Military Music And Its Story - online book

The Rise & Development Of Military Music

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72                 MILITARY MUSIC AND ITS STORY.
and the King of Poland obtains from the Sultan one of these bands in " full rig." In a very short time the "Turkish music" contagion takes a hold of most European armies. The foundation of military bands in the Austro-Hungarian is said to date from 1741, when the Chevalier von der Trenck marched into Vienna at the head of his troops, preceded by a Turkish band. About the same time it finds its way into the corps d'elite of France, and Marshal de Saxe employs it in his Uhlans, during the war of 1741. This famous soldier had great faith in the value of the military band, and in his "Reveries" he gives as one reason the Romans were generally victorious, that they were made to march in time. "This," he says, "is the
perfect secret.....It is the reason of the institution
of marches and the beating of the drum." Even that mighty statesman and general, Frederick the Great, could not rest until he had sampled this " Turkish music," and so pleased was he with the imposing appearance of these orientals and their " tools" as Wagner would say, that he introduced percussion in­struments into all hic regimental bands, engaging turbaned and bedizened negroes to manipulate them.
Although this was " all the rage " on the Continent for quite half a century, England showed not the slightest inclination to add to the time-honoured har-monie musik combination by adopting it. Perhaps we ought to credit her with good sense. Yet Handel hcd the temerity to advise Gluck, who had failed to satisfy a London audience with the opera, " La Caduta di'
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