William Billings (October 7, 1746 – September 26, 1800) is regarded as the first American choral composer.
William Billings was born in Boston, Massachusetts. At the age of 14, the death of his father stopped Billings' formal schooling. In order to help support his family, young Billings trained as a tanner. He possibly received musical instruction from John Barry, one of the choir members at the New South Church, but for the most part he was self-taught. Billings had an unusual appearance and a strong addiction to snuff. His contemporary wrote that Billings "was a singular man, of moderate size, short of one leg, with one eye, without any address & with an uncommon negligence of person. Still, he spake & sung & thought as a man above the common abilities." Billings died in poverty in Boston on September 26, 1800, leaving behind a widow and six children. His funeral was announced in the Columbian Centinel:Читать далее в Википедии...
Альбомы и синглы:
- Early American Choral Music, Volume 1 [01.03.1992, альбом]