Harriman’s Music and Melons tradition continues this weekend

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This year’s version of Harriman’s Music and Melons summertime tradition will start at 7 p.m. Aug. 24 at Harriman Riverfront Park.

Harriman Lions Club will provide free watermelons to be served to the audience and Babahatchie Community Band musicians, which will provide the musical part of the program.

“We have a Latin theme with the music this concert,” said Babahatchie member Alison West-

“After ‘The Star-Spangled Banner,’ we will go into the ‘New Mexico March’ by the March King, John Philip Sousa.”

Westrich said the march is one of Sousa’s lesser-known numbers. It will start a Babahatchie theme of playing more little-known Sousa marches in future performances.

“The Peanut Vender” by Moises Simons, arranged by John Moss, will follow. Westrich described Simons as a leading Cuban composer, pianist and orchestra leader in the early 20th century, and the number has been considered the most famous piece of music by a Cuban musician.

“Next is ‘Fiesta Tropicale’,” Westrich said. “It's a medley of several songs. It includes ‘Oye Como Va’, ‘Quando, Quando, Quando’, ‘El Cumbanchero’ and ‘Brazil’.”

That performance leads into “Malaguena” by Ernesto Lecuona, whom Westrich said was a prolific Cuban composer who wrote more than 600 pieces and a pianist of exceptional skill.

“Tijuana Brass in Concert,” arranged by Ted Ricketts, will include “Spanish Flea”, “Whipped Cream”, “The Lonely Bull” and “Tijuana Taxi”.

Jaime Texidor’s “Amparito Roca,” described by Westrich as “a fast-paced Spanish march,” will be the concert finale.

Texidor, a Spanish composer who penned more than 500
works, wrote his most famous composition, “Amparito Roca”, in 1925.

“I’ve also noticed another theme in this lineup,” Westrich said. “All the composers were born in the late 1800s, and these compositions were written in the early 1900s.”