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A Finland Suite

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Programme notes by the composer.

1. Teppo Tiempo - It is hoped the bassist will embrace the abrupt changes of temperament and disposition presented in this short little composition: A somewhat plaintive lament, freely stated in the first eight measures of the piece, quickly gives way to an assertive driving eighth note figure. Bits of this more insistent figure soon combine with fragments of the opening melody to suggest a change of heart, a more adamant disposition. The work closes rather forcefully as an unsympathetic and uncompromising resolution is reached.
Teppo Tiempo was premiered at the Bristol Bass Club (Bristol, UK) on Wednesday 20 May 2015 by Ben Groenevelt.

2. Helsinki (Daughter of the Baltic) - Helsinki is situated on the Gulf of Finland, 190 miles west of St. Petersburg, Russia. Its residents enjoy mild summers with days of almost 24 hours of sunlight. The city's average high temperature during the month of January, however, is just 29°F, and the total daylight for that entire month averages only 38 hours. It is these long cold and dark winter days that are depicted in this episode.
Helsinki was premiered on Wednesday 24 June 2015 at the Bristol BASS CLUB (Bristol Plays Music, Bristol, UK) by Peter McLoughlin.

3. Sveaborg (Helsinki's Fortress on the Sea) - t was the ongoing wars with Russia in the early 1700s that prompted the Swedish parliament in 1747 to build a sea fortress on the Susiluodot islands just off the coast of Helsinki. Spanning six islands, it was renamed Suomenlinna (Castle of Finland) by the Finns in 1918, but the fortress was initially given the name "Sveaborg". An opening motive affirms the confidence of an impregnable fortress, interrupted only briefly by a dolce phrase expressing perhaps the solitude of a lonely night watch before the opening idea returns.
Sveaborg was premiered on Wednesday 24 June 2015 at the Bristol BASS CLUB (Bristol Plays Music, Bristol, UK) by David Heyes.

4. The Icebreakers - Each winter much of the Baltic Sea ices over, and the Gulf of Finland itself freezes in late January, rarely thawing before late April. During this time the Port of Helsinki cannot be accessed without the aid of the icebreakers, great vessels whose hulls have been reinforced to smash through frozen waters. Their steadfast, resolute movement forward is here represented by an unrelenting progression of quarter notes.
The Ice Breakers was premiered on Wednesday 24 June 2015 at the Bristol BASS CLUB (Bristol Plays Music, Bristol, UK) by Alex Pearson.

5. The Baltic Sea - The basin that is today the Baltic Sea was shaped as an ancient river valley was gouged out by glaciers during the last ice age. Its brackish waters are produced as rivers and streams of the surrounding countryside drain into the Gulf of Finland and Gulf of Bothnia to mix with the salty water of the North East Atlantic. The opening harmonics are meant to recreate an image of icy rain lashing down as it is driven by the winds whipping across the cold, open sea, and the double stops to portray the crashing of the waves.
The Baltic Sea was premiered on Wednesday 24 June 2015 at the Bristol BASS CLUB (Bristol Plays Music, Bristol, UK) by Jim Rintoul.

Double bassist Michael Montgomery, a student of Robert Rohe and Lucas Drew, has a Doctor of Musical Arts degree, played in the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra for many years, and now lives in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas, where he teaches at the University of Arkansas Fayetteville and the Suzuki Music School of Arkansas. His articles have been published in American Suzuki Journal, Bass World, and Pastoral Music.


  • 1. Teppo Tiempo
  • 2. Helsinki (Daughter of the Baltic)
  • 3. Sveaborg (Helsinki's Fortress on the Sea)
  • 4. The Icebreakers
  • 5. The Baltic Sea

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Cat No. RM795
Supplier Code RM795
Price £7.50
ComposerMichael Montgomery
CategoryDouble Bass Solo
PublisherRecital Music
Difficulty level6 - 8
ISMN 979-0-57045-795-3
EAN-13 9790570457953
Weight 100 grams
Published 23rd July 2015
Availability 7 in stock
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