We hope you have noticed our new logo on the site. Our original logo, which we have used for over 10 years, came from the photo on the cover of our first CD, with the ever so original title, True North Brass. Everyone in the group loved the image in the photo of a lone wolf howling into the winter night’s sky. The sky is filled with the Aurora Borealis (aka the Northern Lights) shimmering over a grove of stately pines. We turned this photo into a graphic and used it to represent what we felt was the essence of True North Brass: Canadian, northern, spiritually connected to nature and to “making music” with integrity and soul.

Where does this “essence” come from? Well, it developed out of the membership and their individual personalities and passions. We were all Canadians and even though we came from very different locales, we connected in our approach to life; lots of humour, lots of hard work, a commitment to the group rather than individual gain and a love of just “playing” together. It really did feel like we were kids in a sandbox having a great time playing and making up stuff. The “stuff” was Scott and Al coming in with amazing charts and all of us working on making those charts really work stylistically, ensemble perfection and colours (ideas came out to use harmonica, drums, loon whistles, etc., as well as flugal, natural horn, and mutes of all sorts). The players in the original True North Brass included Stuart Laughton who not only played soloistic and lavish trumpet, but he was also a true expert on birds. When he was little, he begged his mother to take him to Pt. Pellee and camp out to see the bird migration that happens each year. When we toured, Stuart always had his eyes to the sky informing us of each bird in the area. He knew their mating patterns, number of eggs, eating habits, colourings, life span, migration routes, etc… It is not a surprise he ended up running “The Forest Festival”. Another original member, Al Kay, owns a great cottage on a northern Ontario lake and is highly knowledgeable about the outdoors of that area. He is known to go out with his trombone and play Auld Lang Sang on New Year’s Eve across the frozen lake. Ray Tizzard grew up in a small town outside of Toronto and camped every year with his family as they crossed the country east and west. I grew up in northern Manitoba in a small town. We spent weekends in the Waterhen ( between Lake Manitoba and Lake Winnipegosis) sleeping in a converted caboose. The cabin had no running water, no phone, no radio, no toilet, etc. You don’t know quiet until you stay there. We have one “city boy” in Scott Irvine , who has not left Toronto for more than a few days at a time. But, we need his city smarts to balance out the country bumpkins – after all Canada has cities too and we all know that Toronto is the centre of the Universe (as opposed to NYC which is the center of the Universe).

So the wolf logo fit us for well over a decade. Recently we decided to change the approach of True North Brass, Inc. to be more of a collection of brass players. Our five year plan is to have enough True North Brass-ers to have the full brass section of a concert band. We’d love to put a band together once a year in Toronto and play a concert. We all grew up loving the band repertoire and want to play it again. Out of this collective, we can form all types of brass ensembles and help endorse other players with concerts, PR, recording, arranging/composing, connections into the music field, grant applications and friendship.

The new logo reflects this new phase in our company. The process took a long time as we searched for images and ideas that reflected where we had gotten to as a group. Membership had changed, new players brought new strengths, not everyone was a Canadian by birth. There is no boy –scout quiz to get into True North Brass so we have more city slickers now…sounds a lot like the evolution of the entire country! After some ado, we went to www.thelogocompany.com. They got the highest rating on the internet. They looked at our profile at the time and then had five designers create a concept. We had to choose ONE and then work through unlimited changes until we were happy. I thought this was a great value. To be honest, the original five concepts were very difficult to choose from. They were all unique, creative and within the bounds of what we were aiming at. The final version you see on the site now took quite a few revisions and we had to live with each revision. Each design had to sink into the group psyche and allow us to try on the longevity that would represent us. Plus, it was very hard to let go of the old image of the wolf and the great Northern outdoors.

We’d love to hear what you think of the new logo. Our goal was to have it represent a collection of players, be truly Canadian in look and colour, let everyone know we are a brass group and have a flow that would look great anywhere: stationary, business cards, website, advertising and merchandise. That is a big order to fill and The Logo Company made it happen with multiple discussions on the TNB side.

Let us know your impressions. This is a creative act. We came up with an idea, we went down a path to create it, we ended up with a result and then we compared the result with our original idea. That is where we found SATISFACTION in what we created. I’d say we have 100% satisfaction, so we can celebrate! We hope you like our new logo and will celebrate with us. Enjoy and celebrate your own creations, little and big!