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Ruffles and Flourishes

0707flourishes.jpgWe apologize for the lack of entries recently but we’ve been hard at work on the next World Almanac and Book of Facts. I was recently reviewing the Military Affairs section where, in between the lists for chief commanding officers and number of personnel on active duty, we cover personal salutes and honors (page 129 in the 2007 edition). This includes what song is to be played for dignitaries and how many ruffles and flourishes should be performed beforehand.

Don’t know what a ruffle or flourish is? Those are the drum rolls (ruffles) and horns (flourishes) heard before the song begins. The more important the person, the more ruffles and flourishes. You can hear the maximum amount, four, before the President’s anthem, “Hail to the Chief.”

Perhaps you know about ruffles and flourishes, but can you hum some of the other honor songs like “General’s March” or “Flag Officer's March” played for generals and admirals? The U.S. Air Force Band has a comprehensive list of songs that includes honor music—with ruffles and flourishes—on their ceremonial music page.

U.S. Air Force Band: Ceremonial Music

Photo of band at Hunter Army Airfield from whitehouse.gov

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 19, 2007 2:27 PM.

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