Tuesday, June 2, 2009

A book for Summer reading

For those days when you have time on your hands, but it's a rainy day
and you can't go outside, and you have already practiced on your
instrument, there's a book you might want to buy and read. The book
is "Note Grouping" by James Morgan Thurmond. This classic is now
available in paperback. I lost my hardcopy book a number of years ago
and just ordered the new paperback version from Amazon.com. Thurmond
started his career as a French Horn player in the Philadelphia
Orchestra, was the main person in establishing the Armed Forces School
of Music at Little Creek (starting it as the Navy school of music),
and finished up as a college professor. Along the way, about 30 years
ago, he conducted regional bands in this area and judged my high
school band on several occasions (and gave us a superior rating, by
the way.) The book explains WHY you accent the pickup note. It will
greatly help you in playing with expression. Happy reading!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Concert Season 2009 is here!

Thirty-Four years in the park for me, 121 years for the band, and 154
years of continuous operation for the band. Wow!

Frank Sampson and Ray Hoaster continue as assistant directors, with
each taking a full concert and Frank conducting about a third of most
of the concerts.

This year's concert lineup features premiere performances of several
pieces written for the band by members and band friends. Ray Hoaster
wrote a nice arrangement of the Rodgers and Hart tune "Mountain
Greenery" to showcase the clarinet talents of Al Winters, our oldest
member, who at age 83 is still going strong. Bob Moody did
transcriptions of two pieces for the band. First there's the
Victorian church anthem "The Lord Is My Strength" by the british Caleb
Simper, and then there's one that is given as a Carl Broman tribute,
Healy Willan's Organ Chorale Prelude on the hymntune "Now God Be
Praised In Heaven Above." On the joint concert with the 29th Army
Band we will do the premiere performance of "Afghan Andy" by Randolph
Cabell, honoring Army Major Andrew Ashley upon his return from

Concerts are held regardless of weather in the Stonewall Brigade
Bandstand in Staunton's Gypsy Hill Park. Directions and concert
programs can be found on the band's web site www.stonewallbrigadeband.com
under the "concert series" tab.

Come and enjoy an old-fashioned band concert under the stars every
Monday evening at 8 in June, July, and August.