The Second Hand Marching Band has a limited edition single available, if you're quick. You can get their wintry "Grit and Determination" EP from HERE until 1 January 2010. Their excellent 4-track EP is available for a princely £3 (plus £1 p&p). You can buy it as a download or as a numbered handmade CD.
Here's how the band summed up 2009:
We brought out our first EP in January this year and sold it oot, only 150 copies mind you. We played about 20 gigs including the square in a university, outside a big edinburgh venue, a botanic garden and a blustery festival - in 5 different towns in Ecosse. We've been listened to (according to the Internet) more than 45,000 times. We've done a BBC session. We met lots of cool people. It's been a good year.
Let me tell you a bit about my favourite bits:
1. Beerjacket times in King tut's and also Oran Mor. BJ is a local legend who I love and it was awesome to play with him. we have twenty members straining to do what he can do with one wee tambourine. It's impressive. He gets better every year and had lots of great sound out this year on a new album. Go go go mr Kelly.
2. Releasing our EP on Chaffinch Records. Dave from Chaffinch is a legend also and we picked up lots of really great reviews in magazines, blogs and newspapers. Thank you if you were one of the writers of one of them. It was so very unexpected for people to like our home recorded CD and most welcome. It spurred us on so blame them if you want rid of us pals. To have our own CD out was great and we hope to do more with the wonderous Chaffinch later on. Woo!
3. BBC Scotland session. We went on Vic's program and it was amazing. The sound chaps were so great and helped us out when basically we sat there like 19 morons not knowing what to do. The end result was very pretty. You can get it on last.fm. It was a great great experience so it was.
4. Sold out gig with Zoey Van Goey. There are a fair few ZVG fans in our ranks but this was a belter of a gig and we had a great time at it - seeing a packed stereo was exciting and I think we played quite well due to all the excitement.
5. Rest of band's fun times as wickerman and so on - I wasn't there ( I was in America... ) but it was awesome and there's lots of cool videos and so on of their time there. hurrah!
6. All Tomorrow's Parties weird appearance. We appeared walking through the audience playing a song by Battles called Atlas before the ATP film started. What was one of the most ridiculous, horrible days was also one of the funniest. We were very badly behaved and spent many hours sneaking about being band, running across roads and shouting at people. It was great.
7. Blog heroes. We met and found so many new blogs this year and had so many great reviews in them and it's great to hear honest and fresh opinions. In Scotland the emerging new writers from things like the Glasgow Podcart and many of the music blogs is making a difference to wee bands like us who don't spend money on PR or adverts or anything - people manage to find us through things like this so thank you very much.
8. All the great bands we played with, including Benni Hemm Hemm, Meursault, 17th Century, Zoey Van Goey, Beerjacket, Esperi, Share, Sparrow and the Workshop, Japanese War Effort, Pineapple chunks, wounded knee, jesus H foxx, phenomenal handclap band, burnt island, apples of energy and many others.
And before I go here is a collection of strange and lovely memories from such times:
Running about St. Andrews with confused onlookers following on.
The moment we pretended to be a jazz band because 'Tara' thought we were and was going to pay us.
Goddamn you crazy posh St. Andrew's girls!
Playing in the sea at St. Andrews by throwing rocks etc
Getting to the quiet break in 'Hurricane, Thunderstorm' on BBC radio and seeing all the funny faces of bandmates
Liam's theatrical take on ONE ARMED SCISSOR live on Radio Scotland
The Stoo's ability to drown all of the rest of everything on the radio (before it was live but) Dave and mears swapping instruments without anyone noticing
Starting recordings with Benni Hemm Hemm, the Icelandic genius.
Wandering around playing the accordion in the dark in Dundee in a botanic gardens.
Making up winter songs
So that's our year. It's not over though. We are selling a wintery EP until the 1st of January. After that it's gone gone gone.
We have two more gigs left then none (maybe one) before summer next year. Time to practice.
Next year's plans: Joint EP with Benni Hemm Hemm, two EPs of our own. Less gigs more practice (you'll be happy to hear)
Thanks for all those who came to see us etc and see you soon!"