Ken Brader’s Holiday Brass CD release performance

Outlets at Sands Bethlehem

Friday 12/22 7:15pm & 8:15pm

As you probably may know from reading some of my other blogs, Ken Brader has been a long time influence and role model to me in my life. I was a student of his for many years as I was growing up and still to this day, seek his guidance on trumpet playing. One thing that bonds together all of Ken’s students is the Holiday Brass. Ken Brader’s Holiday Brass has been in existence for over forty years. Ken leads this brass collective of 35-45 musicians in concert during the Christmas season. It is always a joy knowing that this event is coming up and the enjoyment that comes with it. For the season is not complete without a performance by the Holiday Brass! The sound of a 40+ piece ensemble in a shopping mall is hard to put into words. The few that do come to mind are big, bold and beautiful, yet elegant and very magical.

One of the joys of playing in the group is to get a chance to see those you rarely get to speak with during the year. As a kid, this was great because Ken taught so many students it gave me a chance to meet new people from all over the region. Now, as an adult, I see so many faces from those years and now we catch up. But, instead of talking about school, classes and sports, we now talk about things like health, family and who is sick… Wow, I am getting old…LOL. However, it is still nice to see Ken’s students, those in middle and high school, who join us for the first time and the excitement they have for this experience.

Since this ensemble has been playing, there has never been a professional quality audio or video recorded. It was never thought of or suggested to make something like this…until last year. After we played in December, the idea was born to make a CD. We do have videos of our performances, but, they are taken in a shopping mall. So, you have other issues to deal with while taking video in a mall. Plus, they are not of a high quality.

After months of planning in early 2017, we finally achieved the goal of getting the group together to record a CD. The CD was recorded on July 15th at the Bethel Memorial Baptist Church in Easton, PA. ( by Sonlight Productions ( Owner and engineer D Freeman, Rachel Ewaniuk, and Kris Ewaniuk donated their time and services to help make this dream a reality. We were also given financial support to make the CD’s from the Christmas City Veterinary Hospital (, Lisa Cawley, Proprietor. It was a great day!! You may have seen one of my previous blogs on this event.

Well, after a lot of mastering, fine tuning and over dubbing, our CD is finally ready and we are excited about it. The CD, titled REJOICE! is a compilation of all of our holiday music. With this blog, I am very happy to announce that our CD release event of REJOICE! will be at our holiday performance which is set for Friday, December 22, 2017 at 7:15pm and 8:15pm at the Outlets at the Sands Bethlehem ( These performances are free and open to the public. We usually play in front of the large tree on the bottom level close to the elevator. The Outlets always treat us so great that we felt this would be the right time and location to hold our release party.

CD CoverThis CD is a long time coming and I am very proud of everyone who gave of their time and efforts to make this CD a success. Only the Lord knows how long this group will continue. But, it is great to know that we finally have a great recording to last a lifetime.

If you can make it, it would be great to see you on Friday, 12/22. Come out to help celebrate a CD 40 years in the making.

I have a few photos, a behind the scenes video and some clips from the recording linked with this blog. Check them out.

Behind the scenes video clip…

No Comments

Post a Comment