Navy Band Brass Quartet recording of “Stomping Sailors”

In many ways, the U.S. Navy Band saved and nurtured me during a vulnerable time of my life while trying to raise a family. However, while in the Navy Band, it was the Brass Quartet thatkept me sane. For that, I am truly grateful.

One of the many hidden benefits of playing the quartet was the lack of published arrangements for the brass quartet that was available to us. For that reason, we started arranging and composing a lot of our own repertoire, and we carved out a niche in the Navy Band as a small group that could do any kind of ceremony or concert. The member most responsible for building up our books was John Schroeder. Our normal book that we used on gigs was 90% comprised of his arrangements. I took my cue from John and learned to arrange also for the group, but my efforts were small by comparison. John also composed several original pieces for us. They possessed a unique style and were very clear in their form. Here is an example of one of his marvelous compositions for the brass quartet—“The Stomping Sailors March,” recorded in 2011. Note–there is a curious black and white segment of the film that seems like a mistake. However, the music continues correctly.

No tags for this post.

Navy Band Brass Quartet at Wreath-laying Ceremony

On September 11, 2011, President Barack Obama did a wreath-laying ceremony at the Pentagon, observing the tenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks. After laying the wreath, he went around the crowd, consoling and talking to the families of those who died at the Pentagon.

The U.S. Navy Band Brass Quartet supported this ceremony. We played contemplative music throughout. John Schroeder (leader of the quartet at this time), and I played trumpet. Phil Eberly was on euphonium and Tony Halloin played tuba. After the wreath was laid, we played “Amazing Grace,” “America,” Sibelius’ “Finlandia,” Mozart’s “Priest’s Chorus” from the Magic Flute, Holst’s hymn Thaxted from Jupiter, Hindemith’s Morgenmusik, Samuel Wesley’s hymn Aurelia, then a Bach chorale, and then finally a spiritual “Were you There?”

Here is the CSPAN video of the ceremony

No tags for this post.