Here is some information about a few of our musicians:
Rebecca Bartlett, Cello — past member
Christopher Clunas, Clarinet and Keyboard — past member
Christopher directed the Sackville Citizens Band from 2007 to 2011.
Janet Crawford, Vocalist
Janet Crawford is a singer-songwriter with a repertoire that includes original tunes, some old-time country and especially standard jazz classics. Besides her performance with small ensembles and the Sackville Citizens Band, she is also the principal vocalist with the Elastic Big Band from Nova Scotia.
David Howe, Baritone Saxophone
Dr. David Howe played the flute in high school and medical school, then let it lapse for some 25 years until he moved to Parrsboro and joined the Citizens’ Band there. Since he gave up his full time family practice office he has taken up the baritone saxophone and now has time to play with the Sackville Citizens Band as well.
Paul Jensen, Musical Director and Clarinet
When Paul was seven, his grandfather, a classical violinist from Denmark, gave him a tiny E flat clarinet for his birthday. He showed him where to put his fingers, taught him how to blow, and said, “Show me what you can do the next time I visit.” Thus began a love-affair with this instrument that has lasted more than 56 years. By the time he was eleven, he was sitting as a member in an all-adult citizen’s band.
Paul studied during the 60’s at both Ottawa U and Carleton U. Afterwards, he taught band programs in New Brunswick, Alberta, and Nova Scotia. He directed citizen bands in Dalhousie and Sackville as well as the army band of the 8th Canadian Hussars.
Five years ago, after returning from teaching in a northern first nation community, he returned to Sackville. He decided not to pick up the director’s baton, but rather to resume his clarinet playing at a more serious level. He is now lead clarinet with both the Codiac Concert Band and the Sackville Citizens Band.
Ted MacDonald, Tuba — past member
Jack McGee, Tenor Saxophone
Jack wanted to play the saxophone as a teenager after seeing a five-piece band perform, hearing their sound, and seeing how much they seemed to enjoy playing music together. Not able to afford to buy a sax at the time, he found a music teacher who also rented instruments, and thus began his learning with an ancient alto sax.
Despite the early squeaks and squawks, he continued to learn, found a better instrument, and eventually joined a friend’s band, playing at local functions.
He switched to tenor sax, playing off and on for several years until settling in Nova Scotia in 1973. He then formed a trio, which eventually expanded into a four- or five-piece group. His band was active until the early 2000s, at which point he joined the Sackville Citizens Band as lead tenor. Jack also plays with the Parrsboro Citizens Band.
David Towns, Trombone
David began playing trombone back in the dark ages of junior high, studying at the Ontario Conservatory and playing with two high school bands, a stage band, a jazz ensemble, and three municipal bands. At university, unable to locate a brass ensemble, he joined a Medieval music group and took up the recorder in its various sizes.
A thirty year career in the navy left the trombone virtually untouched in a closet except for a couple of brief periods playing with the Base Borden volunteer band as ‘the’ low brass and then assisting instructing low brass at the Junior High in Lower Sackville, NS. Along with Gord Morgan, David was instrumental in the inception of the Sackville Citizen’s Band in Lower Sackville, NS, and then promptly moved to Parrsboro where, a year later he joined the Parrsboro Citizens’ Band, and the following year, this Sackville Citizens Band, where he has now spent the past several years trying to recover the lip and skills of a 20 year old, with a greater or lesser degree of success.
Anne Varner, Flute
Anne moved from Montreal to attend Mount Allison University and has enjoyed living in Sackville ever since. She has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Flute Performance from Concordia University (Quebec) and a Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Education from Mount Allison University. Anne teaches flute in her private studio and enjoys playing and performing with the many talented musicians in the local community.
Elbert White, Trumpet
Elbert has played the trumpet for many years, first with the Amherst Concert Band, then with the 8th Canadian Hussars Militia Band, and now with the Sackville Citizens Band.