Friday, June 12, 2015

FRIDAY, JUNE 12, 2015

"The '60s was one of the first times the power of music
  was used by a generation to bind them together."

Neil Young

"Serious messages are often communicated to
  a population through the music they listen to."
картинки | анимационные картинки | картинки на телефон
Sleigh Ride by Currier and Ives
"The Road Winter"--shows Nathaniel Currier and his wife.
It was a Christmas gift to Currier from his employees--

Nathaniel, ever the capitalist, had copies made and sold them to the public.
John Williams, Conductor
Boston Pops Orchestra
Brian Setzer, Performer
"Sleigh Ride" is a popular light orchestral
piece, composed by Leroy Anderson
and according to the composer's
widow Eleanor Anderson,

"Leroy didn't set out to write a Christmas
piece when he wrote 'Sleigh Ride.'  His
intentions were to convey the entire winter
season through the imagery of a sleigh ride,
much in the way that Mozart did with
his piece of the same name."
(from German Dance No. 3)
Leopold Stokowski, Conductor
Composer's intentions aside, this winter
composition quickly became associated
with the holiday. Eleanor Anderson
remembers hearing Sleigh Ride in New
York City department stores right after
the first recording was released in 1949.
Norman Rockwell
The music incorporates the sounds of
sleigh bells and horse whips throughout
the piece, ending with the horse whinny
(played by a trumpet) followed by
one last crack of the whip
(played by a slap stick).
In a 1951 radio interview,
Leroy Anderson
explained the background
of the finale of the work:
"The story about the horse whinny goes
back to my student days in Boston. I knew
a trumpet player there who was very skillful
in producing unorthodox, as well as orthodox,
sounds on his instrument. The most striking
of these was a horse whinny, which he made
by pressing the three trumpet valves halfway
down and then giving a sudden blast through
he mouthpiece while shaking the trumpet rapidly.
I was especially impressed by this because I was
studying orchestration at the time, and this sort
of thing wasn’t in the textbooks. I then forgot all
about it until years later, when I was scoring
the final measures of Sleigh Ride."
By Celesta Letchworth,
eHow Contributor
1. Press all three valves halfway down with your right hand.
Hold the trumpet firmly around the valve casing with your left hand.
Insert the pinky of your right hand into the pinky ring/hook for stability.

2. Play a high note, preferably the G, which
sits on top of the treble clef or higher.

3. Play a slowly descending glissando
while shaking the trumpet slightly away from and back toward your lips.
The shaking is a rapid forward/backward motion, not side to side.
Your "horse" will sound better with a faster and stronger shake.

Doug Kreuger: A Christmas Sleigh Ride
The composer had the original idea for
the piece during a heat wave in July, 1946
but finished the work in February, 1948 and
was first recorded in 1946 by Arthur Fiedler
(Left to right) Leroy Anderson and Arthur Fiedler
and the Boston Pops Orchestra with
lyrics added later, in 1950, by
Mitchell Parish.
According to author Steve Metcalf
in the book Leroy Anderson:
A Bio-Bibliography
[Praeger 2004],
"Sleigh Ride"... has been performed
and recorded by a wider array of
musical artists than any other piece
in the history of Western music."
the American Society of Composers, 
Authors and Publishers named
Sleigh Ride the most popular piece of
Christmas music in the USA in 2009,
2010, 2011 and again in 2012 tracked by
airplay monitoring service, Media guide,
from over 2,500 radio stations tracked
nationwide all this is in spite of the fact
that the word "Christmas" is never
mentioned in the lyrics.
The slapstick (often called a whip) is a
simple non-pitched auxiliary percussion
instrument used solely for rhythmic
reinforcement and effect that consists of
two flat pieces of wood boards, joined
by a hinge at one end, which, when struck
together rapidly produce a sharp crack, slap
or whipping sound that can be performed loud
or soft. The size of the slapstick (and strength
and composition of material to some degree)
provides the quality of the sound. A larger
instrument can produce a louder and
slightly lower pitched crack.
There are two types of whips. The first has two
planks of wood connected together by a hinge, with
a handle on each. The percussionist holds the
instrument by the handles and hits the two pieces
of wood together, creating a loud whip noise.
The other type also has two planks of
wood, one longer than the other, with one handle,
connected with a spring hinge so it can be played
with just one hand, though it cannot produce
sounds as loud as a whip requiring both hands.
This second type of whip is technically a
separate instrument called a slapstick.

The slapstick has been used extensively to add extra
comic effect for sight gags in theatre, vaudeville, and
in cartoons. It is seen occasionally in classical music,
such as the 6th Symphony of Gustav Mahler and is
used as the sound of whips in a number of light
classical and more contemporary compositions
like Anderson's "Sleigh Ride."
mounted on a piece of wood or on a harness.
They can either be played as a percussion
instrument with rhythm or as a shaking
instrument with a continuous sound.
Performed by Ella Fitzgerald

Lyrics Added in 1950

Just hear those sleigh bells jingling, ring ting tingling, too,
Come on, it's lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you,
Outside the snow is falling and friends are calling "Yoo Hoo,"
Come on, it's lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you.

Giddy-yap, giddy-yap,giddy-yap, let's go,
Let's look at the show,
We're riding in a wonderland of snow.
Giddy-yap, giddy-yap, giddy-yap, it's grand,
Just holding your hand,
We're gliding along with a song of a wintry fairyland,

Our cheeks are nice and rosy, and comfy cozy are we,
We're snuggled up together like two birds of a feather would be.
Let's take that road before us and sing a chorus or two,
Come on, it's lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you.
There's a birthday party at the home of Farmer Gray,
It'll be the perfect ending of a perfect day,

We'll be singing the songs we love to sing without a single stop,
At the fireplace while we watch the chestnuts pop.

There's a happy feeling nothing in the world can buy,
When they pass around the coffee and the pumpkin pie,
It'll nearly be like a picture print by Currier and Ives,
These wonderful things are the things we remember all thru our lives!

Jane Wooster Scott: Holiday Sleigh Ride


Body Percussion Moves

The introducton starts the piece off with a bit of a lilt in
the rhythm due to its 7/8 meter (1-2-3-4-5-6-7 rhythm:
three long pulses then one short pulse). This sequence
happens four times (four measures' worth) before the
melody commences throwing the listener immediately
into a winter wonderland, with the jingling sleigh bells
and bouncy trumpet call, followed by flute snowflakes.

With the music sounding like a horse trotting through the
snow, the main melody is happy and light with a smooth,
longer line in the mid-range instruments which may be
depicting the road the sleigh is traveling over. After the
first statement of the theme (0:20) a reply is heard
in the trombones and bass voices. 

The next section adds some temple blocks for the "horse
hoof" effect along with a nice little countermelody section.
Following, there is a asforzando-piano chord at 0:42 (a
dynamic that is suddenly accented then immediately gets
softer) in the horns, which grows louder (crescendos)
as the xylophone gives us a transition back
into the main theme.

This time, the theme is played by the trumpets as the
high woodwinds and strings recreate the sound of snow
flurries by playing a short trills.  A syncopated transition
is heard next with the ensemble getting softer.

After a buildup in volume from the rest of the ensemble,
there is one beat where no one else plays; that is where
the whip crack sound is added. The music is brought
back down to piano (soft) in order to crescendo again
as a lead in for another whip crack. With the distraction
of the whip and the liveliness of the melody, it’s easy to
miss some neat chord changes that are happening during
this bit after the second whip crack (1:13).

The next transition harkens back to the beginning of the
piece, but adds some echoes and uses shorter segments
of that trumpet theme (1:33) before restating the "flute
snowflake" theme (1:40) which Anderson modifies by
jazzing the whole thing up. Again the trumpets perform
their jazzed up theme followed by the trombones' more
bombastic reply (1:47). Then, everyone gets to join in.

After the excitement of the jazz section, the ensemble
settles back down for the rest of the ride. We hear familiar
themes and accompaniments as the pieces winds down.
Anderson doesn’t let us get completely comfortable, 
though, as he interjects a brief call-and-answer between
the instruments (2:30). This begins the lead-up to the
most famous part of the piece: the horse whinny, courtesy
of a solo trumpet player. We then hear a quick salute to
the clip-clop of the horse hooves and one more whip crack
before the entire orchestra announces the end.

Arlene Wright-Correl: Sleigh Ride
Currier and Ives