This piece was written for The Canadian Staff Band's tour of Australia and New Zealand in the summer of 2001.
The first part is written for a quinetet of two cornets, horn, trombone and tuba, and is a mix of slow blues and gospel. This section segues into the main 'straight ahead' part of the piece which is for the full band and is an evocation of the big-band styling of the great 'Count' Basie. I use and old tune by Gosta Linstrom which goes to the words O Happy Day The Fixed My Choice, and the old Army benediction Praise God, I'm Saved. Those who know their Salvation Army band repertoire will detect an affectionate, if 'tongue in cheek', reference to The Scarlet Jersey by the doyen of Salvation Army composers, Ray Steadman-Allen. I publicly crave his absolution now!
The piece presents oppertunities for some creative performance options. For instance, the quintet could begin alone 'front of house' and the rest of the band could be in position by letter A. There are plenty of places for sectional and soloist 'stands'. I intended this piece to be enjoyable for the performers and audience - have fun with it!
Level of difficulty: Difficult