Appalachian Heart



Composer(s) / Arranger(s): Shaun Salem

Performance Time: 5:15  |  Grade: 3  |  Style: Contemporary

East Tennessee is geographically located near the southern end of the Appalachian Mountains. Growing up on a farm overlooking the “Appalachian Valley” at the foothills of the Smoky Mountains, my backyard was a third of an acre that stretched deep into a valley. Each morning, I would wake up to the sound of my mother calling her horses up to the barn from the pasture in the valley. Appalachian Heart was inspired by the natural sounds and scenery of this beautiful region. The chorale heard at the beginning of the work is intended to evoke a sunrise over the mountains, as light slowly settles into the valley. A trumpet call (at measure 25) is my mother’s call to her horses to be fed. The thunderous gallop of the herd is reimagined in a Gaelic rhythmic groove on bass drums, and the work concludes with the sun setting on the other side of the valley. Regrettably, the farmland of East Tennessee is in decline, and land where horses once peacefully grazed is now occupied by shopping malls, restaurants, and tourist attractions. Horses that my mother and other equestrians are unable to care for are sold to be slaughtered, their remains used to make glue. Appalachian Heart is dedicated to my mother, whose life caring for horses exemplifies the spirit of equestrians in the southern Appalachia.

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Standard Features

  • Complete part set.
  • Booklet or spiral-bound score printed on archival-grade paper.
  • Full-color glossy score cover and jacket.
  • Composer biography.
  • Notes on the piece.
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