1. Faulkner – 1:35
2. Ritual: Football and The Lord - 4:25
3. Lamentation – 3:45
4. Mint Julep – 5:50
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II
Horn in F
(percussion detail desired)
None discovered thus far.
Home. I think about it constantly. I haven’t spent more than a week in the South in more than seven years and yet, I know it will always be home. Sometimes it’s a phone call from mom or a card from my sister. Sometimes it’s the faint smell of a dogwood or an Atlanta Braves box score in the paper. No, I haven’t really been there in years but I think about it daily.
In Southern Comforts I am sharing some of the things that were important to me growing up in Atlanta or have become important in trying to remember home. Each movement is my representation of a memory or item from my childhood in the south.
Movement I. Faulkner
Often when I am feeling particularly nostalgic I like to pull out Sound and the Fury or As I Lay Dying. Faulkner’s descriptions of Mississippi and dysfunctional southern families always make me want to get on the first plane back home.
Movement II. Ritual: Football and The Lord
Sunday ritual: Breakfast, Sunday School, Service, Lunch, Football. (In the off-season: Golf) From cradle to age 15, I can literally count on a single hand the number of times that I missed any part of this routine. And I tackled each part of the routine with equal seriousness. I still remember who Methuselah begot and every Sunday when the prelude begins, I can smell the carpet at the now defunct First Christian Church in Collage Park, GA. (And I can also tell you who started at every position for the 1980 Falcons.)
Movement III. Lamentation
Lamentation is a traditional form that began in early baroque opera and is characterized by a mourning text and the so called “descending tetra–chord” which is a falling chromatic line that is usually treated as an ostinato. Egypt Puckett died May 5, and we mourned her with equal parts emotion and, as is tradition, great restraint.
Movement IV. Mint Julep
I must admit this is a late affectation that I have developed. Before I left the South I had no idea what a mint julep was and didn’t give a hoot about some horse race over in Kentucky. But as time passes it seems that I look for reasons to feel nostalgic, so every year around May 1, I can be found breaking out the mint leaves and the whiskey.
Southern Comforts was completed in October 2008 for a consortium of collegiate wind ensembles.
- Program Note by composer
- Audio: Reference recording. The Casella Sinfonietta (Kevin Geraldi, conductor; Marjorie Bagley, violin)
None discovered thus far.
To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project
- Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.) Chamber Ensemble (Jeffrey de Seriere, conductor) - 23 November 2021
- Texas Tech University (Lubbock) Symphonic Wind Ensemble (Sarah McKoin, conductor) - 9 February 2017 (2017 TMEA Conference, San Antonio)
- Baylor University (Waco, Tx.) Wind Ensemble (J. Eric Wilson, conductor; Eka Gogichashvili, violin) – 28 March 2009 (CBDNA 2009 National Conference, Austin, Tx.) *Premiere Performance*
Works for Winds by This Composer
- Asimov's Aviary (2012)
- Avelynn's Lullaby (2011)
- Blink! (2006)
- Concerto for Viola and Wind Ensemble
- Emory's Barcarolle (2015)
- Fanfare for Chris (2019)
- Fanfares for Friends (2019)
- 15th Night of the Moon (2014)
- I wake in the dark and remember (2022)
- it perched for Vespers nine (2008)
- Knells for Bonnie (2016)
- A Lullaby for John (2023)
- My Eyes Are Full of Shadow (2016)
- Piece for Solo Flute and Chamber Winds (2015)
- Ping, Pang, Pong
- a proper goodbye (2020)
- The Shadow of Sirius (2009)
- Ship of Theseus (2015)
- Short Stories (2012)
- Southern Comforts (2008)
- that secret from the river (2016)
- Joel Puckett website Accessed 10 January 2017
- Perusal score
- Puckett, J. (2008). Southern Comforts [score]. Bill Holab Music: [Brooklyn, N.Y.]
- "SOUTHERN COMFORTS Violin Concerto by Joel Puckett (USA)." WASBE. Web. (Featured as WASBE’s Composition of the Week, 27 April 2020). Accessed 16 January 2023