(b Spring Hill, PA, Jan 21, 1887; d Whittier, CA, July 3, 1960). American gospel composer and editor, brother of Bentley DeForest Ackley. He studied harmony and composition in New York and London, and later became an accomplished cellist. Ackley was ordained by the Presbyterian Church in 1914...
Thomas Henry Porter
(b Spring Hill, PA, Sept 27, 1872; d Winona Lake, IN, Sept 3, 1958). American gospel music composer and editor, brother of Alfred H(enry) Ackley. He learned to play several instruments, including melodeon, piano, reed organ, alto horn, cornet, piccolo, and clarinet. He studied shorthand and typing and then worked as a stenographer in New York and Philadelphia. Several of his secular songs were published in the 1890s. From 1908 to 1915 Ackley was pianist and private secretary to the evangelist Billy Sunday, and during this period he began to compose gospel songs. In 1910 he and Homer A. Rodeheaver founded the Rodeheaver–Ackley publishing company in Chicago, which became the Rodeheaver Co. the following year. He worked for the firm as a composer and editor until his death; with his brother and Charles H. Gabriel, he provided many of the firm’s copyrighted publications. More than 2000 of Ackley’s gospel songs were published, including “If your Heart Keeps Right” (...
Peter Andreas Kjeldsberg
revised by Martin Anderson
(b Fredrikstad, April 29, 1872; d Oslo, Dec 24, 1932). Norwegian composer, conductor and organist. He studied with Peter Lindeman (organ) and Iver Holter (harmony, counterpoint and composition) at the Christiania Music and Organ School (1888–92), and was then a pupil of Reinecke (composition) and Ruthard (piano) at the Leipzig Conservatory (1892–4). Appointments as organist followed in Drammen (1895–1907) and Oslo (1907–32), where he served at the cathedral from 1916; his First Symphony was completed during a course of study in Berlin in 1897. He was one of those responsible for the foundation of the Norsk Komponistforening, of which he was president from 1921 to 1923. As a member of the Koralbokkomiteen (1922–6) he harmonized most of the melodies in the chorale book of the Norwegian Church, and he edited preludes to all of the chorales. He was active as a choir-conductor, leading the Håndverksangforening (...
(b Mainz, Jan 13, 1883; d Wiesbaden, Sept 15, 1978). German librettist and publisher. In 1909 he joined his father Ludwig Strecker (1853–1943) as a partner in the music publishing house of Schott in Mainz, becoming a director with his brother Willy Strecker (1884–1958) in 1920. From an early age he had shown a deep interest in literature and poetry, and during the 1930s began to develop his skills as a librettist, adopting the professional pseudonym of Ludwig Andersen. His first efforts were in oratorio, but he soon moved on to opera, adapting Franz Graf von Pocci’s tale Die Zaubergeige (1935) for Werner Egk, Karl Simrock’s version of the medieval puppet play Doktor Johannes Faust (1936) for Hermann Reutter, and Hermann Heinz Ortner’s drama Tobias Wunderlich (1937) for Joseph Haas. The first two of these works ranked among the most frequently performed contemporary operas in Nazi Germany and were largely responsible for securing Schott’s reputation as the pre-eminent German publisher of music-theatre works of the period. During World War II Andersen completed librettos for two comic operas, Wolf-Ferrari’s ...
Roxanne R. Reed
(b Anguilla, MS, March 21, 1919; d Hazel Crest, IL, 15 June, 1995). American gospel director, singer, composer, and publisher. Anderson established a career forming and training gospel groups in Chicago. His formative years were spent as one of the original Roberta Martin Singers, one of the premiere gospel groups of the 1930s and 1940s. He left briefly, between 1939 and 1941, to form the first of his many ensembles, the Knowles and Anderson Singers with R.L. Knowles. He rejoined Martin, but ultimately resigned because of the travel demands. In 1947 he formed Robert Anderson and his Gospel Caravan, but after several members left in 1952, he formed a new set of singers that recorded and performed under the name the Robert Anderson Singers through the mid-1950s. Throughout his career, Anderson recorded on a multitude of labels including Miracle and United with Robert Anderson and the Caravans; and later with the Robert Anderson Singers, on Apollo. Anderson wrote, and often sang lead on, many of the songs his groups performed, including “Why Should I Worry” (...
(b Comber, Co. Down, Aug 10, 1904; d Oxford, Oct 10, 1965). Northern Irish music scholar, teacher, organist, composer and editor. He went to Bedford School, and studied at the RCM in London, Trinity College, Dublin, and New College, Oxford, gaining doctorates of music at both universities. In 1938, after four years as organist and choirmaster at Beverley Minster, he moved to a similar position at New College. Thereafter, he lived and worked in Oxford, where he was a university lecturer in music and a Fellow of New College, and later of Balliol. He also taught at the RCM.
Andrews's published work consists of three books, various articles (including contributions to the fifth edition of Grove's Dictionary of Music), reviews, and several motets, services and songs. The Oxford Harmony, vol.ii, traces the development of chromatic harmony through standard repertory works and relates this to techniques of composition. The opening chapters of ...
Greg A. Handel
(b West Hempstead, NY, April 26, 1956). American music educator, choral arranger, editor, and conductor. He was a member of the American Boychoir (1969–71), and received degrees from St Olaf College (BM 1978), the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (MM 1980), and Michigan State University (DMA 1987). He was on the summer faculty of the American Boychoir School and now serves on the Board of Trustees. He taught at Calvin College (1980–90) before becoming the fourth conductor of the St Olaf Choir and the Harry R. and Thora H. Tosdal Endowed Professor of Music (1990–). Armstrong is the editor for Earthsongs publications and co-editor of the St. Olaf Choir Series. He chronicled the history of the St Olaf Choir in his doctoral dissertation. He is featured on an instructional video for adolescent singers, Body, Mind, Spirit, Voice (2002...
(b Llandaff, Nov 29, 1869; d Worcester, Nov 26, 1953). English organist, composer and editor. After instruction from his father and C. Lee Williams, Atkins became a pupil and assistant of G.R. Sinclair at Truro and Hereford, and was appointed organist of Ludlow parish church in 1893. In 1897 he became organist of Worcester Cathedral, retiring in 1950, having directed the Worcester Three Choirs Festivals from 1898 to 1948. He revived the festivals after World War I and was knighted in 1921. Though he was not a gifted conductor, the programmes of the Worcester Festivals under him showed considerable breadth of taste, and it was at his insistence that Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius was performed in 1902. His own Hymn of Faith was given in 1905 and revived in 1993.
Atkins produced (with Elgar) an English-language edition of Bach’s St Matthew Passion, and (alone) of Bach’s St John Passion...
Raoul F. Camus
(b Grafton, WV, March 20, 1865; d Oskaloosa, IA, Nov 18, 1929). American music publisher, bandmaster, and composer. As a child, he was given cornet lessons by his uncles. He became a proficient soloist, and by the age of 16 was director of the Grafton Band. He then toured for several years with musical comedy companies. In 1886 he moved to Mount Pleasant, Iowa, where he directed the local band and set up a music publishing business. He moved his family and business first to Burlington, Iowa, in 1888, and then to Oskaloosa in 1891. For many years he directed the Iowa Brigade Band, for which he provided a rehearsal hall. He published more than 100 of his own band compositions, including cornet solos, marches, galops, waltzes, and dirges; some works appeared under the pseudonyms Jim Fisk and A.M. Laurens. A number of his marches are recorded in the Heritage of the March series compiled by Robert Hoe, Jr. (6, A, G, O, FF, ZZ, RRR). His publishing business flourished, becoming one of the largest in the country. In addition to his own compositions, he published the works of such important composers as Fred Jewell, J.J. Richards, Karl King, Russell Alexander, and Walter English. The company bearing his name continues to publish band music of high quality....
(b Plainfield, NJ, March 14, 1949). American composer, engraver, author, and editor. Báthory-Kitsz has written under a wide array of aliases, including Kalvos Gesamte, Grey Shadé, D.B. Cowell, Brady Kynans, and Kalvos Zondrios. He is a self-proclaimed humanist and believes strongly in the power of everyday people to create and perform music. He has also advocated for locally-centered performances and has been a tremendous force in the creative life of Vermont, where he has made his home. While Báthory-Kitsz remains a highly prolific composer, penning over one thousand works since the late 1960s, he is also recognized as an important writer, both on music and on other topics, such as computers and Vermont country stores. Báthory-Kitsz’s commitment to the life of music reaches out from his own compositions, which he allows people to download and perform for free, and also to his advocacy for the performance of contemporary music, seen especially in his involvement with several festivals and projects that keep “modern” music in the forefront. He has served on the board, directed, and founded many of these events himself. He was the director and founder of Dashuki Music Theater (...
revised by Harry Eskew
(b Lebanon, AL, Dec 8, 1887; d Dallas, TX, Jan 21, 1960). American publisher and composer of gospel songs. He attended singing schools of Thomas B. Mosley and Anthony J. Showalter and became proficient in writing both words and music of gospel songs, probably composing more convention songs than any other gospel music publisher of his time. A compilation of his songs, Precious Abiding Peace, was published in 1960. He was an outstanding singing school teacher and conducted his own schools until 1922, after which he managed the Showalter office in Texarkana, Texas. In 1926 Baxter joined with Virgil O. Stamps in establishing the Stamps-Baxter Music Company in Jacksonville, Texas. When the company moved to Dallas in 1929, Baxter opened a branch office in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Stamps-Baxter became the foremost publisher of gospel music in seven-shape notation. Following Stamps’s death in 1940, Baxter moved to Dallas and became president of the firm. By ...
(b Janesville, WI, Aug 11, 1862; d Hollywood, CA, Dec 28, 1946). American composer and publisher. She showed early talent for improvising songs to her own words and in painting. Her only formal study was with local teachers and at 18 she married E.J. Smith, by whom she had one child. They separated in 1887 and in 1889 she married Frank Lewis Bond. She published her first songs in 1894. Frustrated by difficulties in getting further songs published, and displaying the enterprising spirit that characterized the rest of her life, she formed her own publishing company, Carrie Jacobs-Bond & Son. By performing her songs she cultivated influential contacts. The baritone David Bispham sang a recital exclusively of Bond songs in Chicago in 1901, and friends arranged for her to perform for President Roosevelt at the White House. She published about 175 songs, of which two were highly successful. ...
revised by Malcolm Turner
(b London, March 25, 1871; d London, Oct 3, 1947). English writer on music, music editor, teacher, organist and composer. He studied at the Royal College of Music under Parratt, C.H. Lloyd and Parry (1888–92). He held posts as organist of Worcester College, Oxford (1891–4), Wells Cathedral (1896–9) and Bristol Cathedral (1899–1901), and was then appointed director of music at Harrow School, a post that he held until 1927. In 1910 he succeeded Prout as professor of music at Trinity College, Dublin, occupying the chair until 1920. In 1925 he was appointed King Edward Professor of Music in the University of London and had meanwhile begun to teach at the RCM. When he left Harrow he became music adviser to the London County Council (1927–36). In August 1937, on his retirement from the London professorship, he received a knighthood....
Rodney Slatford and Marita P. McClymonds
[Giovanni Battista; J.B.
(b Venice, 1761; d Bath, Feb 27, 1805). Italian composer, singer, violinist and music publisher. Born of a noble family, he studied the violin, cello and piano. In 1789 his Ati e Cibele, a favola per musica in two short scenes, was performed in Venice. This was soon followed by Pimmalione, a monodrama after Rousseau for tenor and orchestra with a small part for soprano, and Il ratto di Proserpina. Choron and Fayolle reported that, dissatisfied with Pimmalione, Cimador burnt the score and renounced composition. Artaria, however, advertised publication of the full score in 1791 in Vienna and excerpts were published later in London. The work achieved considerable popularity throughout Europe as a concert piece for both male and female singers, being revived as late as 1836. While still in Venice he wrote a double bass concerto for the young virtuoso Dragonetti; the manuscript survives, together with Dragonetti's additional variations on the final Rondo, which he evidently considered too short....
H. Wiley Hitchcock
(b Washington, DC, May 13, 1874; d Wollaston, MA, Sept 15, 1956). American music editor and composer. He studied organ with George William Walter and held various positions in Washington as a church organist. After moving to Providence in 1899 and then to Boston in 1901, he was a music editor for the firm of Ditson (...
Catherine Parsons Smith
(b New York, Sept 9, 1905; d Bridgeport, CT, May 21, 1992). American composer, teacher and editor. She studied with Homer Grunn in Los Angeles. In 1922 she toured the midwestern Chautauqua circuit as a pianist. She studied composition with Goetschius (1922–3), Rubin Goldmark (1924–7, with fellowships from the Juilliard Graduate School) and Boulanger (1927); piano with Boyle and Lhévinne. Dissatisfied with teaching and with the reception of her music, she worked on the editorial staff of Time magazine from 1945 until 1952. Later she travelled widely, living for several years on Tahiti and Vanuatu.
Her elegant music, which uses the pandiatonic harmonic vocabulary of its time, is marked by its neo-classical, symmetrical form and its rhythmic forcefulness. The Piano Quintet and the Violin Sonata no.1 both won awards from the Society for the Publication of American Music. Her orchestral works have been performed by the symphony orchestras of Cincinnati, Rochester, Scranton and Sydney....
(b Dec 17, 1850; d West Palm Beach, FL, July 17, 1916). American tunebook compiler, arranger and composer. In 1902 he published The Sacred Harp, Revised and Improved (Dothan, AL), a revision of B.F. White and E.J. King's The Sacred Harp (Philadelphia, 1844), in which he arranged the formerly three-part tunes for four voices. When J.S. James published another version of The Sacred Harp (1911) in four parts, Cooper filed a law suit claiming James had used his alto parts in the book; the suit was dismissed on the grounds that an alto voice alone was not an original composition. Further editions of Cooper's book appeared in 1907, 1909 (the last in which he is listed as the publisher) and 1927. With the 1949 edition the name of the Cooper revision changed to The B.F. White Sacred Harp; it reappeared under that title in 1960...
David Nicholls and Joel Sachs
(b Menlo Park, CA, March 11, 1897; d Shady, NY, Dec 10, 1965). American composer, writer, pianist, publisher, and teacher. Described by Cage as “the open sesame for new music in America,” he was an early advocate for many of the main developments in 20th-century music, including the systematization of modernist techniques, the exploration of timbral resources, and transculturalism.
Many facets of Cowell’s remarkable personality resulted from the unusual circumstances of his upbringing. His father, Harry, had immigrated to British Columbia with his brother after their own father, the Dean of Kildare’s Anglican Cathedral, bought them some land. Finding no satisfaction in farming life, Harry moved to San Francisco in search of a literary career. Henry’s mother Clara (usually called Clarissa) Dixon, a gifted writer, was the daughter of a fundamentalist Midwestern farming family. She had left the church and their community, married, and produced a son called Clarence. After he ran away from home as a teenager, Clarissa fled her stifling small-town life for San Francisco. In the Bay area, she met Harry, with whom she founded a philosophical-anarchist newsletter. As dedicated anarchists, they rejected the heavy hand of government, including what they saw as the homogenizing power of conventional public schooling. They built a little cottage on the still-rural edge of Menlo Park, where Stanford University was being constructed. Henry Cowell was born there, and Menlo Park remained his principal base until ...
Harry B. Soria Jr.
[Albert R. ]
(b Honolulu, HI, Oct 1, 1879; d Honolulu, HI, Jan 23, 1933). Composer, arranger, publisher, pianist, and bandleader, active in Hawaii. Cunha’s compositions early in the 20th century spearheaded the development of the hapa haole song, featuring predominantly English lyrics with some references to Hawaii and the Hawaiian language, earning him the title of “Father of Hapa Haole Songs.” His innovation is credited with making Hawaii’s music accessible to a much wider audience, which rapidly grew to global proportions over the next few decades.
Cunha left Hawaii to attend Yale University, where he excelled in sports, the Yale Glee Club, and composed Yale’s “Boola, Boola.” Rather than practice law after graduation, he toured the mainland United States performing a new kind of Hawaiian song, combining the popular ragtime rhythm of American music with Hawaiian songs. Cunha returned to Hawaii and composed his first hapa haole song, “Waikiki Mermaid,” in ...
(b Port Huron, MI, April 17, 1943). American composer, conductor, educator, and publisher. He received some of his earliest training in the Salvation Army Instrumental Music program, a debt he later repaid as editor of their music publications. He undertook undergraduate studies at Wayne State University (BM 1966) and graduate studies at Michigan State (MM 1970), studying euphonium with Leonard Falcone and conducting with Harry Begian. His composition teachers were F. Maxwell Wood, James Gibb, Jere Hutchinson, and Irwin Fischer. He has over 400 works in his catalog, mostly tonal, many of which take their inspiration from literature. He is widely known for his symphonic band and brass band works, several of which have won major awards: Symphonic Triptych, Collage for Band (ASBDA/Volkwein, 1977, 1979), Mutanza, Symphonic Variants for Euphonium and Band (ABA/Ostwald, 1980, 1984), and Lochinvar (Coup de Vents, France, 1994). His prolific output for young musicians reflects his many years teaching at public school and college levels. He founded and presides over Curnow Music Press, Inc....