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The symphonie opens upon the wide and boundless plains, in longitude 1150 W., latitude 35° 21' 0311 N., and about sixty miles from the west bank of Pitt River. These data are beautifully and clearly expressed by a long (topographically) drawn note from an E flat clarionet.
The sandy nature of the soil, sparsely dotted with bunches of cactus and artemisia, the extended view, flat and unbroken to the horizon, save by the rising smoke in the extreme verge, denoting the vicinity of a Pi Utah village, are represented by the bass drum. A few notes on the piccolo, calls the attention to a solitary antelope, picking up mescal beans in the foreground. The sun having an altitude of 36° 27', blazes down upon the scene in indescribable majesty. “Gradually the sounds roll forth in a song” of rejoicing to the God of Day
“Of thy intensity
Now then we sing ;
Which swells out into “ Hey Jim along, Jim along Josey, then decrescendo, mas o menos, poco pocita, dies away and
Suddenly we hear approaching a train from Pike County, consisting of seven families, with forty-six wagons, each drawn by thirteen oxen ; each family consists of a man in butternut-colored clothing driving the oxen; a wife in butternut-colored clothing riding in the wagón, holding a butternut baby, and seventeen butternut children running promiscuously about the establishment; all are barefooted, dusty, and smell unpleasantly- (All these circumstances are expressed by pretty rapid fiddling for some minutes, winding up with a puff from the orpheclide, played by an intoxicated Teuton with an atrocious breath-it is impossible to misunderstand the description.) Now rises o'er the plains in mellifluous accents, the grand Pike County Chorus.
“Oh we'll soon be thar
Gee up Bolly! whoo, up, whoo haw!
The train now encamp. The unpacking of the kettles and mess-pans, the unyoking of the oxen, the gathering about the various camp-fires, the frizzling of the pork, are so clearly expressed by the music, that the most untutored savage could readily comprehend it. Indeed, so vivid and lifelike was the representation, that a lady sitting near us, involuntarily exclaimed aloud, at a certain passage, « Thar, that pork's burning!" and it was truly interesting to watch the gratified expression of her face when, by a few notes of the guitar, the pan was removed from the fire, and the blazing pork extinguished.
This is followed by the beautiful aria :
“O! marm, I want a pancake! ”
Followed by that touching recitative :
“ Shet up, or I will spank you !"
To which succeeds a grand crescendo movement, representing the flight of the child, with the pancake, the pursuit of the mother, and the final arrest and summary punishment of the former, represented by the rapid and successive strokes of the castanet.
The turning in for the night follows; and the deep and stertorous breathing of the encampment, is well given by the bassoon, while the sufferings and trials of an unhappy father with an unpleasant infant, are touchingly set forth by the cornet à piston.
Part Second-The night attack of the Pi Utahs; the fearful cries of the demoniac Indians; the shrieks of the females and children; the rapid and effective fire of the rifles; the stampede of the oxen; their recovery and the final repulse; the Pi Utahs being routed after a loss of thirty-six killed and wounded, while the Pikes lose but one scalp (from an old fellow who wore a wig, and lost it in the scuffle), are faithfully given, and excite the most intense interest in the minds of the hearers; the emotions of fear, admiration and delight, succeeding each other in their minds, with almost painful rapidity. Then follows the grand chorus:
“Oh! we gin them fits,
After which, we have the charming recitative of Herr Tuden Links, to the infant, which is really one of the most charming gems in the performance:
« Now, dern your skin, can't you be easy?”
Morning succeeds. The sun rises magnificently (octavo flute)-breakfast is eaten, in a rapid movement on three sharps; the oxen are caught and yoked up—with a small drum and triangle; the watches, purses, and other valuables of the conquered Pi Utahs, are stored away in a camp-kettle, to a small movement on the piccolo, and the train moves on, with the grand chorus ::
• We'll soon be thar,
Gee up Bolly! Whoo hup! whoo haw 1”
The whole concludes with the grand hymn and chorus :
“ When we die we'll go to Benton,
Whup! Whoo, haw!
Whup! Whoo, haw!
The immense expense attending the production of this magnificent work; the length of time required to prepare the chorus; the incredible number of instruments destroyed at each rehearsal, have hitherto prevented M. Tarbox from placing it before the American public, and it has remained for San Diego to show herself superior to her sister cities of
the Union, in musical taste and appreciation, and in high souled liberality, by patronizing this immortal prodigy, and enabling its author to bring it forth in accordance with his wishes and its capabilities. We trust every citizen of San Diego and Vallecetos will listen to it ére it is withdrawn; and if there yet lingers in San Francisco one spark of musical fervor, or a remnant of taste for pure harmony, we can only say that the Southerner sails from that place once a fortnight, and that the passage money is but forty-five dollars.