Appalachian Overture

From Wind Repertory Project
James Barnes

James Barnes

General Info

Year: 1983
Duration: c. 7:00
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Wingert-Jones Publications
Cost: Score and Parts - $70.00   |   Score Only - $10.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II-III
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
E-flat Alto Clarinet (optional)
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Contra-Alto Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III-IV
Horn in F I-II-III
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III-IV-V, including

  • Bass Drum
  • Bells
  • Crash Cymbal
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone (if available)

Program Notes

In 1983, the late composer/conductor Claude T. Smith invited me to write a work to help celebrate the 25th anniversary of Wingert and Jones Music Co. of Kansas City, the well-known publisher of Smith’s early works and one of the great retail sheet music Stores in Mid-America. I initially turned down the commission, because I could not fit another work into my writing schedule for 1984, but, after explaining my problem to Smith, we both agreed to take one of the works that I was writing for a high school honor band in North Carolina as my contribution to the anniversary celebration. The result was Appalachian Overture, which was premiered by the Alamance County Honor Band in the spring of 1984. The work was published that summer by Wingert and Jones, and it remains my only work in that catalogue.

The overture, in ABA form, is based on original material, but the middle melody is reminiscent of the sort of folk melody prevalent in the American southeast, where the Appalachian Mountains are located. It is a work of great excitement and energy, with the slower middle section allowing the listener a moment of repose before the driving da capo and the dramatic coda, in which the first and second themes are superimposed in counterpoint, finishes in a flash of brilliant sound and instrumental color.

- Program Note by composer


State Ratings

  • Arkansas: IV
  • Kansas: IV
  • Oklahoma: III-A
  • South Carolina: IV
  • Tennessee: IV. Complete
  • Virginia: IV


To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Bemidji (Minn.) Area Community Band (Ryan Webber, conductor) - 2 July 2023
  • East Tennessee State University (Johnson City) Concert Band (Reilly Fox, conductor) - 21 October 2021
  • Florida State University (Tallahassee) University Symphonic Band (David Plack, conductor) - 11 October 2021
  • University of Kansas (Lawrence) Wind Ensemble (Jacqueline Dawson, conductor) – 13 September 2020
  • University of Oklahoma (Norman) Concert Band (Brian A. Britt, conductor) – 25 April 2016
  • Banda Unió Musical de Gata de Gorgos (Spain) (Joan Valentí Giménez Ortiz, conductor) – 2013

Works for Winds by This Composer

Adaptable Music

All Wind Works


  • Barnes, J. (1983). Appalachian Overture: For Band [score]. Wingert-Jones Music: Kansas City, Mo.