If you’re tired of lackluster arrangements, or titles that sound cool, but don’t live up to their musical billing, check out these fantastic, authentic-sounding arrangements for advancing bands. There is plenty of variety, and your band and audience are sure to enjoy them. If you teach young bands, our article Authentic Pieces Your Young Band Will Love, features excellent new works for grades 1-2.5.
Chisholm Trail, Carl Strommen – Grade 3.5
Chisholm Trail has a truly American folk song quality, containing hints of music from the mountains, evoking the rugged terrain and pioneering spirit that were so important to the early growth of this great nation.
Come Fly with Me, arr. Paul Murtha – Grade 3
Written for Frank Sinatra, and the title track of his 1958 album, this wonderful big band-style arrangement remains masterfully true to the original recording. Perfect for pop, summer, or community band concerts!
Earhart: Sounds of Courage, Robert W. Smith – Grade 3.5
Eternally sparking our curiosity and taste for adventure, the legend & mystery of Amelia Earhart is brilliantly captured in this soaring, musical journey of multicultural styles and a timeless spirit of discovery.
Everest: The Forbidden Journey, Rob Romeyn – Grade 3.5
Expeditions to find joy at the top of the world are an intoxicating mixture of danger, excitement, awe and solitude, all of which are finely woven into this emotional musical adventure with a driving pulse and a soaring spirit.
Hava Nagila, arr. David Bobrowitz – Grade 3
The excitement builds with the tempo in this wonderfully authentic arrangement of the traditional Hebrew song. Opening with a solo group consisting of flute, saxophone, euphonium, and bells, the unfolding musical tide gains momentum with each section, right through the boisterous, celebratory ending.
Legends of Jazz, arr. Stephen Bulla – Grade 4
Learning opportunities just seem to go hand-in-hand with this outstanding medley of milestones in American jazz, each a classic in its own style: Boplicity (Miles Davis), ‘Round Midnight (Thelonious Monk) and In a Mellow Tone (Duke Ellington).
Spyscape, Timothy Loest – Grade 3
Sneaky, sinister, superbly scored, and loaded for undercover action – the perfect montage of menacing musical cliches chase and intercept, building to a rousing free-for-all climax that parents and students will love.
The Stormchasers, Robert Sheldon – Grade 4
Traditional “screamers” are mostly historical icons, but this lightning-charged circus march for the 21st century carries on the bloodline magnificently, from its thundering energy, to its sweet lyrical lines, to the accelerando finale that remains crisp & controlled to the last breathless note.
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