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Bill Locklear

Arranged by Bill Locklear

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General Info

Year: 1998
Duration: c. 4:45
Difficulty: III (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Protest song
Publisher: Arrangers Publishing Co.
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $70.00   |   Score Only (print) - $10.00


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

(percussion detail desired)


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

To mark the 1998 closing of historic William James Middle School in Statesboro, Georgia, band director Mrs. Kathy Frey commissioned a work to commemorate the occasion and honoring the late Dr. James, a prominent black educator in Statesboro and Bulloch County. After consulting with Dr. James' family to find out the name of his favorite hymn, the answer came back: We Shall Overcome.

- Program Note by composer

Commissioned by the 1997-98 William James Middle School Band, Kathy Frey, director, to commemorate the closing of William James Middle School, 1955-98.

- Program Note from score

We Shall Overcome is a gospel song which became a protest song and a key anthem of the civil rights movement. The song is most commonly attributed as being lyrically descended from I'll Overcome Some Day. a hymn by Charles Albert Tindley that was first published in 1900.

The modern version of the song was first said to have been sung by tobacco workers led by Lucille Simmons during a 1945 cigar workers strike in Charleston, South Carolina. The song became associated with the civil rights movement from 1959, when Guy Carawan stepped in with his and Pete Seeger's version as song leader at Highlander, which was then focused on nonviolent civil rights activism. It quickly became the movement's unofficial anthem. Seeger and other famous folksingers in the early 1960s, such as Joan Baez, sang the song at rallies, folk festivals, and concerts in the North and helped make it widely known. Since its rise to prominence, the song, and songs based on it, have been used in a variety of protests worldwide.

- Program Note from Wikipedia


State Ratings

  • Mississippi: V-A
  • North Carolina: III
  • South Carolina: III


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Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Bill Locklear website Accessed 18 June 2020
  • Locklear, B. (1998). Overcome : Commissioned by the 1997-1998 William James Middle School Band ... [score]. Arrangers' Publishing Co.: Nashville, Tenn.
  • We Shall Overcome, Wikipedia Accessed 18 June 2020