Morning Music for brass quintet




David Sampson (b. 1951)

Composer Information

David Sampson is an American composer that  makes his teaching, performing, and composing career in New York. Sampson has rapidly established himself as one of the outstanding composers of his generation.  He holds degrees from the Curtis Institute of Music, Hunter College, Manhattan School of Music and the Ecoles d'Art Américaines, where his teachers included Karel Husa, Henri Dutilleux and John Corigliano for composition, and Gerard Schwarz, Gilbert Johnson, Robert Nagel and Raymond Mase for trumpet. His choral, orchestral, solo and chamber ensemble works are performed and recorded regularly around the world by celebrated soloists, ensembles and orchestras. He belongs to a small group of contemporary composers who have followed an autonomous path to success, recognition and, most importantly, the admiration and respect of the musicians performing and championing their work. Currently he is currently Director of Music at the Brookside Community Church in Brookside, New Jersey and a member of the music department at Randolph Middle and High Schools in Randolph, New Jersey.



The Brass Press by Editions BIM





Ranking Position



Chesapeake - The Music of David Sampson by American Brass Quintet: Summit records, 2014.

New American Brass by American Brass Quintet: Summit Records, 1992.

Types of Instruments/Mutes

2 Bb trumpet/flugelhorn, horn, trombone, bass trombone or tuba. Trumpets require straight and cup mutes. Horn part also needs a mute. The tenor trombone uses both straight and cup mutes and the bass trombone require a cup mute.


Final Considerations

David Sampson’s Morning Music for brass quintet was written for the American Brass Quintet. This work is follow-on to ”In Memoriam W. E. S.,” a 1981 wind quintet Mr. Sampson composed in memory of his brother William. The composer says:  “This s a sequel to a previous work of mine titled In Memorium: W.E.S. The subject of that piece was the murder of my brother by the Klu Klux Klan and the American Nazis in 1979. Morning Music deals with my thoughts and feelings seven years later. As you will hear, the anguish over the death is as intense as ever, but a certain sense of strength and hope will emerge from these ashes. There is even beauty. The work is in one movement with several clearly delineated sections, ending with a fast paced coda. I dedicated this work to my mother, certainly the strongest individual I have ever known.”


Morning Music is a neo-romantic atonal work, highly emotional and moving. Sampson's quintet was written as a one-movement piece with five main sections followed by a coda. It contains a wide variety of meters changes, but in most cases the eighth note remains constant. Stopped horn and one flutter-tongued note in the trumpet and horn parts are also employed in this composition.