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SOUTHERN COMFORTS Violin Concerto for Chamber Winds by JOEL PUCKETT (USA,1977)

[#40] April 27, 2020

2008 | Violin and Chamber winds | Grade 5 | 15’- 20’ | Concerto

Joel Puckett

Joel Puckett’s Southern Comforts is our Composition of the Week.

Southern Comforts is a violin concerto with orchestral winds and percussion.

The concerto has a length of about 16 minutes and it was completed in October 2008 for a consortium of collegiate American wind ensembles organized by Robert Ambrose of Georgia State University.

Puckett calls for an ensemble of 15 players:

2222/1110.Doublebass.Piano.Percussion (2)

Southern Comforts is cast in four movements:

I. Faulkner

II. Ritual: Football and The Lord

III. Lamentation

IV. Mint Julep

They are an evocation of the composer’s nostalgy for his southern home in Atlanta. He tells us more about his feelings on the concerto’s program notes:

“Home. I think about it constantly. I haven’t spent more than a week in the South in more than seven years and yet, I know it will always be home. Sometimes it’s a phone call from mom or a card from my sister. Sometimes it’s the faint smell of a dogwood or an Atlanta Braves box score in the paper. No, I haven’t really been there in years but I think about it daily. In Southern Comforts I am sharing some of the things that were important to me growing up in Atlanta or have become important in trying to remember home. Each movement is my representation of a memory or item from my childhood in the south”.


Other remarkable works for Wind Ensemble by Joel Puckett are:

The Shadow of Sirius (flute concerto)

That secret from the river (Adagio Sympohony)

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