Buzzards In Love (Wind Ensemble)

Roger M. Aldridge

About this work:

Buzzards in Love is an extended piece for wind ensemble or concert band.  I wanted to do something different for wind ensemble with this composition.  I decided to use techniques that are often in my writing for contemporary large jazz ensemble.   This gives a wind ensemble a distinctly different sound.

The music tells a story about two buzzards finding each other.  Section titles in the score include: buzzard search for life's meaning, buzzard attraction, buzzard tango, buzzard dating, roadkill interlude (open improvisation section), and buzzard love in the sky.  This piece has a spirit of fun and adventure. 

The composition is dedicated to Charlie Mariano, one of my favorite teachers at Berklee. Besides being one of the greatest jazz alto saxophonists, Charlie had an equally great sense of humor.

The score has two sections where improvisation is used: "roadkill interlude" and over the 5/4 vamp toward the end. These sections can have any creative possibility taking place. The improv can be in a new music style, jazz, or even (as an example) using a violin to play in an old-time or bluegrass fiddle style. Anything creative and fun is fair game!

Besides wind ensemble, the piece can be performed by a large jazz orchestra with additional woodwinds and brass. There is also a lead sheet version of the score so it can be performed by small jazz groups.

The musicians on the Roadkill Interlude section are Jason Shapiro, soprano saxophone; E. Shawn Qaissaunee, guitar; Brian Howell, bass; and Skip Rohrich, drums.  The other sections of the composition were produced with Silibelius software and is an approximation of how the piece sounds with a real band.

This piece can be purchased at Sheet Music Plus.

Year composed: 2009
Duration: 00:00:00
Ensemble type: Band:Wind Ensemble
Instrumentation notes: Scored for 4 flutes, alto flute (featured), oboe, bassoon, 3 clarinets, bass clarinet, 2 alto saxes, tenor sax, baritone sax, 4 trumpets, 3 french horns, 3 trombones, baritone horn, tuba.

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