"They kept it up to the very end. Only the engulfing oceanhad power to drown them into silence. The band was playing 'Nearer, My God, toThee.' I could hear it distinctly. The end was very close." -CHARLOTTE COLLYER,TITANIC SURVIVORThe movies, the documentaries, the museum exhibits. Theyoften tell the same story about the "unsinkable" Titanic, her wealthy passengers, the families torn apart, and theunthinkable end. But never before has "that glorious band"-the group of eightmusicians who played on as the Titanicslipped deeper and deeper into the Atlantic Ocean-been explored in such depth. Steve Turner's extensive research reveals a fascinating story includingdishonest agents, a clairvoyant, social climbers, and a fraudulent violinmaker. Read what brought the band members together and how their music servedas the haunting soundtrack for one of modern history's most tragic maritimedisasters.BOOK REVIEWSThe Band that Played On by Steve Turner is, surprisingly, the first book since the great ship went down to examine the lives of the eight musicians who were employed by the Titanic. What these men did - standing calmly on deck playing throughout the disaster - achieved global recognition. But their individual stories, until now, have been largely unknown. What Turner has uncovered is a narrow but unique slice of history - one more chapter of compelling Titanic lore.Turner, a music journalist, pursued living relatives of the band members and squeezed all that he could out of "inherited photographs, documents, and anecdotes" enabling him to sketch brief but poignant portraits of eight young (or at least youngish) men, all born in an optimistic era and all members of the rising middle class. To their parents, their girlfriends, and surely to themselves as well, the future must have seemed bright right up until the early morning hours of April 15, 1912There is much that we do not know about the final hours of these men. Why did they make the decision to play on the deck that night? What was in their hearts and minds? Even the Titanic survivors who witnessed their final performance quibbled over some details. Did the band march or did they kneel? Was their last number "Autumn" or was it "Nearer, My God, to Thee"? Did they stop playing during the final moments and pack their instruments away or were they still playing as the ship went down? All agreed, however, that all eight band members behaved with remarkable calm and courage. Within hours of the ship's sinking, their story was circulating and they had already become heroesFor Turner, however, the undisputed hero of the book is Wallace Hartley, a fine musician with religious conviction and a powerful sense of duty who seems most likely to have been the force behind those final hours of heroism. In the last pages of the book, Turner reveals a surprising Hartley discovery - a turn of events which makes a fine ending for his worthy book, even as it leaves us hopeful that the Titanic may yet have a few mysteries she is willing to give up.-Marjorie Kehe, Book Editor, Christian Science Monitor. . . For those the least bit interested in the Titanic tale, this is another intriguing chapter in the legend. -Craig Wilson, USA TodayThis detailed and sympathetic portrait of the bandsmen willbe appreciated by Titanic enthusiasts and casual readers alike. Steve Turner'snew book admirably fills a gap in Titanic literature. There are few good bookson the subject of Titanic and, until now, none on the band itself. Steve'simpressive depth of research has allowed him to vividly flesh out the storiesof each of the band members and he has set these narratives in a fascinatingsocial, political, cultural and religious context. I only wish Steve's book hadbeen around when I was researching Wallace Hartley for my role in JamesCameron's movie!-Jonathan Evans-Jones, who played band leader Wallace Hartleyin the film Titanic.Filling at last a historical gap, this isthedefinitive account of those neglected and abused heroic bandsmen. Steve Turnerhas done a fine and exhaustive job of research on those splendid souls who didexactly what musicians, as service providers, do best: soothe and give succor. I wish I'd had this book at hand when I put together my recording of the WhiteStar Orchestra's music: I could have made the thing a lot more accurate! A worthy,thrilling and moving book.-Ian Whitcomb, music advisor for the film Titanic, and producer of the GrammyAward winning CD, "Titanic--Music As Played On The Fateful Voyage"(Rhino Records, 1998.)

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