Review


Charles Collier Jones
Christmas Album for Brass Quintet:
2,1,1,1 plus alternate part for E-flat tenor horn, B-flat flugelhorn and treble clef baritone

N.p., , United States
Publisher: http://www.nyx.net/~dschwart/
Date of Publication: 2018
URL: http://www.nyx.net/~dschwart/

Score and parts available as free downloads from the website.

Genre: BRASS ENSEMBLES

This collection of Christmas carols is taken from arrangements that Charles Collier Jones did for his Northeastern United States group the Cape Ann Brass Quintet. There are twenty five arrangements in the album, including many standard and common carols along with a few less frequently performed, such as Gabriel’s Message, Swiss Noel, and Three Kings March. The arrangements are simple and elegant, and retain the warm character of these familiar songs.

Performance demands are moderate. The carols are arranged largely in the middle and lower ranges of each instrument, with the trumpets rarely exceeding f2, for example, and the trombones staying below g1. Melodies and important harmonies are distributed among all five parts. The arrangements are brief for each carol, which, along with accessible parts, makes the collection suitable for a variety of performance situations. These could be used for casual performance at parties and events, for outdoor brass “caroling,” or a few of them could be pieced together for an on-stage performance. They could be easily read by advanced quintets and also learned by younger groups at the high school level.

The selections in this publication were newly edited by the arranger and David Schwartz, and are generously available for free download from Mr. Schwartz’s website. The engraving is clear and easy to read, and while the music is not too advanced, there are plenty of rhythmic and harmonic elements that provide interest beyond just the standard melodies. The collection also includes alternate parts for E-flat Alto Horn, B-flat Flugelhorn, and B-flat treble clef trombone or baritone. As of June 2018, they can be accessed at the following URL: http://www.nyx.net/~dschwart/bordogni_news.html.

Reviewer: James Adams
Review Published January 31, 2019