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St Paul's Psalter


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The psalter is unfortunately out of print, though the publisher's website is considering a re-print.

 

Does anyone know the location of unsold copies?

Or does the Crypt still stock any?

 

Cheers

 

James G

 

Unfortunately? That's a matter of taste!

 

Sherborne Abbey have just invested in some new paperback copies with purple covers - didn't take particular note of the publisher - but it is still knocking around.

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Unfortunately? That's a matter of taste!
I have to say I find the pointing by far the fussiest of any psalter I have come across. Anglican chants have their roots in plainsong chanting. Both forms essentially follow the same plan (albeit in their different ways): reciting note, mediation, reciting note, ending. The St Paul's Psalter gets very close to abandoning the concept of only one reciting note on either side of the mid-verse colon. That's plain wrong in my book. I didn't think the chants were much to write home about either.
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I have to say I find the pointing by far the fussiest of any psalter I have come across. Anglican chants have their roots in plainsong chanting. Both forms essentially follow the same plan (albeit in their different ways): reciting note, mediation, reciting note, ending. The St Paul's Psalter gets very close to abandoning the concept of only one reciting note on either side of the mid-verse colon. That's plain wrong in my book. I didn't think the chants were much to write home about either.

 

Completely agree! I remember getting hold of the first Hyperion CD of Psalms from St Pauls and listening in such disbelief that I ordered the psalter! I would certainly not have purchased any of the following CDs, but unfortunately, someone gave me the entire set (shortly to go on eBay methinks!)

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Completely agree! I remember getting hold of the first Hyperion CD of Psalms from St Pauls and listening in such disbelief that I ordered the psalter! I would certainly not have purchased any of the following CDs, but unfortunately, someone gave me the entire set (shortly to go on eBay methinks!)

 

I also agree.

 

Generally, I play for a visiting choir at Christ Church, Oxford each summer. The conductor insists upon using this very silly psalter. Apart from the fact that it makes things rather more complicated, I object to the butchering of the music in many verses, by the direction to leave out certain chords. This makes little sense musically. The pointing is, in many cases so unnatural, with many examples of unfortunate word or syllable stressing, that I have wondered quite what John Scott was trying to achieve in producing it. Occasionally, the pointing obfuscates the actual sense of the text.

 

Apparently, one of the first things which Malcolm Archer did when he took up his post at Saint Paul's Cathedral, was to replace the psalters with something else. Whether this was carried out in a piecemeal fashion or at one time, I do not know.

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I also agree.

 

Generally, I play for a visiting choir at Christ Church, Oxford each summer. The conductor insists upon using this very silly psalter. Apart from the fact that it makes things rather more complicated, I object to the butchering of the music in many verses, by the direction to leave out certain chords. This makes little sense musically. The pointing is, in many cases so unnatural, with many examples of unfortunate word or syllable stressing, that I have wondered quite what John Scott was trying to achieve in producing it. Occasionally, the pointing obfuscates the actual sense of the text.

 

Apparently, one of the first things which Malcolm Archer did when he took up his post at Saint Paul's Cathedral, was to replace the psalters with something else. Whether this was carried out in a piecemeal fashion or at one time, I do not know.

 

 

Well, it hurts me to say this, because I struggle terribly to find any fault with John Scott, and, in any case, I am in no position to criticise, but I do find the psalter extraordinarily complicated and not always necessarily so. That said, I'm sitting here listening to a newly acquired second hand copy of CD 9, I think it is, (sorry - distraction there as frogs have been brought forth - all manner of flies - but AHHHH - a quarter of the chant was missing! - Nice bit of 32ft Contra Posaune though in Psalm 105 v 33!)

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Well, it hurts me to say this, because I struggle terribly to find any fault with John Scott, and, in any case, I am in no position to criticise, but I do find the psalter extraordinarily complicated and not always necessarily so. That said, I'm sitting here listening to a newly acquired second hand copy of CD 9, I think it is, (sorry - distraction there as frogs have been brought forth - all manner of flies - but AHHHH - a quarter of the chant was missing! - Nice bit of 32ft Contra Posaune though in Psalm 105 v 33!)

 

 

I think the tempi of the SPC recordings a bit dreary and overall the series is dull compared to the invigorating Priory recordings. Of these, I think that the Gloucester and York recordings are the best. Also interesting to look at the list of choristers and play 'Where are they now?'

 

On the SPC series disappointing that so many discs were produced given the amount of real music that could have been recorded. Can't imagine Hyperion embarking on such a venture now !!

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  • 1 year later...
Guest Echo Gamba
I also agree.

 

Generally, I play for a visiting choir at Christ Church, Oxford each summer. The conductor insists upon using this very silly psalter. Apart from the fact that it makes things rather more complicated, I object to the butchering of the music in many verses, by the direction to leave out certain chords. This makes little sense musically. The pointing is, in many cases so unnatural, with many examples of unfortunate word or syllable stressing, that I have wondered quite what John Scott was trying to achieve in producing it. Occasionally, the pointing obfuscates the actual sense of the text.

 

Apparently, one of the first things which Malcolm Archer did when he took up his post at Saint Paul's Cathedral, was to replace the psalters with something else. Whether this was carried out in a piecemeal fashion or at one time, I do not know.

 

I have not heard the recordings, nor the St Paul's choir "live" since Barry Rose's days, nor seen the Psalter in question.

 

Would the word stresses be deliberate, if unexpected? JS was Organ Student at St Jonn's under Guest, and he (Guest) used to accentuate certain words by lengthening the note, to bring out nuances of meaning. eg "For this God is o - u - r God..."

"Even t - h - e - r - e also shall thy hand lead me...".... Like I say, I have not heard it, but it is just a thought.

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I have not heard the recordings, nor the St Paul's choir "live" since Barry Rose's days, nor seen the Psalter in question.

 

Would the word stresses be deliberate, if unexpected? JS was Organ Student at St Jonn's under Guest, and he (Guest) used to accentuate certain words by lengthening the note, to bring out nuances of meaning. eg "For this God is o - u - r God..."

"Even t - h - e - r - e also shall thy hand lead me...".... Like I say, I have not heard it, but it is just a thought.

Not really - the pointing at times is infelicitous, at others it simply sounds ungainly. I would also agree regarding the speeds on the recordings - even allowing for the generous acoustic ambience, they are somewhat lacking in movement at times.

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