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WORKSONGS is a suite of 5 songs which are an extension of music by Luciano Berio based on traditional music. Working in this same vein, I orchestrated traditional songs originating in the US deep south.

In the Pines" (also known as Black Girl and "Where Did You Sleep Last Night?", is a traditional American folk song which dates back to at least the 1870s, and is believed to be Southern Appalachian in origin. 

No More my Lawd is a worksong recorded by Alan Lomax at a prison in Mississippi in the 40’s. 

It’s Alright Honey is a song sung by Mose (Clear Rock) Platt about a woman with a baby whose husband died, and someone else took her along with his own wife.

The haunting Sur le Bord de l’eau is originally sung by Blind Uncle Gaspard who was born just south of Marksville, Louisiana. The lyrics speak about the tragic loss of a ring and the death of a handsome young sailor.

I'm Going To Memphis was recorded by John Lomax in late 1947 at the Lambert Camp at the Mississippi State Penitentiary, better known as Parchman Farm. The lyrics say that when the prisoners get their parole, they will go to Memphis and watch the steam boats on the Levee.

About the Composer

Hailed many times by The New York City Jazz Record, Downbeat and Jazz Magazine as one of the trombonists and composers who count today, Samuel Blaser is a musician sensitive to the importance of simple melodic lines, and who seeks to widen the musical scope of his instrument while preserving the personal touch of his tone quality.

According to Jazziz "Blaser states his case as an organically broad-minded musician who finds no contradiction in blending his fascination with the blues - of the country, Southern and also jazz-related kind - and experimental, avant-garde thinking.'


Bb Clarinet
Percussion 1
Percussion 2
Soprano Vocal


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