Flight of Locomotive 4449
Racing piano score with sound effects of locomotive 4449. Great for the train buff in your family. / CLICK HERE to learn more!
I was inspired to write this piano score back in April of 1978. My brother and my dad were big train buffs when I was growing up. We use to live in a house in Alhambra, we affectionately called “the big house” which had a spanish style roof and was off white on the outside with a large pine tree in the front, but no backyard, except a garage out back near the home. We did have a large german shepard named Star of Sheaba, who loved all of us to death. There was a small space of dirt between the house and the garage where my dad built a high structure made of two by fours, with a hindged door, to keep the dog in that area when no one was home. My dad loved working with his hands. This was one of his creative outlets when he wasn’t at work, as a claims adjuster for Constitution Life Insurance back then, which later become Certified Life Insurance Company as we got older. My mother’s creative outlet was in her fascination for cooking and creating original recipies.
We weren’t rich and so my dad had bought a table saw to build whatever we needed in the home all through the years. I still have that old saw in good working order in the garage these days. I suppose one day I’ll get around to selling it. He had kept from taking his final vows as a Catholic priest, after prayer one day, realizing God was calling him to father a family which is how I and my brother got born finally.
In the back bedroom, next to our parents room, was a Lionel train board, lifted up on A-frames where my dad had the Lionel trains he had bought over the years. They were set up on a train board he had made. I was never sure why both of them were so taken by such a fascination for trains, but then again, they could never understand my fascination for wanting to be a composer, musician, an actor, motion picture producer and director. I also loved all the sciences and I especially loved electronics. My boyhood hero was Astroboy. I suppose if I could have built the Astroboy body and transferred me as a soul from my current body into Astroboy’s body, I would have done it too. I loved all that Astroboy represented. He was kind, loving, fair, had great super powers and he could fly!
I suppose my father and brother loved the romance and freedom the train brought to the traveler or perhaps it was the power behind those engines. Makes me think of Tim Allens “Tool Time” where Tim was always crying out for “more POWER!” which always ended with him getting hurt or destroying something on the studio set which was always good for laughs.
One day, in honor of my father and brother’s love for trains, I wrote this piano score, which I must say is a lot of fun to play on the piano/forte…well, that’s what the piano was called in the 17th Century which is a time period I love. I would have been about 22 years old when this was completed, I had been formally studying music since age 18. Not bad after 6 years of constant study and desire to learn. Think what I would have been if my mother had granted my request for piano lessons at age 5? But we were a poor struggling middle class family and we weren’t rich enough to afford lessons or a piano. At least the piano came at age 10, but you don’t get much done living in apartments. The volume level was only keeping the neighbors complaining when I needed time to practice or tried to practice. My mother thought I had lost interest in the music, but in truth I got tired of her telling me the neighbors were complaining when all I wanted to do was study and play. My dad perferred to be in a house but my mother grew up living in apartments all her life. Because he loved her, he gave her what she desired until she lost it and broke up the family eventually. I was taking beatings as an abused child since the crib too which messed up my childhood pretty badly.
However, I love the 17th Century, not because of the poverty of the time, but because the clothes were fabulous to wear. In fact, while attending a family Halloween party one year, I was able to wear a costume my brother and dad paid for which had the powdered wig and the garb of the day. It felt great to wear it all too, once I could figure out how to put it all on. I also had this scarf which had the piano keyboard on it, something they didn’t have back in the 17th century. I was dressed to kill, but only if you were the type that was attracted to the 17th century form of dress mind you.
Anyway, I used a photo taken on our front lawn, for my album cover for the piece I wrote entitled “Fur Elise’s Wild Party” which you can find on my CDbaby artist page, as well as the write up on the idea I had in mind for a live theater performance.
Included with this are the sounds of the actual 4449 engine recorded many decades ago. So if you are a train buff, I hope you love my simple engineering of just the piano score and the stereo sound effects to bring the whole thing to life. The sound effects are in the public domain these days, but my score is under formal copyright protection.
You can play this in the background with your train set going, if you are into trains. My dad sure was, before cancer took him in 1993. He had quite a spread of HO trains in his hobby room when he retired and before he died which he worked on when his health would allow, with me as his caregiver watching over him during the years before he finally passed.
So, purchase a ticket to get your own copy of this wonderful instrumental and board the 4449 express, as I fly you down the tracks, through my music and keyboard, to your ultimate destination, where ever your imagination wants to take you!
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© Kevin F. Montague – Bluefire Music Enterprises 1978 – 2012
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