Some time ago, I found the sheet music for “Carlisle Indian School March” at the Library of Congress and ordered a copy. What arrived was a piano score with no arrangement for band instruments. Not being able to play the piano or find someone willing to take the time to learn the tune, I was out of luck. I feared that I would never hear it played. But last week I discovered something that could make it possible to hear it. MuseScore is free software that allows you to key in music scores, print sheet music for them and, most important to me, play it back.
The software downloaded easily onto my computer, but not after having a scare. Because my machine was running short of disk space, I attempted to download it onto my wife’s laptop which has ample space available. Very early into the process, her computer uttered a brief whimper and emitted some smoke. That was followed by the all-too-familiar smell of burnt electronics. People on the MuseScore support forum assured me that it was a coincidence. Logically, I knew that but my wife’s computer had just died while I was using it. So, I intrepidly ventured forward and installed the software from www.MuseScore.org without a hitch.
Entering all the notes, etc. wasn’t easy, especially given that I don’t play the piano and my music education ended with playing the bass clarinet in the jr. high band very early in the Kennedy administration. But it was completed over the weekend. It can be heard at Carlisle Indian School March.
Now, the challenge is to get it arranged for the various instruments in a marching band. Since I know nothing about arranging music, I must rely on the kindness of others. A Dickinson College professor has expressed interest in the project. It would be great to hear this historic music played by a real band.