The Band of the Coldstream Guards is one of the oldest and best known bands in the British Army, having been officially formed on 16 May 1785 under the command of Major C F Eley, reflecting the fact that the Coldstream Guards regiment is the oldest of the guards regiments. Although the band is not technicaly the oldest in the Army, it has the longest standing tradition of music, as from its earliest days the officers of the Coldstream Guards hired eight musicians to provide music for the regiment during the changing of the guard. This is an event which still occurs today, every day at eleven thirty in the summer outside Buckingham Palace. The Band of the Coldstream Guards is often used to provide the music in present day.
The Coldstream Guards Band was one of the very first British army bands to make a recording before World War I.
On 18 June 1944 over one hundred twenty people were killed in the chapel at Wellington Barracks when a German flying bomb hit the chapel. The director of the band was included in those killed, prompting a new man, Captain Douglas Arthur Pope, to be appointed.
In 1960, the band started a new tradition, to tour from coast to coast of the United States of America, each ten years. This tradition still takes place.
The band is currently based at Wellington Barracks in St. James's London along with all of the other guards bands at present, although the Coldstream Guards Band moved in as soon as the barracks was completed, making it the first official home of the band.
The band also performs at other non-military events in the same way as other military bands such as the Grenadier Guards Band or another civilian professional organisations.