Town Band on BBb Bass after a probationary period (!), and look forward to a long association with them, hopefully including performances of my own work.



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A bit of sad news for you all I'm afraid. For personal reasons I have decided that the time has come for me to leave the Lympstone South West Telecoms Band. My association with the band dates back to the summer of 1972 when I first joined the band as a spotty youth when it was still based in the Methodist Church at Topsham. The Musical Director at that time was the legendary Les Jennings, and I went to my first SWBBA Contest at the Festival Theatre in Paignton with the band playing 2nd horn! How things have changed. The then Principal Cornet David Adams is still amongst my best friends now. We've subsequently played together in the Band of the Devon & Cornwall Constabulary, and he was my Principal Cornet during my time as conductor of the City of Exeter Railway Band. The Musical Director of the Lympstone Band now - Charlie Fleming and I too have been in bands together - notably HMS Heron Volunteer Band (RNAS Yeovilton) and Devonport Naval Base Volunteer Band whilst he was a Colour Sergeant in the Band of Her Majesty's Royal Marines.

As I leave the band, it is arguably the best in Devon, sits firmly in the 1st Section, and has a thriving Training Band. I'm very pleased to have been associated with the band over such a long period of time, despite there being some lengthy gaps in that time due to my police service amongst other things. Countless concerts, hundreds of contests, many wins - including a National Final, and some not so good results too. I've played from soprano cornet to BBb bass - not for the first time in a band either!

I would like to publicly raise a glass to the band and wish it every success in future years. Those who need to know are aware of the reasons for my decision, and I have no intention of airing them here. I will most certainly NOT be giving up playing, and have several workshops to go to this year on both drums and bass, but have no plans to shift my allegiance to another band at this time.


Christmas Music!

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Hoorah! At last, I hear you say! Yes, After many problems and setbacks, I have finally found time to replace the Christmas arrangement of 'For Unto A Son Is Born' from Handel's 'Messiah' that I lost when my computer died last year. It's probably (definitely) different from the original one, but it's still scored for a brass quartet of solo cornet, solo horn, euphonium and BBb bass together with tutti brass band, and is in slightly comedic style complete with choreography! It's not easy though, and needs to be taken at the right tempo, unless your soloists are o virtuoso standard. I've also produced a warm and snuggly version of 'Ding Dong Merrily on High' that's inspired by and based on the 2010 Nigel Hess version for piano and strings from his 2010 album 'Silent Nights'. It has lovely, different harmonies, and a warm texture quite unlike the normal carol - you'll love it!

I'm also working on a 'Cavalcade of Cornish Carols' based on some old manunscripts I've acquired. Really looking forward to this one, but you might just have to wait until 2014 to hear it!

Then there's 'Wendy's Carol'. What can I tell you about this apart from it brought a tear to my eye? Having been approached by Len Jones (aged 87) who had lost first his wife, and then his daughter to cancer, he sang me this entire carol he'd 'written', which is a brief and succinct telling of the Christmas Story, and I wrote down the melody and created the harmonic structure from that. The setting is for SATB and piano.

Len is currently in hospital having treatment for cancer himself, and it is intended to have this carol (dedicated to his daughter's memory) performed at Christmas in 2013, and then recorded to raise funds for Cancer Relief UK.


Arts Award

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I spent a very fruitful day at the South West Music School recently, and had a day's training to become an Assessor for the Trinity Guildhall Arts Award scheme. Whilst not exactly qualifying as an expert just yet, I shall gradually get my head around this, and introduce it as an option alongside my teaching and mentoring as it seems to fit quite nicely. I'll be registered on the websites within a few weeks, and will add those links to this site when I can....

Well worth reading up about if you're interested - just click on the images below:


It's Movember!!

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Yes! It's that time of the year again, and 50% of the staff here at Dance is With Music will be partaking and growing a moustache to promote awareness of men's health issues, including prostate and testicular cancer and mental health. Catherine has decided not to grow one, but will be supporting from the sidelines! I'm part of the Le-Roy Boys Team, and together we intend to do our best to raise some well needed funds for the cause.

Please be generous and click on the 'Movember' image below which will link you my 'Mo Space' where you can donate or leave suitably witty comments! Thank you in advance.



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Exmouth Musical Theatre Company

A quick thank you to Colin - behind the scenes of our production of Jesus Christ Superstar recently, Colin edited, re-wrote or created some terrific rehearsal backing tracks to ease the path to the show's success. Nothing was too much trouble, and the end product (I know how awkward it was to achieve) was very professional - even though we kept asking for more! He wasn't bad in the pit orchestra on the drums either! Thanks Colin.

Sounds of The Sixties

Colin's arrangements of our medleys for full orchestra from piano score were excellent, original and creatively scored, and stood up to theatre use to enhance dramatically the quality of our production - many thanks Colin!

Exmouth Musical Theatre Company

Jesus Christ Superstar

A quick thank you for Colin. Behind the scenes of our recent production of Jesus Christ Superstar, Colin produced, edited, arranged, wrote or re-wrote rehearsal backing tracks to assist our production team towards the eventual success of the show. Nothing was too much trouble, despite our requests for tempo amendments! Thanks Colin - and you weren't bad on the drums in the pit orchestra either!


A massive thanks Colin - you worked like a demon to produce the score and parts for our pantomine Pinocchio in Ilminster from scant, hand-written scraps of paper. The end product was extremely professional at a very reasonable cost - even though the trumpet player complained about the triplets! Many, many thanks.

Midnight in Moscow

Hi Colin, Thought you'd like to know, Midnight in Moscow for trombone trio has had two public airings by our band so far, and both went down very well; first in a concert, then in an entertainment contest (which we won!). Great arrangement - liked by all. Thank you! Best wishes Colin Coates

Wired @ Exmouth 2011

Hi guys - saw Wired at The First and Last in Exmouth a year or so back, and apart from loving the yellow drum kit, I thought Colin's drumming was fantastic!  He put so much into it - rather like Keith Moon of The Who fame, and lifted the whole performance as a result - very tight and very professional. I love drummers that go that extra mile - nice one Colin - and a great site too!

One Life Music (Dan Callow)

Colin Dance has worked sensitively and professionally with us over the last few years arranging scores for our recent assembly book and for one off commissions, always considering the mood or relevance of a piece and succeeding in our endeavour to keep each piece unique. He has arranged songs for piano as well as writing further parts for voice or for a particular instrument or ensemble. I would be more than happy to recommend 'Dance is With Music' services. Dan Callow

City of Exeter Railway Band

What a breath of fresh air! I witnessed Colin conducting the City of Exeter Railway Band in the Manor Gardens at Exmouth  last summer, and not only was I impressed by his ability as a musician and conductor, but also by the way he communicated with his players. He clearly put them at ease and brought the best out in them.  A lovely concert with good humour and humility - and, I might add, some seriosuly good arrangements and compositions by Colin too.

Midnight in Moscow - the sequel

Hi Colin, Thought you'd like to know we've enjoyed many successful airings of Midnight in Moscow throughout the year, including several concerts, park engagements and an entertainment contest (which we won!). Most recent was a golf club Xmas party last night - went down a storm! Thanks for an excellent piece - appreciated by all. Merry Xmas and Happy New Year from CWA Brass

Hawkes 'Clippertone' trumpet

Can I just once again say what a fantastic job you did with my ancient (Hawkes & Co 'Clippertone)' trumpet - it's very impressive indeed, and my grandson is absolutely delighted with his Christmas present. He didn't stop playing it the whole time he was here (!) and has now taken the trumpet back to America with him and will be having lessons on his return to school. I can't thank you enough. The difference in the condition in which you received the instrument to how it was when I received it back is amazing. Thank you so much -...

Harry Rossiter

Colin is a very versatile musician, composer, music arranger and musical director. As a sideline he is engaged in repair and care of brass bånd instruments and other musical artifacts. His musical direction of brass bands is second to none in my long experience of brass bands. I wish him well.

Trumpet servicing

Many thanks for the swift and professional repair and service on my trumpet (Bach Strad). I have had the instrument for a little over 5 years now and and bought it from my brother-in-law who I know looked after it very well so I was starting to feel a little guilty about neglecting it. It always seemed like too much of a chore given the apparent lack of people in Exeter who can service and repair brass instruments. The stuck tuning slide was the final straw and I was very relieved to find your website. It was all so easy...

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