No one who encounters the Guarana Street Band’s infectious beats and sheer enthusiasm can fail to be impressed by the city’s most inclusive rhythm section.
Since friends Ron Bird and Daran Gill first realised their dream of forming a band with samba drums back in 2003, the Guarana Street Band has brought joy to the lives of members and their audiences alike. Each year the band performs at around 80 events across the North-east of Scotland and beyond, bringing their energy to open days, festivals, charity events and private parties and have become a firm favourite during the annual Torcher Parade each spring.
What makes the band really special is that it welcomes people of all ages and abilities to join in. It doesn’t matter if you are 4 or 104. Members range from retired librarians – no doubt keen to make a noise after years of silence – to children and adults with special needs.
Drumming helps people to let off steam, but it also has some unexpected benefits, improving co-ordination, patience, attention span and personal interactions.
If drumming doesn’t appeal, the band also has a lively wind instrument section, including trumpets, clarinets, recorders, flutes, trombones and saxaphones. Beginners are soon caught up in Guarana’s weekly practice sessions at the Ashgrove Children’s Centre, quickly making new friends and being able to take part in social events.
Members tend to come and go depending on their circumstances, with between 10 and 35 musicians taking part at any one time. Guarana’s work is supported by charitable donations, but it costs nothing to join and there are rehearsal sessions every Wednesday night, 5.30 to 7pm for junior band members and 7.30 to 9pm for the main band.
Tel: Ron Bird on 07813 924806 FB: GuaranaStreetBand