Shenandoah (ar Bass)

From Wind Repertory Project
Randol Alan Bass

Traditional American folk song, arranged by Randol Alan Bass)

General Info

Year: 2009
Duration: c. 4:50
Difficulty: IV (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Alfred Publishing
Cost: Score and Parts - $68.00   |   Score Only - $9.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon 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
Bass Trombone
Percussion, including:

  • Bells
  • Crotales
  • Marimba
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Triangle (large and small)
  • Vibraphone


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Oh Shenandoah (also called simply Shenandoah or Across the Wide Missouri) is a traditional American folk song of uncertain origin, dating at least to the early 19th century. Shenandoah was first printed as part of William L. Alden’s article Sailor Songs, in the July 1882 issue of Harper’s New Monthly Magazine.

The song had become popular as a sea chanty with sailors by the 1880s. Ike Skelton, a U.S. congressman from Missouri, noted in 2005 that local artist George Caleb Bingham immortalized the jolly flatboatmen who plied the Missouri River in the early 19th century; these same flatboatmen were known for their chanties, including the lovely Oh Shenandoah. This boatmen’s song found its way down the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers to the American clipper ships, and thus around the world.

In the heart of the Shenandoah Valley, Washington & Lee University chorus singers and bands play this song in homage to their alma mater. The Virginia Military Institute Regimental Band and Glee Club frequently perform this song, as it is widely considered their school’s theme song. In this interpretation, Shenandoah refers to the home of the Virginia Military Institute and expresses the longing that a cadet experiences once he is reminded of the valley’s beauty by his travels across the “wide Missouri.” Shenandoah is the official school song of Shenandoah University in Winchester, Virginia, located at the north end of the valley. The song features prominently in the soundtrack of the 1965 movie Shenandoah, starring Jimmy Stewart, and is also heard as a part of a medley in the 1962 Cinerama film How the West Was Won.

- Program Note by The Contra Costa Wind Symphony, adapted from Wikipedia


State Ratings

  • Louisiana: IV
  • Texas: IV. Complete


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Works for Winds by This Composer