“Songs of a Sojourner” is a set of four unaccompanied pieces that are marked by lyrical lines and freedom. These are separate pieces, therefore they do not need to be performed together. While each piece has meter, the overall feeling should be one of freedom. While these pieces can be performed on recitals, they are also designed for a sort of private meditation for trumpet players. The title of each piece comes from a location at Hocking Hills State Park in Logan, OH.
1. Cantwell Cliffs
2. Conkles Hollow
3. Rim Trail
4. Cedar Falls
While hiking in each of these locations I wrote poems based on the experience. I then took these poems and wrote the unaccompanied trumpet solos.
When I entered Cantwell Cliffs, I was completely alone and surrounded by cliffs and deep valleys, therefore the poem centers around silence, open spaces, and finding comfort in solitude. The opening two lines from the poem are:
“The loudest sound is silence.
Or maybe it’s my own breath.”
Conkles Hollow is a rugged and rocky gorge. I imagined the performer playing this lyrical solo on top of the cliff overlooking the wide space of beautiful scenery.
Rim Trail is a challenging trail that circles the edge of the cliffs at Conkles Hollow. The solo for Rim Trail is the only piece in the set that has a faster and more energetic style. This solo begins and ends with a fast and articulate style, while the lyrical portion is placed in the middle.
Cedar Falls is a lonely, yet beautiful place filled with water falls. To me, these water falls represent a quiet, calm and free type of rejoicing. I believe the flugelhorn has the best timbre for this type of rejoicing.
Euphonium players are also welcome to use or perform these unaccompanied pieces. However, I created an accompanied version of these pieces titled Poems that includes material from Conkles Hollow, Rim Trail and Cedar Falls.
Trumpet players, I also created an accompanied version of Cantwell Cliffs to give you an additional option for recitals. That piece is titled Poem at Cantwell Cliffs.