Article Band Stocks

Image: Band Stock Pages

The term "stock" or "stock arrangement" may not be well known to the general public. Indeed, the term also may not be familiar to the ordinary performing musician. Stock arrangements generally are published orchestrations for instrumental ensembles--bands or small orchestras--that enable them to perform popular songs or piano works that previously either had been unpublished in any form, or published only as piano or piano-vocal works.

The practice of scoring a work in a "stock" version dates back as early as the mid-18th century. The operas of Mozart often were adapted by skilled arrangers for various instrumental ensembles in greatly truncated versions or potpourris. In America, this practice first shows up in published works beginning just before the Civil War. Military band versions and small orchestra arrangements of popular songs, medleys from stage works, or any timely work which captured the public's fancy, often were arranged in various dance forms: quadrilles, lancers, quick-step marches.

In the early part of the 20th century, African-American composers began to see their works published as stock arrangements. Scott Joplin, James Reese Europe, and Eubie Blake are but a few of the enormously popular composers of "hit" songs who saw their works made available in stock versions during their lifetime.

African-American Band Music and Recordings, 1883-1923, provides instrumental parts for a representative sampling of the enormous body of published stock arrangements. The 1920s marked the beginning of the great era of popular song and of stock arrangement publishing. However, works published in 1923 and beyond remain under copyright protection. The public domain publications included here provide a valuable foundation for appreciating the formative years of stock arrangement publishing, a window into musical tastes and styles of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and the contributions of both well-known and now obscure composers, both black and white, to American music.

About this Item

Title
Band Stocks
Subject Headings
-  African American music -- History and criticism
-  Band music -- History and criticism
-  Popular Songs of the Day
-  Songs and Music
-  Parlor and Concert Stage
-  Social Change
-  Progressive Era to New Era (1900-1929)
-  Articles
Genre
article
Online Format
online text
Description
Article. Article. African-American Band Music and Recordings, 1883-1923, provides instrumental parts for a representative sampling of the enormous body of published stock arrangements. The 1920s marked the beginning of the great era of popular song and of stock arrangement publishing. However, works published in 1923 and beyond remain under copyright protection. The public domain publications included here provide a valuable foundation for appreciating the formative years of stock arrangement publishing, a window into musical tastes and styles of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and the contributions of both well-known and now obscure composers, both black and white, to American music.
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Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item and securing any necessary permission ultimately rests with persons desiring to use the item. Users should consult the bibliographic information that accompanies each item for specific information. This catalog data provides the details known to the Library of Congress regarding the corresponding items and may assist users in making independent assessments of the legal status of these items as related to their desired uses.

Items included here with the permission of the rights holders are indicated as such in the bibliographic record for each item.

In some cases, the Library was unable to identify a possible rights holder and has elected to place some of those items online as an exercise of fair use for strictly non-commercial educational uses. The Library of Congress would like to learn more about these materials and would like to hear from individuals or institutions that have any additional information or know of their history. Please contact:  Performing Arts Reading Room.

Suggested credit line: Library of Congress, Music Division.

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Band Stocks. Online Text. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/ihas.200038863/. (Accessed November 18, 2017.)

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