Little English Suite
by Clare Grundman


Cleveland-born Clare Grundman (1913 – 1996) earned his bachelor’s degree in 1934 from Ohio State University. He taught instrumental music in the Ohio and Kentucky public schools before returning to Ohio State in 1936 for a master’s degree and to teach orchestration and woodwinds. At the Berkshire Music Center in New Lenox, Massachusetts, he studied under Paul Hindemith, whom he credited for providing the practical techniques for composition. During World War II, Grundman served in the U.S. Coast Guard. He took a special interest in composing for school bands and has over 70 published band compositions to his credit. His arrangements have brought the works of Leonard Bernstein and Aaron Copland to the band world. Grundman has also provided scores and arrangements for radio, television, movies, and Broadway musicals. Some of his notable works include his Fantasy on American Sailing Songs, Tuba Rhapsody, An Irish Rhapsody and his four-part series of American Folk Rhapsody.

Year of composition: 1968

Publisher: Boosey and Hawkes, Inc.

Grade: 4

Type of Composition: Suite

Style: Medley of four folk songs

Programming suggestions: This work is a suite of four old English folk songs: “ The Leather Bottle” , “ Roving,” “ We Met” and “ The Vicar of Bray.” The composer’s most notable and popular compositions draw on folk and popular melodies for their substance. This suite belongs to that genre. This group of settings was published in 1968. The four movements, totaling 206 measures, are seven minutes in length.

Solo instruments: cornet (mvt. II)

Anecdotal notes: Mvt. 1: 3 flats; Mvt.2: 1 flat; Mvt. 3: 2 flats; Mvt. 4: 3 flats

Mvt. 1: 6/8 (m.1-55); 2/4 (m.55-66); Mvt. 2: 4/4; Mvt 3: 3/4 (m.101-116); 4/4 (m.117-125); 3/4 (m.126-141); Mvt. 4: 2/2 (m.142-202); 3/2 (m(203-206)

Clarinet 1 has a divisi section in Mvt. 3. Clarinet 2 has a divisi section in Mvt. 3. Alto Sax 2 goes higher than Alto Sax 1 in some parts of Mvt. 4. Different tempos within several of the movements. Use of crescendo, decrescendo, ritardando. Cornets need straight mute in Mvt. 2. Horn in F has triplet figure in Mvt. 2. Tubas and string basses have octave divisi parts throught the entire piece. Cornet has small solo in Mvt. 2

Discography: “ Virtuoso” (the John Willem Friso Military Band) CD #DHR 02.030-3…TEACHING MUSIC THROUGH PERFORMANCE IN BAND RESOURCE CD RECORDINGS Volume 1 CD418

Recording of "The Leather Bottle"

Recording of "We Met"

Recording of "The Vicar of Bray"

Recording of "Roving"