We sing for the pure enjoyment of singing. Currently we are eleven male vocalists – five tenors and six bass – who have been individual members of various choirs throughout our busy lives until we came together eight years ago to form a singing group that specializes in music from the 1960s era (the Swinging Sixties).
We select music from the huge range of material that we heard during our youth – or perhaps it was yesterday on Radio 2? Our aim is to reproduce the authentic sounds of the original recordings along with instrumental backing from guitar and light percussion. The formula appears to be working; for each of the last three years we have been requested to perform at around 40 concerts (we call them ‘gigs’ to make us feel like a real Sixties group!).
The members of the group live in Chippenham, Wiltshire or the surrounding villages. The majority of our performances raise funds for a local charity that organizes holiday activities for children with special needs; all profits from our three CD recordings have been also dedicated to that charity. At our AGM in July 2016 our treasurer announced we had succeeded in raising £13,000 for the charity over the last seven years.
The following YouTube video introduces each of the singers; if the names of the singers are not displayed in the video then ensure you select the ‘CC’ playback option (bottom right) in the video pane:-
There are many organizations that provide us with regular bookings: the Women’s Institute; luncheon clubs; handicapped clubs; day centres. With just eleven members we are able to go to places where more traditional choirs would never fit. We visit many of the residential and care homes around the Wiltshire area; sometimes there is very little room left once the audience is in place and we are set up to perform!
Obviously, our appeal is to a certain age group who remember the days of the 1960s, and we can see that our musical efforts really do brighten up the lives of our audiences. As you the reader probably know, music is a great communicator and can breaks down barriers. We have made many performances to audiences of dementia sufferers who initially appeared to hold no prospect of being entertained, and yet after one or two songs we could see some visible interest from them – fingers or toes tapping. After such visits we have received feedback from their relatives and carers to say how much everyone enjoyed the music.
We are extremely lucky to have Phil Hall as our musical director. Phil has played lead guitar in a number of local groups down the years, and brings a great deal of stage experience to us along with his knowledge of vocal harmonies. He is a brilliant guitarist who can burst into most Sixties hits at the drop of a hat. We are also very thankful for the Internet and ‘Youtube’ as the source of potential material. As well as covering the usual SATB songs from artists such as the Beatles and Elvis, our repertoire includes hits from the Everly Brothers, Neil Diamond, The Byrds, Credance Clearwater Revival, Johnny Kidd and Billy J Kramer – and many, many more.
You may be wondering why the name ‘End Of The Track’. Our name has nothing to do with the railways – although some may think we look like a pile of old buffers. No, the name comes from the location of our weekly rehearsals at the end of a farm track.
The address of the website for the group is http://www.eott.co.uk
Funds raised by the group are donated to the North Wilts Holiday Club. This charity pays for Summertime activities for the children and young adults at St Nicholas’s School in Chippenham. Further information about this charity is available via their website:-