King Band salutes Fort Dodge’s 150th birthday

The Karl L. King Municipal Band of Fort Dodge will continue the 2019 summer concert season at 7:30 p.m. today with a concert at the Karl L. King Band Shell in Oleson Park. There is no admission charge, courtesy of the city of Fort Dodge. In case of inclement weather, the concert may be canceled. Persons attending these band concerts are reminded to bring along their own lawn chairs or blanket. No seating is provided.

The Good Shepherd Lutheran Church Bell Choir will be selling homemade ice cream and fresh-baked cake before the concert, starting around 6:30 pm.

Conductor of the Karl L. King Municipal Band is Jerrold P. Jimmerson, and the assistant conductor is Dr. David Klee, with Paul Bloomquist as the announcer.

The concert opens with C.L. Barnhouse’s fine march, “Land of Plenty,” published in 1922, which introduced the “Iowa Corn Song.” Karl L. King’s march, “Hawkeye Fair” will follow. This fair, located in the area of the old Expo Pool grounds, was an important part of life in the early 1900’s here in Fort Dodge. King’s galop, “The Whippet Race,” commemorates the 40 years when the King Band was the featured musical group at the Iowa State Fair.

The mining of gypsum was also very important to this region. Karl King chose to highlight one of the greatest hoaxes of the 19th century when a block of local gypsum was quarried, shipped away, and eventually carved into the shape of a prehistoric man. King’s “Cardiff Giant March”commemorates this event.

Former Conductor Reginald R. Schive’s march, “The Fort Dodge Messenger,” pays tribute to the support of the local news media with events happening in this region. The trio of this unpublished march includes the Senior High school song, “Up Fort Dodgers.”

The music of local composers Dave Hearn and Shadric Smith will be represented with “The Old Iowa Waltz.” This song was premiered by the King Band at the Folk Life Festival in Washington D.C. in 1996 on the National Mall, when Iowa celebrated its sesquicentennial. It will be sung by Shari Netz, Manson. Netz will also lead the audience in a medley of songs titled the “Good Old Days Sing-Along.”

Dan Cassady, from Twin Lakes, local area musician and educator, will perform the classic trombone solo by Fred Harlow, titled “The Old Home Down on the Farm.”

The Des Moines River also played a big part in the development of this region. Another local composer, David Swenson from Boone, premiered a selection in 2016 titled “River Valley Rhapsody” that was inspired by a canoe trip through the Des Moines River Valley near Boone.

Music of the Old West is also included with Karl King’s “Western Sketches Suite,” featuring music from native Iowan, William “Buffalo Bill” Cody, which was used during his Wild West shows, along with Robert Russell Bennett’s “Suite of Old American Dances.”


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