For Those Who Fell:
A War Memorial for Concert Band
Composed 1990; severely re-written Dec. 28 2014--Feb. 8, 2015
Duration: about 7 minutes 20 seconds
cover photo: Nomandy cemetary, photographed by Murray Isbister
Solemn: Moderato: Tempo I
1989, I had the pleasure of visiting with an old friend I met at NTSU in the
'70s, Fred Robinson (no relation), when the Air Force Band he composed and
arranged for played at Brevard, NC. As a result of this visit, when I returned
home to Cleveland NC, I wrote a series of pieces for his musicians. One of
these was a work for jazz band, For Those
Who Fell, a short (four minutes) war memorial. However, shortly after the
band got the piece, the Gulf War started, and the Pentagon sent out the word
that there should be no reminders that people die in war. Hoo-rah. None of my
music was used.
the 2000’s, I tried finding a jazz band that would play the piece, but there
were many barriers; it is not in a jazz idiom, there was no improvisation or any percussion, and it is
far removed from whatever it might be programmed with in any normal jazz concert.
In addition, most professional jazz bands expected me to pay for performance.
Thus the little piece sat unused in my files with all the others.
2014 I figured that FTWF would work
well for concert band, especially expanded in length. This is especially true
as I have discarded my only other effort to write for concert band. I inserted
about three minutes of new music into the center, and completely
re-orchestrated and expanded the rest to suit the new instrumentation.