Peter Clark Posted July 10, 2008 Share Posted July 10, 2008 1) I recently started to re-learn the St Anne Fantasia by Parry and remember reading somewhere - though I can't remember where - that Parry had a dislike of religious ritual. If this is the case, and I currently have no way of confirming it, then it might account for his setting of Blake's words which have become known as Jerusalem and now seems to be one of two unofficial national anthems. Well known is the fact that Blake too had a distrust of organised religion and the words here set are in fact a satire on, particularly, the established church. The "dark satanic mills" are said to be code for the (anglican) curches of England. This being the case I can't help wondering if Parry's setting, given its overall majesty but sweeping melody particularly, is not a tongue-in-cheek statement, adding to the satirical character of Blake's words. Any thoughts, anone. (MM I somehow feel this may appeak to you!) 2) Yesterday's funeral. The coffin went out to The Battle Hymn of the Republic. I thought then and I think now, what a fine hymn it actually is, words and music. The eschatological dimension of liberation theology comes iin such phrases as "as he died to make men holy, let us die to make men free" (despite the exclusive language). I have no idea why this was chosen. Perhaps the deceased was an Elvis fan. Leading on to.... 3) Do people like it when hymns are updated? I once saw the fiirst line of a well-known hymn rendered "Dear Lord and Father of us all....." Oh dear. Peter Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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