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About the Music

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A SEA CHANTEY VOYAGE  is a medley of several sea chanties [The Boston Come-All-Ye, The Water is Wide, Sailing Sailing, Rio Grand, Clear the Track, Sailor’s Hornpipe, Lowlands, Shenandoah, A-Roving] painting some pictures: The ship’s crew preparing to sail with well-wishers waving them God-speed; the wide expanse of the ocean; the crew hauling lines to raise the sails, a slack time for a lively hornpipe; the swells of the sea and a brief storm; longing to be home; and returning safely.  Port Townsend is a sea-faring town, and the perfect inspiration for my first orchestral composition.  It is dedicated to Dewey Ehling, the Music Director and Conductor of the Port Townsend Community Orchestra who so warmly welcomed me to their midst.  The piece was premiered Dec. 1, 2001 by the orchestra and my band transcription of it was premiered August 29, 2004 by the Port Townsend Summer Band.

 

PORT TOWNSEND MARCH is dedicated to the Port Townsend Summer Band which performs at a beautiful old gazebo in Chetzemoka Park overlooking Admiralty Inlet by our town.  The theme of “Sailing, Sailing” fits perfectly with the scene of myriad sailboats which dot our bay so much of the year.  The first strain of the march is an obbligato to this melody.  The march had its premier on June 24, 2001 at the park, the composer conducting.

 

NAVY BUGLER’S BAND CALL MARCH was to be the first of a set of marches based upon naval or military bugle calls or themes.  It is dedicated to all Navy bands and buglers.  It begins with the U.S. Navy bugle call for Band, which is the melodic theme of the first strain; the second strain is based upon its rhythm, and the legato trio before the break strain is based on the melody.  The break strain uses a brief quote from the song What Shall We Do with a Drunken Sailor, which is interrupted by the bugler playing Division Call, followed by the sounding of Gig (referring to the Captain’s gig — the small craft used to take the ship’s captain to shore and return).  The last strain pictures the captain returning to his ship, coming aboard with appropriate pomp and ceremony.  This march had its first public performance on July 28, 2002, at Chetzemoka Park.

 

FORT WORDEN CENTENNIAL MARCH was written for the centennial celebration of this former U.S. Army installation, now a Washington State Park.  It was performed at the opening ceremonies of the Centennial on March 10, 2002, played by “The Fort Worden Centennial Band” comprised of members from both Port Townsend Summer Band and the Sequim City Band under the baton of the latter’s conductor, Chuck Swisher.  It was then performed by the Port Townsend Community Orchestra at its May 4 concert, later by the Summer Band at its June 30th park concert and again on July 4th at Fort Worden for the town’s Independence Day celebration before the fireworks.  The inclusion of the U.S. Army bugle call, You’re In the Army Now, represents the fort’s commissioning into federal service; quotes from Yankee Doodle represent the spirit of America, and the rhythmically augmented version of America represents our beloved country.

 

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