Next to nature, probably the nearest thing I have to a personal religion is music - almost all music, any music, of any genre.
It may come as a surprise to some that I have a passionate love of certain kinds of hymns. Being a bit of a traditionalist in some ways (though not in many others!) I particularly like what I call 'proper' hymns (and which others would no doubt call the boring sort) with good old-fashioned singable tunes. A few old favourites:
Some of you might know those tunes as set to the words of 'Christ Is Made the Sure Foundation' and 'Guide me, O Thou Great Redeemer.' This version really gets the hairs on the back of the neck standing up - a 1,000-strong Welsh choir:
This one - Eternal father, Strong to Save' - is known as the Navy hymn, and always gets me blubbing because of my granddad, who was a sailor for years and served (and was wounded) in WWII. One to watch on my own, this:
Far and away my favourite composer is Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872-1958), who, despite being a convinced atheist, was for a time a church organist and a prolific writer of hymns - some of them very famous, like 'For All the Saints' and 'Come Down, O Love Divine' - and a great deal of other church music. Though not personally religious, he practically regarded music as his religion as well. He knew that music was a vitally important part of the shared communal experience - for many people singing hymns in church of a Sunday was probably the only exposure to music they would get all week.
My own personal favourite - 'Breath on me, Breathe of God' is another, but I could find a link for that one. _________________ "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." ~ Robert McCloskey
Know all the greats having sang soprano in the Church choir for many years.
The best memory was launching the new Church of England Hymn book.
I sang with the choir in Manchester Cathedral and it was broadcast on radio.
Our choir master was a brilliant organist and taught at the Royal college of music in Manchester. Went to a couple of recitals, one where he played the piano and organ and the other he was conducting the orchestra.
Brings back good memories all around... especially the mistletoe ones which we had hung over the organ...
Love JL.xx _________________ Beware of the Judderman my dear, when the moon is fat.Psalm 101:5.Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer.
Location: Walking the narrow path, singing merrily and living Victoriously
Posted: Sun Oct 18, 2009 10:02 pm Post subject:
I also love many of the 'old' and traditional hymns. Unlike many of the more modern choruses and songs which seem to be all about 'me', they're more about the wonder and awesomeness of God. In some churches, they've become vastly underrated with a generation and that's, to me, sad. "How Great Thou Art" is one of many favourites along with "Be Thou My Vision", "Great is Thy Faithfulness" and "Lord of all Hopefulness".
_________________ <><Although Christians and Mormons use the same words such as grace, faith, God and sin, they mean very different things by them. Beware the poison!><>
There was a lovely old song my mother used to sing called 'The old church choir'. Here is the lyric :-
The sunset light was fading, as by an old church door,
I pondered on the dear old hymns I'd heard in the days of yore.
Like angel voices singing in twilight's afterglow,
The old church choir sang sweetly the hymns of the long ago.
'Nearer my God to Thee', I heard the old choir sing,
'Hosanna in the highest', the sacred anthems ring,
'Holy, holy, holy', still the strains rang higher,
'Rock of ages cleft for me' ... were the hymns of the old church choir.
I can still hear her singing it!
They don't write 'em like that any more!
Last edited by Leonard James on Mon Oct 19, 2009 8:33 am; edited 1 time in total
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