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2022 Pilot Point Bands
Spring Concert Program Notes

The following pieces are being premiered by the Pilot Point Bands tonight. Below are the program notes for each of these special performances. 

Higher Love to be performed by the PPHS Jazz Band

(not)Alone to be performed by the PPHS Symphonic Band

Kyiv, 2022 to be performed by the combined PPHS Symphonic Band,
PPHS Concert Band, & the 8th Grade Band


Higher Love
by KYGO and Whitney Houston arranged by Joseph Cohn and Derek Lemons

Higher Love originally debuted in 1986 written and recorded by Steve Winwood. The song was so popular that in 1989, Whitney Houston recorded a cover of the song but it never went to post production and was never used. In 2019, an artist known at KYGO asked for permission from Whitney Houston’s estate to use the vocals and produce the cover.  Thus, a modern pop cover of the iconic song was created with the spectacular vocals of Whitney Houston.

(not) Alone
by Randall Standridge

Why I wrote (not) Alone:
Many who live with mental health conditions experience a profound sense of isolation. Discussing these issues and more so, identifying as someone who lives with them, has been extremely taboo in our society. Thus, many suffer in silence, facing their troubles with no support. But, as the title of the work implies, they are not alone.

I live with depression and anxiety. I have tried to use my platform to normalize discussions about mental health and to help start conversations about this issue. Here are some statistics you may or may not be aware of:
1 in 5 of adults in the US experience mental health issues each year.
1 in 6 youths in the US experience mental health issues each year.
90% of suicides worldwide are attributable to mental illness.
Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death in the United States.

With statistics like this, it is shocking and frustrating that so many people are reluctant to acknowledge, discuss, and address these issues.  In 2021, I was asked to create a work for wind ensemble addressing mental illness. The resultant work, “unBroken”, is one of my favorite works I have ever created, both from an aesthetic and personal perspective. However, this work is very advanced (Grade 5), which limits its demographic for performers and, thus, audiences. 

Those of us that teach or have taught middle school and high school know that there is a need to address this issue at younger ages, and to make such tools available to middle schools and developing high school ensembles. I decided to make this work a consortium, expecting there would be 20-30 schools that would support such a piece.  40 tops.  The consortium included over 300 schools.

This is an issue whose time has come. The time is now. We need to talk about this, and we are going to talk about this. We are going to show them all that they are not alone. 

Kyiv, 2022
by Brian Balmages

Moscow, 1941 is a piece that was written 16 years ago by Mr. Brian Balmages.   It is Based on the famous Russian song Meadowlands, this work also uses original material to tell the story of the Red Army successfully defending Moscow against the German invasion in the Second World War.

Kyiv, 2022 was written in Late March by Mr. Brian Balmages,  we are incredibly lucky to be one of 30 High schools who have the ability to perform this piece before it is officially published.  Written as a powerful sequel to Moscow, 1941, this work changes the narrative, where the theme from Moscow now represents the aggressor, and the heroic people of Ukraine are represented by the Ukrainian National Anthem and the powerful song Prayer for Ukraine.   Mr. Balmages has pledged to donate all proceeds from current and future orders of this piece and I am excited to announce that he has raised over $70,000 in proceeds thus far and will be donating it all to the humanitarian effort in Ukraine.

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