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        The Challenge, Trumpet Solo by Eric Ball, OBE  This classic and classical sonata allegro movement was commissioned.  For a complete article on it, please  Click Here.

       Freedom’s Fleet - March Written for the Muskegon Catholic Central High School Band, Maestro Rob Gillette - Dedicated to Robert G. Morin, Sr. – U.S. Navy -  In a time when heroes seem to be out of vogue, it is a heartwarming honor to routinely be in the presence of a true heroe. I speak of our past working relationship with Muskegon’s Great Lakes Naval Memorial and Museum and the heroes there who served our country in World War II and subsequently. The founder and leader of this venerated institution for over twenty years, Robert G. Morin, Sr., himself a U.S. Navy veteran, has demonstrated patriotism, courage, resolution, patience, kindness and generosity of spirit in such breadth and depth as to qualify as a genuine latter-day hero. I wrote this march and dedicated it to him not to flatter him – he is immune to such things. I rather wanted to expose the young people of Catholic Central High (as well as any others who may perform it or hear it) to such a hero. While this march is especially for my friend Bob Morin, it is also for all others who have served or will serve the betterment of humankind in any way.

        The listener will hear suggestions of "The Star Spangled Banner", "Anchors Aweigh!", the call of the ship’s bugler, "The Navy Hymn", the guns of battle, the bell tolling for the lost, and even a little of Sousa’s "Hurrah For The Red White and Blue!" Please enjoy the music. Memorial Day, 2007   Play it With a Click!

        Kids For Christ!  - This is a little march wherein the first theme is the kids' expression of "Stand Up For Jesus", which is followed by the parents' response . . . "Count Your Blessings."  It is pure fun. For small band, quite easy, approx.1:30.    Click Here To Hear It!

        Blessed Assurance  -  This is a meditation on the favorite old hymn by Emil Soderstrom.  It was first written in 1951 as a piano solo which was so very difficult it received little attention.  I created a simplified version of the piano version and now have scored it for both brass an concert bands.  This is level 4 scoring, with all vital parts cued and/or doubled.  Moderate difficulty - approx. 4:20.    Listen To Dr. Soderstrom's Piece

        The Challenge - Trumpet Solo - Eric Ball - This solo was written for the famous BBC Trumpeter, Will Overton, early in 1939. Will recorded it then on 78 r.p.m. disk with the composer at the piano. It lives up to it's name and is a formidable "challenge".  It is published by The Salvation Army SP&S in UK for piano or brass band accompaniment.  It features a very old Salvation Army song "All Hail, I’m Saved!" There is no attribution for the tune other than "Ranter tune" (The Ranters were a radical English sect in the time of the Commonwealth, who were regarded as heretical by the established Church of that period.) The peculiar words are of anonymous origin, but likely from within The Salvation Army. "Soldiers fighting round the cross, fight for your Lord! Reckon all things else but loss, fight for your Lord! All hail, I’m saved! Come and join our conquering band, all hail, I’m saved! We’ll conquer if we die!"  Eric was very conscious of the words to hymns when he wrote. However, Eric’s treatment of this tune is truly, in this writer’s estimation, a case of a master turning a musical sow’s ear into a silk purse. It is in classical Sonata Allegro form and has been a staple for such great trumpeters, other than Overton as Philip Smith and Carole Reinhart, both of whom have recorded it.   Click to hear "The Challenge" 


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