James Barnes received his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the University of Kansas and served as teacher, staff composer, arranger and Associate Director of Bands at his alma mater for 27 years. Recipient of numerous ASCAP and other awards, he is considered a major figure in the world of original composition for band and wind ensemble. He has traveled extensively as a guest composer, conductor and lecturer throughout the US, Europe, Australia, Japan and Taiwan. Impressions of Japan was commissioned by the Saitama Sakae High School Band of Ohmiya, Japan, and completed in 1992. It is a tone poem expressing the composer's personal portrayal of his experiences during visits to Japan. The first movement begins with short notes depicting the tiny beams of light from the starry sky that precede the first rays of sunlight and then expands to welcome the dawn in this small town on the Sea of Japan. The second movement pays respect to the incredible influence that Buddhism has had on Japan for a thousand years. The thundering drums of the final movement portray the excitement and spirit of celebration at this most famous of all of Tokyo's ancient temples. --James Huff 00:18, March 26, 2007 (EDT) (from the program notes of The Claremont Winds, submitted with permission)