109-GoodChristianMenRejoiceAndSing

Please turn to number 109 and join with the clarinets in “Good Christian Men Rejoice and Sing”.

Number: 109
First Line: Good Christian Men Rejoice and Sing
Name: VULPIUS (GELOBT SEI GOTT).
Meter: 8 8 8. With Alleluias.
Tempo: With excitation
Music: Melchior Vulpius, cir. 1560
Harm. by Ernest MacMillan, 1893-
Text: Cyril A. Allington, 1872-1955

Clarinet Arrangement:109-GoodChristianMenRejoiceAndSing

This is a pleasant and uncomplicated hymn in 3/4.

Huh! The gentleman who harmonized this hymn was Canadian!

Sir Ernest Alexander Campbell MacMillan, CC (August 18, 1893 – May 6, 1973) was a Canadian orchestral conductor and composer, and Canada’s only “Musical Knight”. He is widely regarded as being Canada’s pre-eminent musician, from the 1920s through the 1950s. His has contributed to the development of music in Canada as conductor, performer, composer, administrator, lecturer, adjudicator, writer, humourist, and statesman.

And the original composer:

Melchior Vulpius (c. 1570 in Wasungen – 7 August 1615 in Weimar) was a German singer and composer of church music.

Vulpius came from a poor craftsman’s family. He studied at the local school in Wasungen (in Thuringia) with Johannes Steuerlein. From 1588, he attended the school in Speyer. After marrying in 1589, he obtained a position at the Gymnasium in Schleusingen. In 1596, he was named cantor in Weimar.

He wrote and published church music, the best known being the setting of the hymn Ach, bleib mit deiner Gnade (Ah, stay with your grace) on a text by Josua Stegmann. This setting was often performed in Protestant churches on New Year’s Day and at the end of the service. Important compilations were Cantiones sacrae (1602, 1604), Kirchengesänge und geistliche Lieder Dr. Luthers (1604), Canticum beatissimae (1605) and Ein schön geistlich Gesangbuch (1609). The Cantional (a collection of songs) was published posthumously in 1646 in Gotha.

Red Service Book and Hymnal
Red Service Book and Hymnal

108-HeartsToHeavenAndVoicesRaise

Please turn to number 108 and join with the clarinets in “Hearts to Heaven, and Voices Raise”.

Number: 108
First Line: Hearts to Heaven and Voices Raise
Name: LUX EOI.
Meter: 8 7, 8 7. D.
Tempo: Brightly
Music: Arthur S. Sullivan, 1842-1900
Text: Christopher Wordsworth, 1807-85

Clarinet Arrangement: 108-HeartsToHeavenAndVoicesRaise

We’ve already covered the Arthur S. Sullivan, amazingly, was the Sullivan of “Gilbert & Sullivan”. So, facile melodies and bright harmonies are to be expected here.

Regarding Christopher Wordsworth:

As a scholar he is best known for his edition of the Greek New Testament (1856–1860), and the Old Testament (1864–1870), with commentaries; but his writings were many in number, and included a volume of devotional verse, The Holy Year (1862), Church History up to A.D. 451 (1881–1883), and Memoirs of his uncle, William Wordsworth (1851), to whom he was literary executor. His Inscriptiones Pompeianae (1837) was an important contribution to epigraphy. He also wrote several hymns (Hymns Ancient and Modern New Standard contains seven) of which perhaps the best known is the Easter hymn ‘Alleluia, Alleluia, hearts to heaven and voices raise’.

With William Cooke, a Canon of Chester, Wordsworth edited for the Henry Bradshaw Society the early 15th century Ordinale Sarum of Clement Maydeston, but the work did not appear in print until 1901, several years after the death of both editors.[4]

And, as indicated, he was the nephew, and literary executor, of William Wordworth, a quote from whom I recently ran across, regarding his time at Trinity College.

And from my pillow, looking forth by light
Of moon or favouring stars, I could behold
The antechapel where the statue stood
Of Newton with his prism and silent face,
The marble index of a mind for ever
Voyaging through strange seas of Thought, alone.

Red Service Book and Hymnal
Red Service Book and Hymnal

107-ChristTheLordIsRisenToday

Please turn to number 107 and join with the clarinets in “Christ the Lord is Risen Today”.

Number: 107
First Line: Christ the Lord is Risen Today
Name: CHRIST IS ERSTANDEN.
Meter: 7 7, 7 7. With Alleluia.
Tempo: Joyfully. In unison.
Music: German Carol, XII cent.
Text: Michael Weisse, cir. 1480-1534
Tr. Catherine Windworth, 1829-78 a.

Clarinet Arrangement: 107-ChristTheLordIsRisenAgain

If you know anything about me from reading these posts, you know I love a good medieval hymn.

I am not sure why, but the harmonies and rhythms just speak to me more than modern hymns, like, say, Arthur S. Sullivan’s arrangement for “Come Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain“.

I really didn’t think I could improve on the first time through, so I only played it once. I also couldn’t resist upping the sound model to “Tall Cathedral” using a Garageband Spacial Sound Plugin.

Weisse based “Christus ist erstanden” upon an earlier hymn of the same name which was studied by Martin Luther. The hymn was based on a Latin sequence from 1100 called “Victimae Paschali laudes” and was initially a Bohemian language hymn of the Church of Bohemia.[2] The hymn was first published in print in 1531 by Weisse in his German language Ein Neugesängbuchlein hymnal in the Kingdom of Bohemia after translating it from Bohemian.[1] In 1858, Winkworth translated “Christus ist erstanden” into English, initially giving it the English title of “Song of Triumph”.[1] She first published “Christ the Lord Is Risen Again” into her Lyra Germanica, attributing the hymn to the “Bohemian Brethren“.[3] Winkworth’s approach in translating the hymn was to try and recreate the verses rather than making a direct translation of them due to German fusional language meaning that some words in the original had to be removed in translation as they did not fit into the English translation.[4] The hymn is often used as a hymn for Easter Sunday which commemorates the Resurrection of Jesus.[5]

Music

The hymn was initially performed to the melody of the original Latin “Victimae Pashali laudes”.[6] However, since then, the hymn has been performed in other musical compositions including “Llanfair” and “Wirtemburg”.[7] In 1971, John Rutter also composed his own musical setting for “Christ the Lord Is Risen Again!”[8]

Red Service Book and Hymnal
Red Service Book and Hymnal

106b-ComeYeFaithfulRaiseTheStrain

Please turn to number 106 (Second Tune) and join with the clarinets in “Come Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain”.

Number: 106 (Second Tune)
First Line: Come Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain
Name: SPRING OF SOULS.
Meter: 7 6, 7 6. D. Trochaic.
Tempo: Triumphantly
Music: Ludvig M. Lindeman, 1812-87
Text: St. John of Damascus, VIII cent.
Tr. John Mason Neale, 1818-66 a.

Clarinet Arrangement: 106b-ComeYeFaithfulRaiseTheStrain

Again, about St. John of Damascus:

Born at Damascus, about 676; died some time between 754 and 787. The only extant life of the saint is that by John, Patriarch of Jerusalem, which dates from the tenth century (P.G. XCIV, 429-90). This life is the single source from which have been drawn the materials of all his biographical notices. It is extremely unsatisfactory from the standpoint of historical criticism. An exasperating lack of detail, a pronounced legendary tendency, and a turgid style are its chief characteristics. Mansur was probably the name of John’s father. What little is known of him indicates that he was a sterling Christian whose infidel environment made no impression on his religious fervour. Apparently his adhesion to Christian truth constituted no offence in the eyes of his Saracen countrymen, for he seems to have enjoyed their esteem in an eminent degree, and discharged the duties of chief financial officer for the caliph, Abdul Malek. The author of the life records the names of but two of his children, John and his half-brother Cosmas. When the future apologist had reached the age of twenty-three his father cast about for a Christian tutor capable of giving his sons the best education the age afforded. In this he was singularly fortunate. Standing one day in the market-place he discovered among the captives taken in a recent raid on the shores of Italy a Sicilian monk named Cosmas. Investigation proved him to be a man of deep and broad erudition. Through the influence of the caliph, Mansur secured the captive’s liberty and appointed him tutor to his sons. Under the tutelage of Cosmas, John made such rapid progress that, in the enthusiastic language of his biographer, he soon equalled Diophantus in algebra and Euclid in geometry. Equal progress was made in music, astronomy, and theology.

Red Service Book and Hymnal
Red Service Book and Hymnal

106a-ComeYeFaithfulRaiseTheStrain

Please turn to number 106 (First Tune) and join with the clarinets in, “Come Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain”.

Number: 106 (First Tune)
First Line: Come Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain
Name: ST. KEVIN.
METER: 7 6, 7 6. D. Trochaic.
Tempo: With movement
Music: Arthur S. Sullivan, 1842-1900
Text: St. John of Damascus, VIII cent.
Tr. John Mason Neale, 1818-66 a.

Clarinet Arrangement: 106a-ComeYeFaithfulRaiseTheStrain

Regarding the author of the text, St John of Damascus.

 

Saint John of Damascus (Medieval Greek Ἰωάννης ὁ Δαμασκηνός, Ioánnis o Damaskinós, Byzantine Greek pronunciation: [ioˈanis o ðamasciˈnos]; Latin: Ioannes Damascenus), Arabic: يوحنا الدمشقي‎‎, ALA-LC: Yūḥannā ad-Dimashqī); also known as John Damascene and as Χρυσορρόας / Chrysorrhoas (literally “streaming with gold”—i.e., “the golden speaker”; c. 675 or 676 – 4 December 749) was a Syrian monk and priest. Born and raised in Damascus, he died at his monastery, Mar Saba, near Jerusalem.[1]

A polymath whose fields of interest and contribution included law, theology, philosophy, and music, he is said by some sources to have served as a Chief Administrator to the Muslim caliph of Damascus before his ordination.[2][3] He wrote works expounding the Christian faith, and composed hymns which are still used both liturgically in Eastern Christian practice throughout the world as well as in western Lutheranism at Easter.[4] He is one of the Fathers of the Eastern Orthodox church and is best known for his strong defense of icons.[5] The Catholic Church regards him as a Doctor of the Church, often referred to as the Doctor of the Assumption due to his writings on the Assumption of Mary.[6]

I thought that was some pretty cool history, then I realized that Arthur S. Sullivan was the “Sullivan” of “Gilbert & Sullivan”!

Sir Arthur Seymour Sullivan MVO (13 May 1842 – 22 November 1900) was an English composer. He is best known for his series of 14 operatic collaborations with the dramatist W. S. Gilbert, including H.M.S. Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance and The Mikado. His works comprise 23 operas, 13 major orchestral works, eight choral works and oratorios, two ballets, incidental music to several plays, and numerous hymns and other church pieces, songs, and piano and chamber pieces. The best known of his hymns and songs include “Onward Christian Soldiers” and “The Lost Chord”.

Red Service Book and Hymnal
Red Service Book and Hymnal