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The Wreck Of The Hesperus

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Orchestration based on the poem by Longfellow, a soundtrack for a film not yet made..

I have include the poem in case you have not read it before, it may help you envision scenes as you listen...

Hope you like the effort..

© ShadowofNine
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It was the schooner Hesperus,
That sailed the wintery sea;
And the skipper had taken his little daughter,
To bear him company.

Blue were her eyes as the fairy flax,
Her cheeks like the dawn of day,
And her bosom white as the hawthorn buds,
That ope in the month of May.

The Skipper he stood beside the helm,
His pipe was in his mouth,
And he watched how the veering flaw did blow
The smoke now West, now South.

Then up and spake an old Sailor,
Had sailed the Spanish Main,
"I pray thee, put into yonder port,
for I fear a hurricane.

"Last night the moon had a golden ring,
And to-night no moon we see!"
The skipper, he blew whiff from his pipe,
And a scornful laugh laughed he.

Colder and louder blew the wind,
A gale from the Northeast,
The snow fell hissing in the brine,
And the billows frothed like yeast.

Down came the storm, and smote amain
The vessel in its strength;
She shuddered and paused, like a frighted steed,
Then leaped her cable's length.

"Come hither! come hither! my little daughter,
And do not tremble so;
For I can weather the roughest gale
That ever wind did blow."

He wrapped her warm in his seaman's coat
Against the stinging blast;
He cut a rope from a broken spar,
And bound her to the mast.

"O father! I hear the church bells ring,
Oh, say, what may it be?"
"Tis a fog-bell on a rock bound coast!" --
And he steered for the open sea.

"O father! I hear the sound of guns;
Oh, say, what may it be?"
Some ship in distress, that cannot live
In such an angry sea!"

"O father! I see a gleaming light.
Oh say, what may it be?"
But the father answered never a word,
A frozen corpse was he.

Lashed to the helm, all stiff and stark,
With his face turned to the skies,
The lantern gleamed through the gleaming snow
On his fixed and glassy eyes.

Then the maiden clasped her hands and prayed
That saved she might be;
And she thought of Christ, who stilled the wave,
On the Lake of Galilee.

And fast through the midnight dark and drear,
Through the whistling sleet and snow,
Like a sheeted ghost, the vessel swept
Tow'rds the reef of Norman's Woe.

And ever the fitful gusts between
A sound came from the land;
It was the sound of the trampling surf,
On the rocks and hard sea-sand.

The breakers were right beneath her bows,
She drifted a dreary wreck,
And a whooping billow swept the crew
Like icicles from her deck.

She struck where the white and fleecy waves
Looked soft as carded wool,
But the cruel rocks, they gored her side
Like the horns of an angry bull.

Her rattling shrouds, all sheathed in ice,
With the masts went by the board;
Like a vessel of glass, she stove and sank,
Ho! ho! the breakers roared!

At daybreak, on the bleak sea-beach,
A fisherman stood aghast,
To see the form of a maiden fair,
Lashed close to a drifting mast.

The salt sea was frozen on her breast,
The salt tears in her eyes;
And he saw her hair, like the brown sea-weed,
On the billows fall and rise.

Such was the wreck of the Hesperus,
In the midnight and the snow!
Christ save us all from a death like this,
On the reef of Norman's Woe!

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.


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Hits: 3352
Comments: 15
Fans: 12
Plays: 111
Downloads: 66

Uploaded: Feb 06, 2011 - 11:32:09 AM
Last Updated: Feb 06, 2011 - 11:36:46 AM Last Played: Jan 06, 2018 - 12:44:14 AM
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mrattue said 2575 days ago (February 6th, 2011)
Really impressive piece of music. Dramatic and convincing.

As a seafarer myself, a little too close for comfort!

Just as a point of interest, the opening deep notes are very reminiscent of the pitch and timbre of a ships whistle (or 'foghorn' as many a landlubber calls it!). It was an inescapable association. Even the length of the notes correspond to a 'prolonged blast' as i would understand it.

It is evident to me that a lot of work has gone into this piece, and you are rewarded by having created a really together and effective soundtrack.

It might have been nice to have something for the calm after the storm, albeit rather a sad calm?

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Little_Hooligan said 2575 days ago (February 6th, 2011)
Thanks for including the poem as if Longfellow could hear this accompaniment, I bet he'd be proud.. Masterful work, chilling to the bone.. Almost too real!!
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michaeljayklein said 2575 days ago (February 6th, 2011)
This was absolutely AMAZING (and I mean that in the truest sense of the word). Very enthralling and a remarkable score--I hardly know where to begin here so won't! Man I'm telling you, this is one of the greatest tracks you have ever created (of many other outstanding works). Bravo to you! Michael
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Moviz said 2575 days ago (February 6th, 2011)
This film has
got to be in 'surround vision' Dave to match the music..... whoah! Another wave just spilled on the deck..... fantastically exciting, regards M
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pinkyrv said 2575 days ago (February 6th, 2011)
This is wonderful, and I mean full of wonder. Reminds me of Stravinsky, I love the dynamics with the horns, the woodwinds offer accent, and the bowed double bass in the beginning.......tasty.
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tonestones said 2574 days ago (February 7th, 2011)
Dramatic piece
Love the dynamics. Thrilling arrangement. These samples are absolutely convincing. This really has a live orchestra sound. You did an unbelievably great job on this.
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Reggie_Pole said 2574 days ago (February 7th, 2011)
Only a top crew of movie-makers could do justice this incredible piece of music. Totally impressed.
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PaulaMunk said 2574 days ago (February 7th, 2011)
I had no idea that you could do something so awesome all by yourself. I just sighed and took at breath at the ending. I must have been holding my breath through the piece. Thank you for the poem and the music. My mother used to say, "It's like the wreck of the Hesperus when talking about a mess in the house." She must have been a fan of Longfellow. Thanks.
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WharmtonRise said 2573 days ago (February 8th, 2011)
Tremendous work. Evocative and compelling. Wonderful arrangement and orchestration.
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jiguma said 2573 days ago (February 8th, 2011)
just excellent!
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Corporal Beef said 2572 days ago (February 9th, 2011)
It Works!
Your orchestration is the perfect backdrop for this poem! This is akin to watching the Wizard of Oz while listening to Dark Side of The Moon (ha ha). What suspense you have created...and power. I'm really impressed. Thanks for posting.
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magnatone said 2571 days ago (February 10th, 2011)
The Wreck
this is outstanding dave - as i just said to you in chat, you are SO good at orchestrating! dynamic, dramatic and ding-danged excellent!
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Loob said 2571 days ago (February 10th, 2011)
What do you mean you are not into quality? This is Awesome!
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racerat said 2567 days ago (February 14th, 2011)
The Wreck of the Hesperus
Wonderful and awe inspiring. Thanks for including the poem. Made for a great read while listening to this tour de force! Impressive!
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ic42 said 2563 days ago (February 18th, 2011)
may I be Franke?
Excellent soundtrack-style bombast, eloquently catching the force of the stormy story in your orchestral sails. The introduction, with it's forceful dissonance, reminded me a bit of Christopher Franke (e.g. his scoring of the Babylon-5 series)... Anyway, compelling and appropriately sea-rolling music, wonderful samples, does indeed sound live.
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