GREAT ARTICLE BY BY DOUGLAS YEO! VISIT HIS PAGE FOR MORE OF HIS WORK!
by Douglas Yeo
NOTE: This article contains offensive material of an historical nature that is presented in an effort to inform the trombone community of a regrettable vestige of racism that continues to be a part of the trombone’s concert repertoire since it first came to light over 100 years ago. It is my hope that this article will lead trombonists around the world to make important, needed changes in the repertoire we choose for our recitals, and rid our concerts of music that is rooted in racial stereotyping and racist portrayals of African Americans.
In 1908, American composer Henry Fillmore (1881-1956) composed Miss Trombone for solo trombone and piano; it was published by his family’s company, Fillmore Music House of Cincinnati. Miss Trombone was a novelty piece in ragtime style and it featured slide glissandos, or what were also referred to at the time as “trombone smears.” The glissando…
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