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Kirkpatrick's Muse

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Jay Bocook

Jay Bocook

General Info

Year: 2017
Duration: c. 5:05
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Hal Leonard
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $85.00; (digital) - $85.00   |   Score Only (print) - $10.00; (digital) - $10.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
String Bass
Percussion I-II-III-IV

  • Bass Drum
  • Bodhrán (or Hand or Frame Drum)
  • Caxixi (or Shaker)
  • Claves
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Crotales
  • Finger Cymbals
  • Glockenspiel
  • Low Tom
  • Marimba
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine (mounted)
  • Triangle
  • Vibraphone
  • Xylophone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The piece begins with a slow, Irish style flute solo, and moves seamlessly to a brisk allegro in the style of an Irish reel. The melodic material is a 16-bar theme loosely derived from the Appalachian fiddling tune Glory in the Meeting House, which originated in the Kentucky river basin, and has been attributed to fiddler Luther Strong.

In Irish dance music, the rhythmic tendencies of a reel are similar to the swing style of American jazz. However, rather than referring to these rhythms as “swing,” Celtic musicians typically say the music is performed “with a bounce.” Traditionally, the treble reel is danced in hard shoes so that the musicians can hear the bounce in each step. In Kirkpatrick’s Muse, a bodhrán, rather than dancers, creates and maintains the rhythmic drive throughout. The bodhrán, an Irish frame drum played with either a bare hand or a “tipper,” is traditionally played while seated, and is held vertically, with the left hand placed on the back of the goatskin head and used to manipulate pitch. If a bodhrán is not available for performance, the part can be performed on any frame drum or concert tom, so long as the player pays careful attention to the accent patterns written.

Kirkpatrick’s Muse highlights the simple charm of traditional Irish music in a new and interesting setting through many variances in harmony, texture, and color. The use of the bodhrán and other colorful percussive instruments emphasizes the dance-like nature of this lively piece for concert band.

- Program Note from score, by Hannah Carlson


State Ratings

  • Alabama: Class A
  • South Carolina: V


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