Marshall Municipal Band: MMB to perform Saturday for Santa Fe Trail Days

Friday, September 7, 2012
Band Director Kevin Lines helps musicians get in tune prior to the band's last regular season concert Thursday, Aug. 9 The band will perform once more this year, serving as the finale for Santa Fe Trail Days Saturday , Sept. 8, at 7 p.m. (Eric Crump/Democrat-News)

The Marshall Municipal Band will perform a special concert Saturday evening, Sept. 8, at Indian Foothills Park as the conclusion to Santa Fe Trail Days.

The concert will begin at 7 p.m. in the Lyon Bowl parking lot located at the south entrance of the park.

"Since the concert is so close to the anniversary of 9/11, we have chosen a special program of music to mark the event," Director Kevin Lines said. "We have tried to select music that highlights difficult times in our country's history that have tested the human spirit and reflect the great American resolve."

The concert will begin with the John Philip Sousa march "The Invincible Eagle."

While many of Sousa's marches are heavy and bombastic in their effort to convey the impression of the stir and strife of warfare, "The Invincible Eagle" shows the military spirit at its lightest and brightest while on the parade field, according to Lines.

The concert then turns to the early days of the nation with "Spirit of 76." This Clare Grundman medley is based on songs of the time of George Washington and the American Revolution. It includes "Washington's March at Trenton," "Yankee Doodle," "Norah, Dear Norah," "Girls and Boys" and "Chester."

The band's next work comes from the 2002 Paramount motion picture "We Were Soldiers," which depicts the early involvement of the United States in the Vietnam War. This work was performed at the end of the memorial service for President Ronald Reagan at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.

The band's next work recognizes the fighting of the World War I pilots with the K.L. King "Aces of the Air." It will be followed by "Duty, Honor, Country," which is a work for a narrator and band that was adapted from an address by General Douglass MacArthur to the U. S. Military Academy.

MacArthur was one of the great military leaders during World War II and officially accepted Japan's surrender on Sept. 2, 1945, Lines noted.

The band's next work, "National Emblem," is arguably the second most popular march ever written, according to Lines.

Often attributed to John Philip Sousa, the writer of the most popular march "Stars and Stripes Forever," this work is actually by E.E. Bagley.

"Sousa himself commented that Bagley's march was one of the three most effective street marches ever written," Lines said.

The march ingeniously incorporates the opening 12 notes of the our national anthem into his work, Lines added.

Next will be one of the band's traditions for patriotic programs, a performance of "The Armed Forces Salute."

"As we remember the difficult times in our country's history, the band would like to take the opportunity to recognize the brave sacrifice of the men and women who have served our country through their military service," Lines said. "This work features the official song of each branch of the military, and the band will invite veterans to stand during the playing of their official song."

The band's next selection, "Flight of Valor" by James Swearingen, is based on the well-known hymn "It is Well With My Soul" and is respectfully dedicated to the heroes of United Flight 93 who tragically lost their lives when the plane crashed in a Pennsylvania field on Sept. 11, 2001.

As is traditional at all concerts by the Marshall Municipal Band, the concert will end with a sacred work, a patriotic work and the band's signature march, "Uncle Sammy."

The sacred work is John Philip Sousa's "Songs of Grace and Songs of Glory," which uses the hymn "Nearer My God to Thee." This piece was played at the funeral of President Garfield.

The band's patriotic work is the stirring arrangement of "America, The Beautiful" arranged by Carmen Dragon. Dragon's arrangements are often performed but none more than his quintessential "America, The Beautiful."

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: