(Cue the fanfare, please.)
2020 won’t be like anything you’ve enjoyed with NRB in the past 50 Years!
Band photos. We’ve got millions, and we want to share.
Understand what you’re getting yourself into in 2020.
The New Reformation Band (NRB) jazz repertoire encompasses Dixieland, ragtime, blues, big band, and swing… the hot music that lifts spirits. It delivers beautiful harmonics reinforced by a beat that sets toes tapping. It’s true. It’s been unscientifically proven. (We watch the crowds at each live gig. As we play, toes are bouncing all over the place.)
NRB was formed in 1970 during a cold Michigan winter. Seven musicians gathered in the sanctuary of the First Congregational Church in Saginaw in a shocking yet highly successful effort to enhance the service with jazz. All of the musicians had played “jazz” before, just not in church, and not with each other. With the exception of the Brothers Oppermann — on piano and banjo — most were shaking hands for the first time.
This was not to be a daunting task. The tunes selected were from the hymnal, and so recognizable even those slackers who rarely attended a service knew them.
The chief instigator was the church’s youth minister, Pastor Gary Miller. During his Saturday night vigils in this industrial community, the “Rev” would visit the bars… especially those with music… with the admirable goal of offering counsel and support to “lost souls.” But he always had his trumpet under his arm in case there was a chance to sit in.
50 years later the NRB is still having a great time performing, and people keep calling to schedule gigs. 2020 is our 50th year. This site is becoming the home of our history.