The Circus Band
is dated 1894 and has words by Ives. One of his most famous songs, it enacts a boy’s excitement at a circus parade, with plenty of the participants out of step. It was originally a quickstep march for band or piano—the song version was made soon afterwards. In the 1930s Ives encouraged his copyist George F Roberts to make an orchestral version, which is often heard.
from notes by Calum MacDonald © 2008