Jan 17, 2013 Russ Tarby Uncategorized
Syracuse trumpeter Jeff Stockham – who performed at the Liverpool is The Place summer concert series last August in Johnson Park as a member of the Bear Cat Jass Band – now appears in the Academy Award-nominated movie “Lincoln” directed by Steven Spielberg. The widely acclaimed film is now showing in theaters across the country.
In the movie Stockham portrays a musician in a 12-piece U.S. Marine Band performing at a 1864 flagpole dedication ceremony at which President Abraham Lincoln (played by Oscar-winner Daniel Day-Lewis) delivers a short speech.
Several of Stockham’s friends and colleagues from the Federal City Brass Band and the Kentucky Baroque Trumpets completed the ensemble. The tune they perform in the flagpole scene is “We Are Coming, Father Abra’am.”
Twelve Oscar nods
Spielberg’s prop department rented four vintage instruments owned by Stockham, who is an avid collector of brass instruments as well as an extraordinary player. The “Lincoln” costume department rented 12 of his original musician swords worn by the band in the scene and a five-foot-tall mace used by the ensemble’s drum major.
In November, Stockham got to meet Spielberg again in Gettysburg, Pa., when the musician performed as a member of The President’s Own Band at the 149th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address.
Last week, the biopic about the 16th president picked up 12 Oscar nominations, including best director for Spielberg and best actor for Daniel Day-Lewis, whose Lincoln has a high-pitched voice and a distinctive mid-western twang.
Stockham’s involvement with 19th century music has launched a mini-movie career for him.
Last May he worked as a music consultant and wardrobe- and instrument-furnisher for the movie “Copperhead,” directed by Ron Maxwell whose credits include the heralded Civil War films “Gettysburg” and “Gods & Generals.” Maxwell’s “Copperhead” should be released sometime later this year.
In 2002, Stockham rented a handful of his vintage saxhorns and period cornets to the makers of the Academy Award-winning movie “Cold Mountain” about a Confederate soldier returning home toward the end of the Civil War.
In addition to his work in area big bands and jazz ensembles, Stockham leads an authentic Civil War brass band based in Syracuse, the Excelsior Cornet Band; excelsiorcornetband.com.
I’d like to bring the seven-piece Excelsior Cornet Band to Johnson Park this coming summer. Not only does the band perform authentic 19th century military music, Stockham also explains the role of Union and Confederate musicians during the War Between the States, as well as offering background about the tunes.
If you or a business you know would like to sponsor the Excelsior’s performance here this year, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the Liverpool Chamber of Commerce at 457-3895.
I stopped over to Gentile’s Pizzeria at at the corner of Long Branch Road and Route 370 recently for one of their stupendous steak sandwiches. The food was fine, the sandwich spiced by delicious pickled onions, but the squeaky door made for a rather rude welcome.
Another place with a squeaky door is the Liverpool Post Office on North Cypress Street. I know the U.S. Postal Service, like the rest of us, is facing serious budgetary constraints these days, but I would think they could afford a squirt or two of WD-40.
Sean “Josey” Wells, who lives in Liverpool on First Street, rang the bell for the Salvation Army during this recent Christmas season. Often stationed in Camillus, Josey was one of the Army’s top earners last month.