Sunday, December 29, 2013

Sunday morning sounds: Amazing Grace (Tune: Greenville) and The Star of Bethlehem, redone.

The now-famous hymn Amazing Grace showed up in 19th-century tunebooks and hymnbooks joined to a variety of melodies. My copy of Harmonia Sacra (Tenth edition, 1860) uses the tune Greenville, with the final phrase of each verse repeated in a four-measure refrain (with new melodic material).  AABA form, long before Broadway and pop songs of the 1910s and 1920s:

As printed, this is a little tough to play, because the tenor is placed topside and notated an octave higher. This puts the three parts out of order. To make it easier for me to combine the parts as a keyboard solo, I redid the notation.  The tenor is now in its "proper" place:


 Same thing with The Star of Bethelehem--tenor on top, one octave up: 

As before, I put the three parts in the right order on two staves:


I have no idea what happened to my text up there. Anyway, now you will hear the two tunes on my Casio WK-3800, with multi-tracking. (All me.) Perfect Sunday morning music (said the presenter):

CLICK HERE TO HEAR: Amazing Grace (Greenville); Star of Bethlehem.

Amazing Grace (Greenville)--Harmonia Sacra, 1860.
The Star of Bethlehem--Harmonia Sacra, 1860.

Me, on the Casio WK-3800, with engineering assist from Sonar X2 and Magix.



1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I used to play with a band years ago who played an arrangement os Amazing Grace that was set to a tune that looks a lot like this one. Drove me crazy. I found it harder to sing a familiar lyric to a different tune thane learning a brand new song!--Bill