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Vox Humana

Hymn Playing

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Guest Lee Blick
My understanding of "gathering notes" is to prolong the first chord rather than a treble note. I may be wrong.

 

Me too.

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Guest Psalm 78 v.67
Absolutely true - on the many occasions when you need to tell them what the tune is.

 

But I don't think there's a single one of our congregation who needs telling how Woodlands goes, for example. If it says 422 on the boards and it's just been announced as 'Tell out my soul', then I'll choose the final two lines as the playover. It sounds so much better, sets the tempo just as well, and doesn't pose any difficulties for the congregation. (Same goes for other old favourites like Blaenwern, Abbot's Leigh, and dare I say it, Sh*ne Jesus Sh*ne...)

 

The 1st line of "Woodlands" is too short as a playover to give my lot time to gather their wits; the 1st 2 lines sounds silly, so 3rd and 4th is the sensible option. (My predecessor expected people to start with the bass "door knocker" alone!)

 

I always play the last 2 lines of "Abbots Leigh" in a vain attempt to get people to sing that infamous downward 6th in the last line.

 

My lot can, surprisingly, can cope with the written intro to "Shine..." and also to one that (I think) no one has mentioned - "Sing of the Lord's goodness"

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My understanding of "gathering notes" is to prolong the first chord rather than a treble note. I may be wrong.

 

Crumbs. How does that work in practice then? How does the congregation know when to come in?

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Guest Psalm 78 v.67
Crumbs. How does that work in practice then? How does the congregation know when to come in?

 

Presumably, if there was / (is?) a choir, they would be "drilled" accordingly. My local parish church do this. The first time I played for the local Methodists some years ago, I was horrified, on putting down the 1st chord of the 1st hymn (O for a thousand tongues, to "Richmond") when nothing happened from the congregation - being used in my own church to everyone knowing that they had to go with me or be left behind. There was no choir; I just didn't know what to do (I was very young then!) , so I held the chord and waited, but after a definite 3 beats, the entire congregation began absolutely together, and so it was in every verse of every hymn.

 

If I stop to analyse what I normally do now, I usually oh so slightly (and I mean a fraction of a beat) prolong and then detach the 1st chord of the 1st verse - irf there is no choir. My choir are drilled to start with me.

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My lot can, surprisingly, can cope with the written intro to "Shine..."

I usually add a 'bump' to this one, too - in the last two beats before they come in, an A then an A in the octave below. It sounds a bit naff, but then, if naffness were a consideration we wouldn't be singing such a song in the first place... and wouldn't that be a shame? :rolleyes:

 

and also to one that (I think) no one has mentioned - "Sing of the Lord's goodness"

Is that the one that sounds like Take Five by Dave Brubeck?

 

Very interested (/horrified) at the thought of holding a gathering note for a full three beats. I'll sometimes hover a fraction of a beat longer on the first chord (on those occasions where Christian charity overtakes musical conscience), but three beats? Yikes.

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Guest Lee Blick
Is that the one that sounds like Take Five by Dave Brubeck?

 

Ugh, I HATE that hymn/song/abomination. I get visions of the kind of people who sang "All around my hat" complete with geeetars,tin whistles and washboards in their polonecks accompanying it. :angry:

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As no recognised dictionary I have to hand contains 'gathering notes', maybe we can define it as 'any note or notes played before the start of a verse to encourage the singing to start'? That would take in one note, a couple of notes, or even a whole chord.

 

Sing of the Lord's Goodness def requires above average competence; (1) to be able to play a hymn in 5/4 throughout and (2) make the best on the organ of what is a poor piano part in the hymn books I've seen it in. (I do find, now that you've mentioned it, that if you play the Dave Brubeck riff throughout, the cong get the idea). My kids used to like doing the little descant in the last chorus. They sing it rather well at All Souls and I there is a marvellous version for orchestra, I think done by Mr Brooks of Langham Place on one of their Prom Praise cds.

 

Mr Blick, I think you're being either a little unfair (I rather like Steeleye Span) or tongue in cheek?

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Guest Lee Blick
Sing of the Lord's Goodness def requires above average competence

 

Requires above average pretentiousness, don't you mean :angry: Actually it reminds me more of that sketch the Fast Show used to do with the modern jazz combo playing pretentious sh*t. Please, someone euthanise that piece of muzak.

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Guest Psalm 78 v.67
I usually add a 'bump' to this one, too - in the last two beats before they come in, an A then an A in the octave below. It sounds a bit naff, but then, if naffness were a consideration we wouldn't be singing such a song in the first place... and wouldn't that be a shame? :angry:

Is that the one that sounds like Take Five by Dave Brubeck?

 

Yes

 

Very interested (/horrified) at the thought of holding a gathering note for a full three beats. I'll sometimes hover a fraction of a beat longer on the first chord (on those occasions where Christian charity overtakes musical conscience), but three beats? Yikes.

 

Not my choice I hasten to add - it was obviously what they were used to!

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