Tuba Music by Howard J. Buss

Compositions and Arrangements
Grading Scale:
III-IV: Intermediate
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Tuba Music
Click on an instrumentation link, works are listed in alphabetical order within each category.
Durations are in parenthesis.

Solo Tuba, unaccompanied

Tuba and one other instrument

(various combinations, including works with piano, and with electronic recording)

Tuba and percussion ensemble

Tuba-Euphonium ensemble

Tuba and Band


Tuba and Orchestra

Tuba in chamber music: trios


Tuba in chamber music: quartets

Tuba in chamber music: quintets and larger (includes standard brass quintets, and brass choir)


Solo Tuba, unaccompanied

A DAY IN THE CITY “7 Vignettes” (1986) for solo tuba (or bass trombone) by Howard J. Buss. These colorful musical scenes from the city are excellent study and recital pieces. Each vignette depicts an experience the composer had one day during a visit to New York City. The movements are Another Sunrise, Off to a Busy Day, The Lost Key Episode, The Waitin' in Line Blues, Romantic Interlude, Sudden Storm and Out on the Town. "Tonal, charming and imaginative! The low purchase price and the incisive approach of a skilled composer make this a piece worth seeking out.”- PMEA News
(10’) Grade IV.
Score Sample: Excerpts.pdf

Sound Samples: Movement 2, Off to a Busy Day.mp3; Movement 3: The Lost Key Episode.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Tubaisms coverTUBAISMS for solo tuba by Howard J. Buss is in three short movements: From the Depths, Joviality, and Oompah! Each displays a variety of the unique characteristics of the tuba without using extended techniques or extreme range. Because of its modest technical demands, it is suitable for performance by advanced high school and college-level performers. (7’20”) Grade V.
Score sample: Excerpts.pdf

Sound samples: Movement 1.mp3; Movement 2.mp3; Movement 3.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tuba and one other instrument or recording (works in alphabetical order)   Top of Page

Alien Loop de Loops coverALIEN LOOP DE LOOPS for tuba (or euphonium) and electronic recording by Howard J. Buss is a capricious fantasy piece designed to appeal to a wide range of audiences. The title refers to both programmatic and technical elements in the composition. During the opening section the performer plays unaccompanied, but then is joined by the recording, which contains sounds generated by traditional instruments as well as an "alien" voice, the spacecraft, and electronic effects. Technically, the title refers to how the recording was made. It consists of numerous sound loops combined to form an imaginative sonic tapestry. Ossia suggestions are included for some of the more technical passages. The general tessitura of the work also allows it to be performed on a tuba. This work is also published in a version for trombone or bass trombone, which was winner of the 2015 American Trombone Workshop National Composition Competition sponsored by the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own.”
(6’47”) Grade V.
Sound samples (on euphonium): Excerpt 1.mp3,

Excerpt 2.mp3, Excerpt 3.mp3, Excerpt 4.mp3

Sound samples (on tuba): Excerpt 1.mp3, Excerpt 2.mp3,

Excerpt 3.mp3, Excerpt 4.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


 
BALLAD (2004) for tuba (or bass trombone) & piano by Howard J. Buss radiates a sensuous lyricism. It was commissioned by Jonathan Warburton and received its world premiere in 2004 in Manchester, England by him and Gilbert Cowlishaw on piano. The structure of the work is A-B-A-Coda, the A section is melodious, flowing, and expressive. The B section is more animated and has a playful nature. (6 ’10”) Grade IV-V.
Sound Samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3

score sample .pdf - View on YouTube

Music available fromCimarron Music Press



FOUR MINIATURES for trombone & tuba (or bass trombone) by Howard J. Buss is a vibrant sonatina in four movements: Aggressive, Contemplative, Buoyant, and Energetic. (9’20”)
Grade V. Score sample: Excerpts.pdf

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



ILLUMINATIONS (2001) for tuba (or bass trombone) & piano by Howard J. Buss was commissioned for Charles Vernon, bass trombonist with the Chicago Symphony, and the 30th Anniversary of the International Trombone Festival. It is in two movements: Reverie and Urban Lights. The first is lyrical and contemplative in nature, the second is a frolicking rondo influenced by jazz and, in one section, funk music.
(19’) Grade V. This work is also available in a version for tuba and band
Sound Samples:
Movement 1: Sample A.mp3; Sample B.mp3: Movement 2: Sample A.mp3; Sample B.mp3

Video on YouTube

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Interstellar cover INTERSTELLAR for horn, tuba and electronic recording by Howard J. Buss, in 3 movements, Reaching Beyond, Lonely and Turbulence, is part of a series of works by the composer inspired by space travel and exploration. The recording contains the sounds of traditional instruments, electronic effects, and actual sounds from space indexed on the NASA website.
(10’10”) Grade IV-V.
Sound samples: Movement 1: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3;

Movement 2: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3;

Movement 3: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3

(Click tracks for performance, if desired: Mvt 1.mp3, Mvt 2.mp3, Mvt 3.mp3)

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Award Winner! REFLECTIONS ON THE "LAST POST" for tuba and piano by Howard J. Buss was winner of the Composition Competition of the U.S. Army Band’s 2019 Tuba-Euphonium Workshop. This work was used for the performers’ competition at the 2020 Workshop. The winning tuba player will solo the tuba/band version of the Reflections on the “Last Post” with the U.S. Army Band (Pershing’s Own) on the gala concert that concludes the workshop. Inspired by The Last Post Ceremony in Ypres, Belgium, it honors the thousands of soldiers who died to free Belgium from the Germans in WWI. The Last Post Ceremony was first held on July 1, 1928 and has been performed every night since November 11, 1929. Reflections on the “Last Post” develops the “Last Post” bugle call, which is performed near the beginning of the ceremony. The work also has stirring sections signifying the youthfulness and vitality of those who fought and died on the Ypres battlefields.This work is also published in a version for tuba and band (or wind ensemble). (8'05") Grade V.

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



THREE JAZZICALS (2009) by Howard J. Buss is in 3 movements: To Bop or Not to Bop, Sounds from the Cool Smoke, and Hotish. The composer states, “ It was not my aim to create a specific hybrid style by synthesizing jazz and modern classical music; rather, my intent was to systematically strip away the fundamental elements of jazz to explore at what point the music ceases being jazz and becomes classical. The style is the resultant this procedure. It is understood that because the subject of what constitutes jazz (there are so many kinds) is so complex, depending upon the background and views of the listener, Three Jazzicals will sound jazzy (in varying degrees) to most, and mostly classical to some.” The instruments employed have been traditionally used in jazz. However, stripped away is the rhythm section; traditional chord progressions; melodic, rhythmic and formal clichés; and improvisation. Among the elements kept is the allowance for personal expression through each player’s tone, inflections, and articulations. (12’)  Grade V.   
- version for Bb clarinet & tuba,  Music available from Cimarron Music Press
Sound samples: Movement 1.mp3; Movement 2.mp3; Movement 3.mp3

- version for Bb soprano sax & tuba, Music available from Cimarron Music Press
Sound samples: Movement 1.mp3; Movement 2.mp3; Movement 3.mp3

- version for Bb trumpet & tuba, Music available from Cimarron Music Press
Sound samples: Movement 1.mp3; Movement 2.mp3; Movement 3.mp3



TIME CAPSULE (2002) for tenor trombone (or euphonium) & tuba by Howard J. Buss is a sonatina in 4 movements: Daybreak has a frolicking character. Chorale breaks with the traditional structure of the chorale in that each phrase gets a measure longer. Rendezvous, is in a lilting 6/8 and "works up a lather" as it progresses to an exciting climax. The final movement, Homeward Bound, begins with a fanfare-like passage that gives way to a spirited dance. (7’) Grade IV-V.

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



ZOOM (2011) for tuba (or bass trombone) & harp by Howard J. Buss was commissioned by Brandt Attema and Astrid Haring. It was inspired by the spectacular images as seen through a satellite camera as the composer zoomed in on the coastline of The Netherlands. The narrative quality of the music couples with soaring lyricism with crisp, energetic rhythms and colorful harmonies, making this work accessible to different types of audiences.
(10'30") Grade VI.
Sound samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3; Excerpt 4,mp3

View at ZOOM: YouTube Video

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tuba and percussion ensemble                                                                 Top of Page

AMERICAN PHOENIX (2001) for solo tuba (or bass trombone) and 4 percussion by Howard J. Buss was commissioned for Stefan Sanders and the 30th Anniversary of the International Trombone Assn. It was composed following the world events of September 11, 2001 and was premiered by Mr. Sanders and members of the University of North Texas Percussion Ensemble at the 2002 International Trombone Festival. This work is in 3 movements: In Remembrance 9/11/01, Repercussions, and Renewal. Percussion - Percussion 1: Xylophone, tubular bells (chimes), suspended cymbal, snare drum, police whistle, and bell tree; Percussion 2: Vibes, suspended cymbals, tom toms, bongos, and wood block; Percussion 3: Marimba, tam-tam, lion roar, ratchet, slapstick, wind chimes, and suspended cymbal; Percussion 4: Marimba (to low A), timpani, tambourine, cowbells, and suspended cymbal."Buss’ melodies vary. They are mystic, poignant, heroic, often modal, and at times reminiscent of folk songs. He writes for the percussion ensemble with mastery and features a wide range of instruments. The sound landscape is rich with many moods and timbres. American Phoenix is an powerful addition to a solo program or as a feature piece for a percussion recital. It is rewarding for both performer and audience.” - The I.T.A. Journal
(15’) Grade V.  Video on YouTube

Score Samples: Mvt. 1 In Remembrance 9/11/01.pdf;

Mvt. 2 Repercussions.pdf; Mvt. 3 Renewal.pdf

Sound Samples: Movement 1 (In Remembrance 9/11/01), Excerpt A.mp3; Excerpt B.mp3;

Movement 2 (Repercussions), Excerpt A.mp3; Excerpt B.mp3;

Movement 3 (Renewal), Excerpt A.mp3; Excerpt B.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tuba-Euphonium Ensemble:

Prayer_tubaPRAYER for 12-part tuba-euphonium ensemble by Howard J. Buss is a meditative work designed to be performed in a concert venue or as a musical offering in a house of worship. Its reverent quality is enhanced by the rich sonority and organ-like quality of the large low brass ensemble. The musical language is sophisticated, yet accessible to general audiences. It begins with a lyrical 12-tone melody that is symbolic of the Twelve Tribes of Israel. The dodecaphonic reference also relates to the instrumentation: In the concluding section, the 12 pitches of the opening melody are presented with each player assigned to one pitch. A reverent atmosphere permeates the musical tapestry throughout. Prayer is accessible to amateur and high school-level players.
(5’10”) Grade III-IV.
Sound sample: Excerpt.mp3 - Score sample: Excerpt.pdf

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tuba and Band (These works are also available in versions for tuba and piano - see above). 

ILLUMINATIONS for tuba (or bass trombone) and band by Howard J. Buss, originally for bass trombone (or tuba) and piano, was composed for Charles Vernon, bass trombonist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and the 30th Anniversary of the International Trombone Festival.   Illuminations is in 2 movements: Reverie, is contemplative and lyrical. Beautiful, expansive melodic lines are woven into a gentle, almost mystical, musical fabric. The second movement, Urban Lights, is an energetic rondo that is influenced by jazz, and in one section, funk music. “Thoughtful, tuneful, and rewarding to perform.” – ITA Journal (19’) Grade V-VI.
Sound samples: Movement 1 - Excerpt 1.mp3, Excerpt 2.mp3, Excerpt 3.mp3,


Movement 2 - Excerpt 1.mp3, Excerpt 2.mp3, Excerpt 3.mp3, Excerpt 4.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Reflections on the Last Post for tuba and band coverREFLECTIONS ON THE LAST POST for tuba and band (or wind ensemble) by Howard J. Buss was inspired by The Last Post Ceremony at the Menin Gate Memorial in Ypres, Belgium. It honors the thousands of soldiers who died to free Belgium from the Germans in WWI. The Last Post Ceremony was first held on July 1928 and has been performed every night since November 11, 1929 at the Menin Gate Memorial, except during the years of the German occupation of Ypres from May 20, 1940 to September 6, 1944. During the occupation the ceremony was continued at the Brookwood Military Cemetery in Surrey, England. The composition develops the “Last Post” bugle call, which is performed near the beginning of the ceremony. The work also has stirring sections signifying the youthfulness and vitality of those who fought and died on the Ypres battlefields. This work was winner of the Composition Competition of the U.S. Army Band’s 2019 Tuba-Euphonium Workshop and was used for the workshop’s 2020 performers’ Competition.
(8’) Grade V.
Sound samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3; Excerpt 4.mp3 - Video

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tuba in chamber music - trios   (works in alphabetical order, durations in parenthesis

Concertante coverNew! CONCERTANTE for trombone, tuba and piano by Howard J. Buss is dedicated to trombonist Tom Brantley and tubaist Joseph Alvarez. In this one-movement composition the trombone and tuba are treated as equal partners as they traverse a wide variety of sonic atmospheres. Energetic and sometimes fiery sections surround a beautiful and lyrical central part.
(8’40”) Grade V. Score Sample: Excerpt.pdf

Sound Samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Concertante for euphonium, tuba and pianoCONCERTANTE for euphonium, tuba and piano by Howard J. Buss. In this one movement composition the euphonium and tuba are treated as equal partners as they traverse a wide variety of sonic atmospheres. Energetic and sometimes fiery sections surround a beautiful and lyrical central part.
(9’) Grade V.

Sound samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3; Excerpt 4.mp3

This work is also published in a version for euphonium, tuba, and orchestra.

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



EMANATIONS 2 euphoniums and drum setEMANATIONS for two euphoniums (or euphonium & tuba) and drum set by Howard J. Buss is in 3 movements: Variegated Anticipation, Serenity and Faceted Radiance. It is dedicated to Patrick Nyren and was premiered by him and Chris Kaltenbach on euphonium, and Michael Serbantez on percussion in 2016 at New Mexico State University. The second euphonium part is easily played on a tuba. The percussionist uses a standard drum set. (17’) Grade V.
Sound Samples: Movement 1.mp3; Movement 2.mp3; Movement 3.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Interstellar cover INTERSTELLAR for horn, tuba and electronic recording by Howard J. Buss, in 3 movements, Reaching Beyond, Lonely and Turbulence, is part of a series of works by the composer inspired by space travel and exploration. The recording contains the sounds of traditional instruments, electronic effects, and actual sounds from space indexed on the NASA website.
(10’10”) Grade IV-V. B458
Sound samples: Movement 1: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Movement 2: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3;

Movement 3: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3

(Click tracks for performance, if desired: Mvt 1.mp3, Mvt 2.mp3, Mvt 3.mp3)

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Jazzical #5 coverJAZZICAL #5 for euphonium, tuba, and piano by Howard J. Buss, was written for Gail Robertson and Stacy Baker for ITEC 2016. This engaging work juxtaposes technical and spiritual elements of jazz and classical music.
(7’30”) Grade V.
Sound Samples: Excerpt_1.mp3, Excerpt_2.mp3, Excerpt_3.mp3

Video on YouTube

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



Trigon coverNew Edition! TRIGON (1989, revised in 2021) for trumpet, trombone & tuba by Howard J. Buss. This energetic piece is characterized by lyrical passages juxtaposed with aggressive, angular sections. All 3 players have substantial solo lines in this exciting tour de force. (9’30") Grade V. Score sample.pdf

Sound samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tuba in chamber music - quartet             Top of Page

JAZZICAL #4 (2012) for horn, trombone, tuba & piano by Howard J. Buss . The composer states,  “It was not my aim to create a specific hybrid style by synthesizing jazz and modern classical music; rather, my intent was to systematically strip away the fundamental elements of jazz to explore at what point the music ceases being jazz and becomes classical. The style of this work is the resultant this procedure. Because the subject of what constitutes jazz (there are so many kinds) is so complex, depending upon the background and views of the listener, the music will sound jazzy (in varying degrees) to most, and mostly classical to others. (12’45”) Grade V.
Sound Samples: Excerpt_1.mp3; Excerpt_2.mp3; Excerpt_3.mp3; Excerpt_4.mp3

Score Sample: Excerpt.pdf

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tuba in chamber music - quintets and larger (works in alphabetical order) Top of Page

Brass Miniatures coverBRASS MINIATURES for brass quintet by Howard J. Buss is in 4 movements inspired by light and images reflected on polished brass: On the Edge, Refractions, Facets, and Illuminated Reflections. In 2018 the composer found a box labeled “1974” in a storage closet. It contained a collection of long-lost scores he had composed 4½ decades earlier. It was apparent that in these works was a trove of youthful musical ideas that could be developed, polished, and edited into exciting “new” compositions. The musical content of first 3 movements of is close to that in the 1974 brass quintet. The final movement was rewritten to include elements of the original score, but updated to be closer to the composer’s current musical language. While On the Edge, Refractions, and Facets, have an edginess to them; Illuminated Reflections is more consonant and lyrical. It includes references to material in the previous movements as well a buffed rendition of the opening melody of the first movement in its coda.
(7’22”) Grade V.
Sound samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3; Excerpt 4.mp3

- Score sample: Excerpts.pdf

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



BROM BONES for 10-part brass choir by Howard J. Buss musically depicts the character and exploits of Washington Irving’s dashing prankster in The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. The ensemble consists of 4 Bb trumpets (an optional Eb part is included for  trumpet 1), one horn, 3 tenor trombones, one bass trombone, and tuba. It is in five movements: Overture, The Smoke Out, The Schoolhouse Caper, Ichabod’s Romance and Night Encounter.         
Following the energetic and heroic Overture, in The Smoke Out tone clusters represent the buildup of smoke in Ichabod’s singing school. Chorale-like passages suggest the music of the singers in training. The third movement, The Schoolhouse Caper, combines very aggressive and topsy-turvy passages with humorous, plodding interjections. Ichabod’s Romance begins as a beautiful unaccompanied ballad which is abruptly disturbed by a cacophony of muted brass, suggesting the whining of Brom’s mocking dog. The intense finale, Night Encounter, depicts Ichabod’s frightening and fateful run-in with the Headless Horseman, suspected by some to be Brom Bones in disguise. (14’30”) Grade V-VI. - Video
on YouTube

Sound samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3; Excerpt 3.mp3; Excerpt 4.mp3

Score sample: Excerpts.pdf

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



CHROMATIC FANTASY (1997) for brass quintet by Howard J. Buss was composed for the United States Air Force Brass Quintet. This “tour de force” is a riveting excursion through driving ostinati and sparkling chromatic flourishes. Chromatic Fantasy was premiered by the U.S.A.F. Brass Quintet at the Eastern Trombone Workshop hosted by the U.S. Army Band.
(8’) Grade V.
Sound Excerpts: Sample 1.mp3; Sample 2.mp3; Sample 3.mp3 - Score sample: Excerpt.pdf

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



CONCORD (1990) for brass quintet by Howard J. Buss teems with the vitality of youth. Lyrical passages are juxtaposed with fanfare-like sections to create a dramatic and festive atmosphere. Written for the opening of a performing arts high school in Florida, this exciting composition was winner of the 1991 “Erik Satie Mostly Tonal Award.” This makes a great contest piece or rousing feature number. (6’) Grade V.
Sound Excerpts: Sample 1.mp3; Sample 2.mp3; Sample 3.mp3

Score sample: Excerpt.pdf
   -   Video on YouTube

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



FLOURISHES for two brass quintets by Howard J. Buss. Antiphonal brass quintets face off in this dramatic showpiece that culminates in a dazzling climax. A conductor is suggested. (9') Grade V-VI.

Order from  Subito Music.



SONATA K. 380 by Scarlatti, Domenico for brass quintet, transcribed by Howard J. Buss was originally composed for keyboard by Domenico Scarlatti around the year 1754 and was titled Sonata in E Major K. 380 (Longo 23). This transcription for brass quintet preserves the essential traits of the composer’s unique style, including his compositional use of register with florid treble parts and a strictly functional, supportive bass. (6’30”) Grade IV.

Music available from Cimarron Music Press



SONIC FABLES: “Lessons from Aesop” (1991) for brass quintet & one percussion by Howard J. Buss. Entertaining musical representations of 6 of Aesop’s famous fables are presented between a Prelude and Postlude. The text of the fables is printed in the score and may be used as program notes or may be recited prior to performing the accompanying movement. Because of the programmatic subject matter and the colorful spirit of the music, Sonic Fables works well with all types of audiences, including those of children. It is frequently performed as a feature number on school programs. Percussion: suspended cymbals, temple blocks, snare drum, tomtom, triangle, tambourine, wind chimes, xylophone, and tam-tam. The total duration is about 17 minutes; however, the 8 movements may be performed in smaller groupings.
(18’) Grade V-VI.
Sound Excerpts: Prelude.mp3;

The Hawk and the Nightingale.mp3;

The Middle-Aged Man and His Two Mistresses.mp3;

The Cat and the Rooster.mp3;

The PipingFisherman.mp3;

The Fox and the Leopard.mp3;

The Lion and the Bear.mp3; Postlude.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


Tribute To  Stephen Foster coverNew! TRIBUTE TO STEPHEN FOSTER “A Medley of Six Favorites” arranged for brass quintet by Howard J. Buss. Stephen Collins Foster (1826-1864) is often referred to as “the father of American music.” Many of his songs serve as a window into the spirit of America in his day. Others are exquisitely sentimental. Whether or not one approves of the lyrics of his minstrel songs, the enduring beauty and vitality of his melodies cannot be denied. In addition to the 6 Foster songs in this arrangement, Buss interjects 2 other well-known melodies. The “First Call” bugle call is woven into the tapestry of Camptown Races” and “The Girl I Left Behind Me” serves as a partner song to “Ring, Ring, the Banjo.”
I. “Old Black Joe”  (2’)
II. “Camptown Races” (1’40”)
III. “Beautiful Dreamer”  (2’15”)
IV. “Old Folks at Home” also known as “Swanee River” (2’12”)
V. “Ring, Ring the Banjo” – “Oh, Susannah!”  (2’41”)
The total duration is about 11’ without pauses between the movements.
Grade V.
Score sample: Excerpts.pdf;

Sound Samples: Excerpt 1.mp3; Excerpt 2.mp3;

Excerpt 3.mp3; Excerpt 4.mp3; Excerpt 5.mp3

Music available from Cimarron Music Press


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Howard J. Buss, Composer       

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Tuba sheet music, graded catalog of sheet music.

Product description: Tuba sheet music: solos, duos, chamber music, brass quintets, brass choir, tuba with percussion ensemble, tuba and piano, tuba and harp, euphonium and tuba duets.