Bootleg Beatles’ player battles cancer

Bootleg Beatles
Bootleg Beatles

By Gig Scene Editor Grsaham Chalmers

She once played tuba for Knaresborough Silver Band and appeared as a youngster with the Tewit Youth band but tonight, Friday, March 28 will see her on stage at the Royal Hall at in a familiar role as a trumpet player with The Bootleg Beatles.

It’s an amazing musical homecoming for Annette Brown who went to Granby High School as a youngster.

It’s made even more amazing by the fact that she’s playing on despite having cancer.

Annette, who studied trumpet at the Royal College of Music in London, said: “I’ve played with The Bootleg for 24 years and I’m very grateful to them for their support. Once this tour is complete, I will resume treatment.”

Annette first started on the cornet aged six. Her father played tuba with Knaresborough Silver Band and would take her to rehearsals riding on the back of his Honda 50cc motorbike.

Later, at Granby High School, Annette played with not only school ensembles but also Tewit Youth Band, Sam Smiths Brewery Band and eventually, Harrogate Band.

She’s had a varied careersince then which has included working in TV, theatre (including the West End), on the QE2 and at concert venues home and abroad.

Her experience ranges from playing at Wormwood Scrubs to performing for the Royal Family.

Alongside her lengthy stint with The Bootleg Beatles, Annette has performed with artists such as Seal, Jimmy Osmond, Marti Pellow, Duncan James and, her dear friend, the late Bernie Nolan.

Annette was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009 which meant taking a year off from playing the trumpet to undergo major surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Last year, she received the devastating news that her cancer had returned.

During her first stint of chemotherapy, Annette painted her first ever picture; the only painting she has ever done.

It will be available, in poster form, at The Bootleg Beatles gig at the Royal Hall tomorrow. Friday, March 28; with all proceeds going to Macmillan Cancer Research.

For tickets, call the box office on 01423 502116 or visit