The Redlands Municipal Band & Orchestra



Picture Credit: Images of America Series, Early Redlands, by Ann Cordy Deegan and Maria Y. Carrillo, 2013.

Redlands'own municipal band, founded in 1887 and made up of local citizens, is seen here in about 1886. The band played in parades, sometimes took part in musicals, and entertained at many civic events. Redlands also had an orchestra, started in 1888, which, unlike the band, occasionally allowed women to perform. (Photographer: Frank C. Fryett.)


The Redlands Band, shown here in 1897, was organized in July, 1887, by R.J.Waters (top row, 3rd from left). Martin F. Pierce (top row, center) arrived in July of 1889 and was soon chosen leader, a position he held until 1898. At the Southern California Band Contest, in Redondo Beach, August 22, 1895, the band won first prize. "Redlands' band is probably the only band on earth that owns its own building", Scipio Craig wrote in his August 25, 1900 Citrograph.

Personnel: Top Row, Rt: George Butler, Jack Driver, John Walters, Frank Cook, Martin F. Pierce (leader), John Alder, Billy Fessenden, Lincoln Lansdon, Albert Hatch. Second Row: Fred Gernich, M. Melcher, Louis Hatch, C. H. Hobart, James Doyle, D. Melcher, George Isbell, Archie Huffman, L. Isbell. Seated in front row: James Hosking, William Cook, Ben Butler, James Reeder. redband2

The Redlands Orchestra, pictured here in 1897, was started in May, 1888 under the leadership of H. L. Sloan, a musician of note. Originally there were 16 members. In the next decade it developed into "the largest and best orchestra in Southern California outside of Los Angeles". In the photo top left is Martin F. Pierce, with clarinet. Seated third from left is Will Fowler, later major.

"No one is eligible for membership in either the Band or the Orchestra who is not a lover of music for its own sake, willing to play without pecuniary reward, and to attend rehearsals rain or shine"


Riverside Daily Press - August 10, 1914: REDLANDS MUNICIPAL BAND WELL RECEIVED.

First Concert by Bands of Riverside and Redlands a Great Success. Local Musicians Return Compliment Tomorrow Evening

Fairmont Park has held many a large company at the Friday and Sunday concerts by the Riverside Military band, but it is doubtful if it ever accommodated such throngs as yesterday. The program given by the Redlands Municipal band and the local band attracted an audience of unusual proportions, and some 700 of that audience were Redlands citizens who came over to applaud their splendid organization.
Riverside band boys will go tomorrow evening to Redlands to return the compliment of their visitors yesterday, and will take part in the regular Tuesday evening concert in the neighboring city. The local boys hope that they will be accompanied by a good representation of Riverside autoist, and a cordial invitation is extended to all to attend the concert. The Redlands people showed their approval of their band by turning out in a large number to hear them play in another town, and Riverside will certainly do the same by her own unsurpassed organization.
The first half of the program given yesterday afternoon was under the direction of the visiting leader, Athobert Ball, and the trombone number by one of the visiting musicians, G. Whitney, was given splended applause. Mr. Whitney's number was Nevin's "Canzonetta". In the second half of the program under the baton of John H. Moore of Riverside, a second number by one of the visiting men, F. W. Wilding jr., cornetist, of Upland, received the enthusiastic applause which it merited.
The entire program was composed of tuneful melodies which were well rendered by the combined organizations and the pleasure afforded the hundreds of people which filled the park was evidenced by the continued applause which greeted each number.
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