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Thread: Psalms

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    Captain of Water Music JONESEY's Avatar
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    Psalms

    Hi,

    Does anyone know any really well known Psalm chants?.
    I play for an Evensong which only has a handful of people attending. I would like to have a range of 3 or 4 chants that they can learn well, so that the sung psalms aren't just an organ solo!.

    Would appreciate any advice.

  2. #2
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso methodistgirl's Avatar
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    I like praise and worship songs that come from the book of Psalms. What
    church or synagogue do you go to? I know of a lot of church hymns that
    was inspired by the book of Psalms. Let me know something.
    judy tooley

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    Lieutenant Commander, Concertmaster Serassi1836's Avatar
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    You asked on gregorian psalms for Offices? (Vespers, Lauds, Compline...)
    In gregorian chants, there are eight tones of the psalmes, the tono peregrinus and the tono in directum.
    They are structured with a start, then a hold note, the mediant, the hold note and the final.
    You start, then you hold a note singing the various syllables in the text till a bold syllable you must pass to the mediant. Sometimes, there are some preparatory sillables before the mediant (or before the final) that are printed italic. When you see a * you must pass to the second hold note. When there is a bold syllable you pass to the final. If you see a + during the text you must sing the flex, which is a second or a third lower the hold note. Yes, it's very complicated!!
    Here are some website you can use.
    on http://www.gregorian-chant.info/psalterium/index.html you can see four tones with images and examples.
    on http://www.lml.badw.de/info/ro1146c.htm you have a document on psalmes tones, but it's in latin...
    I can scan some pages of my Liber usualis and I will attach them here.
    Last edited by Serassi1836; Feb-08-2008 at 17:44.

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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Jonesey,

    You might also check out the Gelineau Psalms. Years back I used those frequently in the RC parish that I was organist for ... always a wonderful responsorial that was easy for the congregation to sing.
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    Vice Admiral Virtuoso methodistgirl's Avatar
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    I know of some hymns, praise songs, and messianic songs that come from
    the book of Psalms" Thou O Lord art a shield for me, the glory and the
    lifter of my head." Psalm's 3
    judy tooley

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    Captain of Water Music JONESEY's Avatar
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    Thanks all - perhaps if I get the name of the book I play from, others might also play from the same book.
    I really just need a couple of single chants and a double chant which are pretty well known, or easy to sing.

  7. #7
    Rear Admiral Appassionata
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    Quote Originally Posted by JONESEY View Post
    Hi,

    Does anyone know any really well known Psalm chants?.
    I play for an Evensong which only has a handful of people attending. I would like to have a range of 3 or 4 chants that they can learn well, so that the sung psalms aren't just an organ solo!.

    Would appreciate any advice.
    Standard Psalms aren't so much of a problem. Go through the Psalter and pick a 3 or 4 that sit well and the congregation can grasp easily because they're obvious (I'm sure you know what I mean when I talk about the next note being obvious...) Then use just those and over time they will learn them. Maybe try using only one for 3 or 4 weeks then another for the same and coming back - building up in that way?

    Responsorial psalms are more of a problem, because in the catholic psalter, the responses change every week and so as a consequence the music has to. The tunes do come round pretty often, but you can't really get away with only a couple as you can with regular psalms...

    OR

    You could always write 3 or 4 of your own chants specifically for them -I'm sure they would be very chuffed if you did. I've written a few things specifically for my church, that get used every week - for example the 'Trinity Amen' as I've called it. We needed a choral Amen and didn't like the ones we had music for, so I wrote one specifically for the church. It is used all the time and it is unique to the church. IMO things like that help with garnering respect and creating a good impression in the church, and they really do appreciate when someone does something like that.

    I'm just in the middle of writing a fantasia on the Gloria we are using for Easter. The purpose of which is to fill with music the period of time where all the candles in the church will be lit on the easter vigil service. (there's no gloria in lent so the first time will be Easter saturday vigil) There's an awful lot of candles, and it will take about 4-5 minutes. Then it needs to seemlessly lead into the gloria. Again, writing something like that (which will doubtless be re-used next year and subsequently) is something special and leaves an imprint.

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