10/15/2008

James Swearingen: Master of Concert Literature

If you're an ardent fan of school band music, then you will definitely enjoy works by James Swearingen, an American composer. He specializes in Concert Literature, a small music genre which usually comprises 5-6 min long pieces played for high school band concerts. Among the pieces I've heard is Centuria & Majestia, amazing music, I've initially never really heard school band music before but these 2 songs really rocked! 
Adapted from his website here:
Currently, Mr. Swearingen is one of the resident composers at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. Prior to that, he had taught instrumental music for 18 yrs in the public schools of central Ohio. He spent 14 yrs as Director of Instrumental Music at Grove City High School where his marching, concert & jazz bands all are known for their high standards of performing excellence.

Mr. Swearingen is also active as a guest conductor, adjudicator & educational clinician. He has been to various parts of the US, as well as Japan, Australia, Europe, Canada & the Republic of China. 

His music is wide & very well accepted by various audiences worldwide. With over 450 published works, he has written band compositions & arrangements that reflect a variety of musical forms & styles. Many of his pieces, including 81 commissioned works, have been chosen for contest & festival lists. He is a recipient of several ASCAP awards for published compositions & in 1992, was selected as an Accomplished Graduate of the Fine & Performing Arts from Bowling Green State University.

Exaltation, one of his recordings, including Centuria
A very accomplished musician, composer & educator, Mr. Swearingen's music sets the standards for school band music everywhere. I hope to be able to listen to all of his music, perhaps play them too! Definitely his music is made to be remembered.

3 comments:

ash said...

Yea... He's a cool composer... I like most of his songs... Centuria (unforgettable tune in my head), Majestia (nice flute solo n soli parts me n my flute members had been practicing), Exaltation (totally cool "rising" part after the slow part), Blue Ridge Saga (nice tune though)... I wish I would listen more to his songs =)

rowan said...

Yeah we should kacau USB to purchase his recordings hehe :D

adhi said...

my school played it....
we played majestia...exaltation....
but from these 2 song....majestia is the hardest compare to exaltation...but i love both...hope 1 day can play it back...hehehehe