Music has played a major role throughout our nation’s history, and allows us to paint a portrait of certain time periods. The Moore County Concert Band will perform arrangements connected to important events from America’s rich history on Sunday, March 12, at 2 p.m, in the Bradshaw Performing Arts Center at Sandhills Community College.
What better way to start an American history concert than with the “Star Spangled Banner.” Written toward the end of the War of 1812, Frances Scott Key’s song didn’t officially become the national anthem until 1931.
On April 19, 1775, the Massachusetts Militia clashed with British soldiers. This day became known as “the shot heard around the world,” beginning the American Revolutionary War. “American Revolutionary War Medley” is an arrangement of six popular Colonial tunes, including “My Country ‘Tis of Thee,” “The British Grenadiers” and “Yankee Doodle.” This piece was arranged by Jari Villaneuva, who has been a guest soloist with the group a few times in the past.
Moving along to the early 1850s, when minstrel shows were popular, Stephen C. Foster was known as “The Father of American Music.” He wrote over 200 American folk songs. “Fantastic Foster” is a tribute to three of his most popular songs, “Camptown Races,” “My Old Kentucky Home” and “Oh! Susanna.”
One of the most important historical events in our nation is America’s involvement in a Civil War from 1861-1865. “Civil War Reflections” uses popular songs from the era such as “When Johnny Comes Marching Home,” “Battle Hymn of the Republic” and “The Battle Cry of Freedom” to give us a picture of that time.
For many years rivers were the social and commerical lifelines of America. From the 1860s through the 1890s, rivers like the Mississippi and the Ohio were a means of transporting goods and people from place to place. “American River Songs” is an arrangement of the popular melodies “Down the River,” “Shenandoah” and “The Glendy Burk.”
George M. Cohan was an American entertainer. His career began as a child performing in a vaudeville group with his parents and sister called “The Four Cohans.” Jari Villanueva arranged a piece titled “Four Cohan Songs,” featuring a medley of his songs including “Give My Regards to Broadway,” “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” “Over There” and “You’re a Grand Old Flag.” His work as a Broadway composer and performer has him labeled as “The Man Who Created Broadway.”
The 1930s brought the swing era. Clarinetist Benny Goodman led one of the most popular swing bands of the era, leading him to be known as “The King of Swing.” The band will perform excerpts from some of his most famous tunes, including “Sing, Sing, Sing,” “Moonglow” and “Let’s Dance.”
With the premiere of “American Bandstand” in 1952, Dick Clark became a household name. The show remained on the air until 1989. Artists such as Chubby Checker, The Beach Boys and The Jackson 5 were featured on the show, just to name a few. “Rock Roll and Remember” is a tribute to Clark and the many artists that performed on the show.
Sept. 11, 2001, is a date that many will never forget and most remember where they were in that moment. “In Honor of the Fallen” is a powerful piece that was written to honor those who lost their lives during the tragedy of 9/11.
The finale to the concert will be a medley of “God Bless America” and “America the Beautiful.” This piece serves as a great reminder that we are blessed to live in America.
This will be the group’s first concert under the direction of Doug Yopp. He taught band in public and private schools for 38 years, is a Florida Bandmasters Association Adjudicator and has been a guest conductor for many events.
The Moore County Concert Band is a volunteer, nonprofit organization supported by generous donations from patrons. For information and news of upcoming performances and locations, visit moorecountyband.org and follow on Facebook.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Comments that violate any of the rules above are subject to removal by staff.