Gordon Jacob

His full name was (rather splendidly!) Gordon Percival Septimus Jacob, but the New Groves puts the ‘Percival Septimus’ names in brackets, indicating their optionality. They are accordingly dispensed with when cataloguing the man’s work. He was born in 1895 and died in 1988, learning composition in a German prisoner-of-war camp during the First World War, from a harmony textbook. He went on to teach composition at the Royal College of Music from 1924 to his retirement in 1966. He died in 1984, aged 88.

When not teaching, he composed an enormous amount of music (some 700 compositions are usually mentioned), including numerous concerti, two symphonies and a ballet. His trumpet-abundant arrangement of the National Anthem was played at the coronation of Elizabeth II.

I don’t think anyone would mistake his music for something particularly ‘great’ or profoundly original, but it’s tonal and genially enjoyable. He has an ‘official’ website at https://www.gordonjacob.net/ -though it doesn’t exactly look very modern or kept up-to-date: it’s last update would seem to have taken place in 2007. This may not be an issue, given that its creation post-dated his death!


Back to the Music Listings


Music Plays from my collection
(since January 9th 2021)

Date of PlayTime of PlayGenreCompositionLength
Date of PlayTime of PlayGenreCompositionLength