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Sousa Archives and Center for American Music, 1103 S. Sixth Street, Champaign
Sousa Archives and Center for American Music
Of the 1,770 commercial sound recordings that were made of Sousa’s civilian band between 1892 and 1932, only eight were conducted by the “March King.” Two additional recordings of the Philadelphia Rapid Transit Company Band playing “March of the Mitten Men” (later entitled “Power and Glory”) and “The Thunder” were also recorded with Sousa at the podium. While Sousa had a general aversion to most forms of mechanically reproduced music, he did not prohibit his band’s musicians from being recorded and many established reputations as recording artists and studio conductors. In addition, Sousa’s Band played a significant role in the rapid development of the Victor Talking Machine Company under the direction of Arthur Pryor. Pryor played solo trombone for the band and served as one of Sousa’s assistant conductors. This exhibit explores Pryor’s 1912 Victor recording sessions and his impact on America’s early twentieth-century audio recordings.