There were many patriotic songs on this special Independence Day holiday concert. Marches included Karl L. King’s Vanguard of Democracy, along with E. E. Bagley’s National Emblem, and John Philip Sousa’s immortal The Stars and Stripes Forever.
A highlight the evening was Thomas Knox’s arrangement of patriotic themes, entitled American Pageant. This collection of songs, commissioned for Symphonic Band in 1973, was first performed for the inauguration of President Richard Nixon, and has been used at every subsequent inaugural since then. Other patriotic selections included Leroy Anderson’s The Phantom Regiment, and Irving Berlin’s God Bless America.
Popular sounds included Scott Joplin’s ragtime song, The Entertainer, and a medley of songs made popular by one of America’s finest entertainers, Louis Armstrong. This medley, entitled Satchmo, includes When The Saints Go Marching In and Hello, Dolly! among other songs. Throughout his life, Armstrong believed he was born on the 4th of July.
Many special guest performers were featured during this evening's concert. First, a Dixieland Combo took center stage to perform a medley of Big Band songs done in a Dixieland style. Combo members performing Big Band Dixie include Ardella Hein, Fort Dodge, clarinet; Alan Bridge, Storm Lake, tenor saxophone; Jim Perkins, Boone, trumpet; and Dan Cassady, Fort Dodge, trombone.
Nancy Olson from Twin Lakes was the guest conductor of the band. Nancy is a long-time member of the band, joining when she was in high school at Pomeroy. She went on to earn her B.M.E. degree at Morningside College in Sioux City, and her M.A. degree in Clarinet performance at the University of Iowa. Nancy has taught instrumental music in the West Monona, Aurelia, and Storm Lake St. Mary’s school districts, and now serves as the historian for the King Band and plays in the Clarinet section. She directed J. J. Richard’s famous march, Emblem Of Unity.
Roger Netz from Manson led the audience in The Ultimate Patriotic Sing-along. This medley of well-known songs includes such standards as You’re A Grand Old Flag and God Bless The U.S.A. Roger is the vocal music instructor for the Manson Northwest Webster Schools, and is a member of the band’s Saxophone section. He earned his B.A. degree from Buena Vista University.
Closing the band’s concert was a performance of our national anthem, The Star-spangled Banner.
July 16This concert highlighted several different styles of band music. Classical band works on the evening’s concert included Morning, Noon, and Night In Vienna Overture by the Austrian composer, Franz von Suppe. This overture is considered to be the most famous of Suppe’s many concert overtures.Well known popular selections were also heard, and included highlights from the successful Broadway musical, Sophisticated Ladies. This musical used the compositions of American jazz composer, Duke Ellington, and included well-known Big Band favorites, Caravan, Solitude, Mood Indigo, It Don’t Mean A Thing, Sophisticated Lady, and Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me.
Karl L. King’s music is always a popular treat, and there were plenty on this concert to enjoy, including Robinson’s Grand Entrée March and Enchanted Night Waltzes. Other marches on the evening program included Washington Greys, a popular march of the Civil War era, by C. S. Grafulla; and The Messenger March by C. L. Barnhouse, one of his best-loved compositions.
Andrew Glover, nationally prominent composer and arranger, was the special guest conductor for the evening. Mr. Glover is a native of Missouri, and was educated in the public schools of St. Louis. He received his Bachelor of Music Education degree from Central Methodist College. While still a college student, Mr. Glover performed for three seasons with the Detroit Concert Band, conducted by Leonard B. Smith. In addition, Andrew served as librarian and executive assistant to Dr. Smith. Mr. Glover began writing and arranging music for bands while a student in high school, and has nearly 200 publications in print. He taught instrumental music in St. Louis area public and private schools for nine years. In October, 1998, he joined the C. L. Barnhouse Company of Oskaloosa, IA, as staff composer, arranger, and editor. He is now the Chief Operating Officer of that music publishing business as well as Walking Frog Records.
Mr. Glover directed the King Band in three selections, Sells-Floto Triumphal March by K. L. King, A Hunting Scene by Bucalossi, and the circus galop, They’re Off, by Fred Jewell.
The concert closed with The Star-spangled Banner.
This evening’s classical offering was the Finale from the New World Symphony, by the Bohemian composer Antonin Dvorak. This composition, written in 1893 while Dvorak was director of the National Conservatory in New York, was based on Negro spirituals and plantation songs. This fourth movement of the symphony brings together all the themes used throughout the entire work, including some that were composed while Dvorak spent summers in Spillville, Iowa. Another classical offering was from the German composer, Richard Wagner, as the band performed his Pilgrim Chorus from the opera, Tannhauser.
Lighter selections on the program included On The Esplanade, depicting the blending of sounds one might hear during a summer evening attending a Boston Pops Concert. There was also a medley of many familiar theme songs from memorable movies, entitled Hooray for Hollywood.
The music of the band’s namesake, Karl L. King, was heard in the marches Step On It!, which was dedicated to long-time King band member and manager Walter Englebart, along with Mighty Minnesota and Royal Hippodrome Galop. Other marches on the program included The Southerner, by Russell Alexander, and John Philip Sousa’s march, King Cotton.
Thomas Strait, from Moorhead, Minnesota, was the guest soloist for the evening. Mr. Strait is currently the Chair of the Music Department at Minnesota State University Moorhead, where he teaches trumpet and directs Jazz Ensemble I. He holds a Doctor of Arts degree in trumpet performance from the University of Northern Colorado, in addition to degrees from the University of Texas at Austin and Henderson State University. Before coming to MSUM, he spent several years teaching at the college level in Montana and served in the U.S. Air Force, performing with the USAF Academy Falconaires. As a free-lance trumpeter, he has performed with many artists, including Bob Hope, Robert Goulet, Nancy Wilson, and Doc Severinsen. He also maintains an active schedule as a clinician and adjudicator. Tom Strait is a Yamaha performing artist.
Mr. Strait performed two selections with the King Band. First, Rondo For Trumpet, by Claude T. Smith. This piece was originally written for Doc Severinsen, who was a regular on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson. The second piece Mr. Strait performed is entitled Ode For Trumpet, by Alfred Reed. This composition was dedicated to Don Jacoby, another famous trumpet player.