PLEASE NOTE: The Words & Music Piano book and the Words Only editions do not contain the secular Christmas songs or the ten extended pieces that are featured in the brass and Wind-band parts. Please see below for full list of included titles.
Simone Mantia (1873 - 1951) was born in Italy and moved with his family to USA in 1881. He developed an early interest in playing the euphonium and from 1898 to 1904 was the euphonium soloist of the Sousa Band. This solo was written by him to demonstrate both the operatic qualities of his instrument as well as its outstanding technical possibilities. The solo is based on themes by the Italian composer Ermano Picchi (1811 - 1856), Mantia weaving his virtuosic variations around the thematic material provided by Picchi.
The Carnival Of Venice is arguably everyone's favourite solo, especially the version by Arban (1820 - 1869), author of the famous brass-playing method book still in regular use today. Young soloists aspire to master the necessary techniques, accomplished soloists know that it is a "sure fire" winner with audiences and listeners love to be dazzled by a virtuoso display of variations on a theme they easily recognise.
El Capitan was originally an operetta which was first produced in Boston in 1896. It was initially very popular and there are occasional revivals even to this day. The march of the same title uses themes from the opera and was also published in 1896. One notable feature - resulting from the use of themes from the operetta - is the abrupt transition from 6/8 to 2/4 half way through the march.
Arthur Pryor is remembered primarily for his 12 years as the amazing trombone soloist with The Sousa Band. However, he was also a prolific composer and conductor, forming his own band following his years with Sousa. He wrote many trombone solos designed to dazzle audiences with his virtuosity.
From The Shores Of The Mighty Pacific is an all-time favourite rondo-caprice cornet solo and was first published in 1912. A brass band arrangement was requested by Chris Lichtler, principal cornet of Brass Band of the Western Reserve, musical director Dr. Keith M. Wilkinson. Chris has performed it many times with BBWR and it was recorded by them on the CD, Without Reserve!.
In 1723 Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741) composed four concerti for violin and small orchestra entitled The Four Seasons. Winter is the fourth of these and the Largo is its central slow movement depicting a cosy scene by the fireside watching the falling rain.
This arrangement was prepared at the request of Brett Baker and has been recorded by him accompanied by Brass Band Of The Western Reserve, music director Dr Keith M Wilkinson, on the CD Slides Rule!
Leopold A Zimmerman (1866 - 1935) was trombone soloist in the Sousa Band, succeeding Arthur Pryor in that position, in the early part of the 20th century. This famous solo dates from that period. The brass band arrangement has been requested by Brett Baker who gave the first performance of this version in August, 2012.
This march, written in 1893, was originally destined for inclusion in an operetta but after the composer had witnessed a spectacle called "America" in Chicago, which had as its backdrop a huge painting of the Liberty Bell, it was given the name by which it has become famous. Further recognition has come in more recent years by the adoption of the march as the signature tune for the popular TV programme, Monty Python.
Herbert L Clarke (1867 - 1945) is regarded by many as one of the finest cornet players of all time, noted not only for his amazing technique but also for his warm, lyrical tone. He has left a multitude of cornet solos as well as collections of studies which are still very widely used. He was a member of The Sousa Band briefly in 1893 and then from 1898 to 1917 where he was not only the distinguished cornet soloist but also became assistant director.
The Maid Of The Mist dates from 1912 and is named after the famous sightseeing boat trips at Niagara Falls.
This famous aria is from the opera Gianni Schicchi. Lauretta, daughter of Gianni Schicchi, has fallen in love with Rinuccio but there are huge tensions between their two families which threaten to keep the young couple apart. The rather discordant music which opens portrays these tensions before giving way to Lauretta's tender appeal to her father to allow her to marry the man she loves.
March Slav was composed in 1876 for a charity concert to support the war in the Balkans. It was completed in the remarkably short time of 5 days and was encored twice at its first performance! The themes are based loosely on Serbian folk songs and there is also a reference to the Russian national anthem. The mood is funereal in style at the opening but this gives way to a very triumphant style by the end.
This traditional carol is arranged for band and chorus with optional bell choir. It was designed - and has been used effectively in this way - as a short encore to a Christmas concert. It is possible to invite the audience to join the final chorus (letter C).
The publisher permits the user to copy as many Choir and Bell Choir parts as necessary.
This march, one of Sousa's most popular compositions, was written in 1889 and was dedicated to the Knights Templar of Washington, D.C. Sousa had been knighted by that organization three years earlier. The origins of the name of the march are unclear and the march is noteworthy not only for Sousa's usual creative skills but also for the use, in two sections of the march, of military-style percussion and, in the last section, of featured fanfares.
The origins of this melody are unknown but, set to the poem by Robert Burns, this has become one of the most popular Scottish songs.
This arrangement was prepared at the request of Brett Baker for one of his many visits to perform as a soloist with Brass Band of the Western Reserve and its musical director Keith M Wilkinson. It has been recorded by Brett with BBWR on the CD Slides Rule!