Unaccompanied String Music by Howard J. Buss

Compositions        and Arrangements
Grading Scale:
I-II: Easy
III-IV: Intermediate
V-VI: Advanced

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String solos, unaccompanied
(works are in alphabetical order, duations are in parenthesis):

Awakening cover AWAKENING (2011) for solo harp by Howard Buss is soulful and influenced by the Jewish Klezmer idiom. The music moves from a mystical, contemplative opening to an energetic finale. Color is added to the ensemble with the use of wind chimes and finger rolls on the body of the harp. This work is a memorable addition to any recital, and because of its spiritual nature, makes a wonderful musical offering in a house of worship. Written for Paola Devoti. (7’) Grade IV-V. Recorded on the CD Jewish Memories (available from the composer).

Sound samples: Excerpt_1.mp3; Excerpt_2.mp3; Excerpt_3.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press

DANCES and Interludes cover DANCES AND INTERLUDES for solo guitar by Howard J. Buss was commissioned by guitarist, Robert Phillips. It features 3 dance-like sections preceded by a soulful introduction and separated by developmental interludes. The composer was inspired by styles from 3 countries: the songo from Cuba, bossa nova from Brazil, and rumba flamenco from Spain. The songo combines elements of the folkloric rumba with popular Cuban dance music. The Latin beat of the songo is specifically designed for the drum set. Although drums are not used in this piece,the first dance, ala songo, captures the choppy, energetic flavor of the Cuban model. The interlude that follows transitions to the mood for the second dance, ala bossa nova. This section has the smoother, more relaxed quality of this popular Brazilian style. It gradually gives way to the final dance, ala rumba flamenco. The energetic strumming patterns, colorful effects with muted strings, percussive interjections with the palm of the hand and fingertips capture the spirit of this exciting Andalusian genre. (8’15”) Grade V.  Recorded on 4Tay Records, Night/Dances, by Robert Phillips. (CD available from the composer.). (9') Grade V. "Buss’ music is a mix of intellect and fun, taking us on a whistle-stop tour of Afro-Latin musics such as the Cuban Songo, the Brazilian Bossa Nova and flamenco. There is a complexity here that is most appealing." - Fanfare Magazine May/June 2021 (9') Grade V. - Score sample: Excerpts.pdf

Sound Samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3

Sheet music available from Cimarron Music Press

Three Character Sketches coverTHREE CHARACTER SKETCHES FOR SOLO VIOLA (2014) by Howard J. Buss showcases the agility and beautiful, sonorous tone of the unaccompanied viola. Ranging from lyric tenderness to powerful and sometimes fiery displays, the 3 movements, Internal Dialogue, Moving Outward, and Extroversion, explore a wide range of sonic atmospheres and moods. This work is dedicated to violist, Emanuel Olivieri.
(8’) Grade V.
Sound samples: Excerpt_1.mp3; Excerpt_2.mp3; Excerpt_3.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press

Vega coverVEGA OF LYRA “The Harp Star” for solo harp by Howard J. Buss showcases both the agility and the beautiful, sonorous tone of the solo harp. It is dedicated to the renowned Italian harpist, Paola Devoti. The title refers to Vega, also known as Alpha Lyrae, the brightest star in the constellation “Lyra the Harp.” In Greek mythology, Vega’s constellation is said to be the harp played by Orpheus. The title has a dual meaning as it also refers to the person playing the composition. The music ranges from lyric tenderness to powerful, and sometimes fiery technical displays. The music work a wide array of sonic atmospheres and moods. (7’30” ) Grade V.
 Sound samples: Excerpt_1.mp3; Excerpt_2.mp3; Excerpt_3.mp3
View on YouTube

Music available from Cimarron Music Press

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String Music Index:
Click on an instrumentation link, works are listed in alphabetical order within each category.

String solos, unaccompanied



String with one other instrument

String ensembles

Strings in chamber music - trios

Strings in chamber music - quartets

Strings in chamber music - quintets and larger

Howard J. Buss, Composer       

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String Music, catalog of sheet music.
Product description: String Music: Solos, Duos, Chamber Music and Recordings