Michael's Music Service

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William Selby (1738–1798)

A Fuge or Voluntary Back

William Selby, born in England, was one of the first composers to emigrate to America and was organist at King's Chapel, Boston. This fugue, as it's now spelled, is also a voluntary, an English term for an instrumental piece of church service music.


Prelude in C Major Back

Born in England, Selby emigrated to America and was organist at King’s Chapel in Boston at the time of the Revolutionary war. Besides being organist, he was an "all purpose" musician in the area as well as a composer. Just like today, he needed a "day job" to make ends meet, so he worked as a grocer and purveyor of spirits. Prelude in C is in the English style that Selby would have encountered in his youth. This lively composition is mostly in two parts, single lines for the left and right hands.