Music that sounds like a Train!

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by meandmycornet, Jan 15, 2007.

  1. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    I know there are lots of compositions based on trains.... but I can't remember any!

    Can you?

    I know of Stephenson's Rockets and Ticket to Ride, but don't know the composers'!

    I want a piece of music that actually sounds like a train preferrably!

    any ideas?

    Thanking you muchly,

  2. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    Orient Express by Philip Sparke is a great piece, and has probably the best representaion of a train leaving a station I've heard.

    Oh and Ticket to Ride was composed by Lennon and McCartney :tongue: but I think the brass arrangement your looking for was by Alan Fernie.
  3. DaveR

    DaveR Active Member

    Lennon and McCartney (AKA The Beatles!)

    Coronation Scot is another piece that depicts a train ride. Not sure if it actually "sounds" like a train though...

    When I was at Uni my composition teacher wrote a piece that sounded like a train too - unfortunately I can't remember what it was called. However, if you are wanting it for use with 7 year olds, then it might have been a bit highbrow anyway! :tongue:
  4. Steve Reich did a piece in three movements called Different Trains. Its really cool, and does actually sound like a train! Ok, i'll stop sounding like a geek now!! :oops:
  5. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    Just curious here Fi - what are you after this for?
  6. AndyCat

    AndyCat Active Member

    Seem to remember one called "Inter City".
  7. meandmycornet

    meandmycornet Active Member

    Music homework type of thing!

    Have to do a lesson plan for a follow up lesson to a lesson I taught at the end of December.
    I did about pitch for that lesson, so doing tempo this time and how they work together.

    I thought I'd use a train as an analogy for explain fast and slow.... i.e. its slow going up the hill, moderate going along the flat and fast going down the hill. Then have the kids make 'train tracks' i.e. a diagram of tempo and see if they can perform with percussion instruments.

    Not that i've actually got to teach the lesson, but I like to do my research properly so I know what I'm talking about!

    Oh and Dave.... its for 10/11 year olds this time!
  8. BigHorn

    BigHorn Active Member

    The most 'Descriptive' train piece I know is the 'Worth valley railway' from 3 Harworth Impressions. The start of the piece where the train is pulling away is unbeleivably life like.
  9. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    If I remember correctly, "Oregon" by Jacob De Haan contains a train impression as well. A very popular lower sections test piece over here... (for different types of bands, also for brass band I think)

    not a train but similar: at university, they had one of these old steam engines with a very big flywheel in one of the laboratories. One year, a special piece was composed for the faculty orchestra, a piece for "orchestra and steam engine". Very impressive, although I think it has been performed only twice :)
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2007
  10. timbloke

    timbloke Member

    From what I remember "Grand Central Station" from Jim Paker's "A Londoner In New York" suite for brass ensemble (in the Just Brass series available here, is quite descriptive of the station and trains and stuff. Also a very enjoyable suite to play.
  11. drummergurl

    drummergurl Active Member

    we played a piece that was 1 movement out of a set of 3 i think.. i can't quite remember, anyway.. it was called the Royal Border Bridge. i also can't remember who it was by... so this post is totally useless really. but maybe someone else can shed some light onto this..

    the piece depicts a train journey over the royal border bridge in berwick upon tweed.
  12. HBB

    HBB Active Member

    3 Impressions by Arthur Butterworth, it's the 3rd movement!
  13. Flutey

    Flutey Active Member

    Not sure if you're after only brass music, but Ian Clarke has written a piece for solo flute called 'The Great Train Race' which actually does sound like a train. I've had the pleasure of being at a workshop with him, and the live performance of this piece is excellent! Fi, if you want to hear it or anything, msn me!
  14. flashbarry

    flashbarry Member

    Inter City is by Darrol and is available from Studio Music.

  15. S Carey

    S Carey New Member

    Pacific 231 by Arthur Honegger, and I'm A Train, by the Kings Singers. I use both of these when teaching ostinato and about machines. Pacific 231 is slow to start and builds up in the middle, slowing at the end.
  16. Do you have th Music Matters books at your school? There is a reeeaaallly good vocal score in there, which gives the effect of a train. The kids make the relevant train noises, you split them up into 4 different parts and i found it worked really, really well with year 7. Our head of music liases with the feeder primary school and does it with them all the time. You could speed them up and slow them down etc. PM me if you would like a copy.
  17. Apologies... I don't actually have it after all... but if your school has the Music Matters books then it will be in there!
  18. Lewis Chris

    Lewis Chris Member

    Have to agree with this, having been on the railway it's written about, it is fantastic how the composer caught all the atmosphere.
  19. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Well-Known Member

    Heitor Villa-Lobos: Toccata from Bachianas Brasileiras No. 2 - "Trenzinho do Caipira" ("Little Train of the Caipira") - sample midi file here:

    Also I think there were some tracks on the albums Oxygene and Magnetic Fields by french electro-nutter Jean Michel Jarre that sounded like trains. If I remember what they were I'll let you know. [EDIT: Magnetic Fields Part IV worth a try]

    In brass band terms, Alan Fernie's arrangement of Ticket to Ride is a great example, as are Sparke's Orient Express, and Royal Border Bridge (from Butterworth: Three Impressions for Brass available on Dyke's Butterworth CD)
  20. iggmeister

    iggmeister Member

    I think Wynton Marsalis did and album called 'Big Train'. That is great and would be good to play on a CD.


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