Jazz is about being in the moment. ~ Herbie Hancock
Every year my band has turnover. People move, get new, harder jobs, get divorced, … you name it there are so many good reasons for leaving a good band. Some let you know at the end of a season. Other, through bad luck or poor planning let you know days before the first practice of the new season.
Then comes the ‘not so fun’ part of managing a band. How to find a suitable replacement who is also a good team fit personality wise. And if the outgoing band member is a key soloist, that really is hard to fill. In some cases that case would require a change in the music program for the year, even if you find a decent soloist to fill the loss.
Then there is the interesting phenomenon of not being able to find some one till the last moment and then suddenly you have two qualified candidates. That happened twice this year in my band with the pianist and the director. I guess it’s better to have too many candidates. But sussing out which one is better for the band can be a real challenge.
Auditioning them is relatively easy. Make sure you throw something challenging at them to see how they do. I hafta say that after having stellar trombones for a number of years, suddenly it’s become difficult to find any candidates to fill those shoes.