Country Band March
Charles Ives (transcribed by James B. Sinclair)
Eb Soprano Clarinet
Bb Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
Eb Alto Clarinet
Bb Bass Clarinet
Eb Contrabass Clarinet
Alto Saxophone I-II
Cornet (in Bb) I-II-III
Trumpet (in Bb) I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Percussion I-II-III, including
- Bass Drum
- Snare Drum
An impossible mute change occurs in the 2nd trumpet part at m. 18. The player may reasonably omit the prior 2-3 measures in order to take the mute, because the notes are covered in tenor sax and 3rd cornet, respectively.
Country Band March was composed around 1903, four years after Ives' graduation from Yale and five years prior to his lucrative insurance partnership with Julian Myrick. Ives had just resigned as organist at Central Presbyterian Church, New York, thus ending thirteen and one-half years as organist of various churches. He was, according to Henry Cowell, "exasperated...by the routine harmony for hymns." During this period Ives finished his "Second Symphony" (1902), composed three organ pieces that were later incorporated into his Third Symphony (1904), composed the Overture and March: "1776" and various songs and chamber pieces. Apparently, the Country Band March received no performances and only a pencil score-sketch is in evidence today. Later, Ives seemed very interested in this music, since he incorporated nearly all of it, in one form or another, into the "Hawthorne" movement of Sonata No. 2 (Concord)," The Celestial Railroad,’’ the Fourth Symphony (second movement) and especially "Putnam's Camp" from Three Places in New England."
From the "out of tune" introduction to the pandemonium which reigns at the close, the Country Band March is a marvelous parody of the realities of performance by a country band. While the main march theme is probably Ives' own, the march features an impressive list of quotations that includes "Arkansas Traveler,” "Battle Cry of Freedom,” "British Grenadiers,” "The Girl I Left Behind Me,” "London Bridge,” "Marching Through Georgia,” "Massa's in de Cold, Cold Ground,” "My Old Kentucky Home,” "Violets,” "Yankee Doodle,” "May Day Waltz" and "Semper Fidelis." There is rarely anything straight-forward about the use of this material; the tunes are subjected to Ives's famous techniques of "poly-everything." Of particular interest is Ives's use of "ragtime" elements to enliven this already spirited march.
Program Note from Printed Score
None discovered thus far.
- New York: Grade VI
To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project
- UCLA Wind Ensemble (Dr. Lawrence R. Sutherland, Jr., conductor) - 7 November 2012
Additional Works for Winds by this Composer
This composer primarily wrote orchestral music. Other transcriptions of his works include:
- Alcotts, The (arr. Thurston)
- Decoration Day (tr. Elkus)
- Variations on "America" (orch. Schuman, tr. Rhoads)
- Variations on "Jerusalem the Golden" (tr. Brion)