William Billings In these times of renewed patriotism, music reviewer Tom Manoff acquaints us with the music of William Billings, often called America's first great composer. Billings wrote chorales, patriotic songs, and marching music during the Revolutionary War. His music, according to our reviewer, is like the sound of American democracy singing. The CDs mentioned which feature the music of William Billings are "Early American Choral Music" with Paul Hillier conducting His Majestie's Clerks (Harmonia Mundi - #3957048), and "Liberty Tree", with Joel Cohen conducting the Boston Camerata. (Wea/Atlantic/Erato - #21668).