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Sunday In The Parlor

Sacred Songs for the Home, Page 2

 

This is a continuation of Our April, 2003 Issue of songs about sacred songs, if you missed page one, check the link at the end of this page or use this link.

 

 




Face To Face

1898

 


Music by: Herbert Johnson
Lyrics by: Johnson
Cover artist: unsigned

 

Once again, Herbert Johnson created a beautiful hymn when he created this 1898 gem. Perhaps not as acclaimed as his Ave Maria (see page 1 of this feature) but none the less, this hymn has also found a permanent place in many church hymnals. Musically, I've found this work to be a little cumbersome, but it still comes across nicely and has a rich harmony and a clear hymnal feel to it. We've had this song posted for years on our site as an unfeatured gallery work from 1998. With this edition, we've spruced it up, present it in the Scorch format and have improved the MIDI file significantly from that early rather feeble attempt.

 

I am amazed that so little has been published about Johnson and his wonderful music. As well, it seems his publisher Waldo Music (where's Waldo?, Boston of course) has suffered the same fate. Again, if a knowledgeable reader from Boston has any information about Waldo Music and anyone else with information about Johnson, please let us know.

 

 

Listen to and see this Johnson hymn Printable score! (scorch format)

Listen to MIDI version

Lyrics

 


 


The Homeland

1900



Music by: E.W. Hanscom
Lyrics by: H.R. Haweis
Cover artist: Unsigned


From the pen of yet another obscure and almost lost composer and songwriter we have this excellent sacred song about going "home" (to heaven) and the ultimate reunion. The opening has a rather "gospel" feel to it and moves directly into a simple melody that is pleasant yet not particularly memorable. The lyrics to this melody were also used in the Hymn, The Homeland! O The Homeland! with music by Arthur S. Sullivan. Yes, the same Sullivan from Gilbert & Sullivan. The hymn has appeared in a number of hymnals including the College Hymnal (1897) and the Presbyterian New Psalms and Hymns (1901). Personally, I prefer this version to Sullivan's and am a little perplexed that this version did not prevail. Perhaps it is because of Sullivan's reputation. Musically, though simple, I believe Hanscom's to be superior. If you are familiar with the Sullivan version, you can judge for yourself.

 

E.W. Hanscom was born in Maine in 1848 and died sometime after 1910. He was educated initially in Maine and later traveled to London, Berlin and Vienna to study composition. His compositions were mostly religious with a few other works including a song cycle and two Christmas carols with violin obbligatto. Besides the Homeland, he wrote several songs that enjoyed a fair level of popularity in the late 19th century among the more popular ones were, Go; Rose; In Her Golden Hair and A Lullaby. (American History and Encyclopedia of Music p. 351)

 

Hugh R. Haweis (1838 - 1901) attended Trinity College, Cambridge. He was ordained in 1861 and was curate at Bethnal Green, Westminster and Stepney. In 1866, he was appointed curate at St. James, Marylebone. An accomplished man, he
was a musician, music scholar and ordained minister. As an author, he wrote several books across a wide spectrum of subjects from a treatise on cremation titled Ashes to Ashes, a book on Violins, Old Violins published by John Grant, Edinburgh 1905, Old Songs with drawings by Edwin A Abbey and Alfred Parsons to Music and Morals with David Bogue, in 1882. Though he seems to have left behind a number of works, little else can be found about him.

 


Hear and see this sacred song Printable sheet music! (Scorch format only)

listen to MIDI version

Lyrics

 


 


God That Madest Earth and Heaven

1903



Music by: Wilfrid Sanderson
Lyrics by: Reginald Heber, Richard Whately
Cover artist: unsigned

 

As with The Homeland, here we have a hymn that has appeared in a number of musical guises. Perhaps the most common setting is to the traditional song All Through The Night. Again, we have, in my humble opinion a much superior musical setting than the more common version. I have found this song to be inspirational and uplifting. It has a wonderful melody and musically has a tremendous progression that takes it through the text in an expressive way and ends with a triumphant crescendo. The music clearly expresses the words in ways that few songs can do. Sanderson has taken a wonderful lyric and written a beautiful musical setting for it. I suppose one reason that this version has not predominated in hymnals as it is more difficult for the masses to sing. The All Through The Night melody is simpler and less taxing for a congregation to sing. In any event, this one is a winner and one of my favorites this month.

 


Wilfrid Sanderson (1878-1935) an organist and choirmaster, is known to have written the melodies to other hymns, including Great Master, Touch Us. As well, Sanderson also wrote a secular songs and arranged other works by various masters for organ including an arrangement Meyerbeer's Coronation March ('Le Prophète')
Known as a writer of fine ballads, among his other works are Until, (1910), Friend O' Mine, Neglectful Blues and Charm me Asleep (recorded 1932 by John McCormack). Some of his songs have been recently recorded on collections of ballads and anthems and his music continues to live on through his hymns as well.

 


Reginald Heber (1783-1826) Heber attended Brasenose College, Oxford, cradle of a number of the most prominent hymn writers in England. He also attended All Souls College, and later became rector in Shropshire, England. In 1823, he was appointed Bishop of Calcutta. He wrote over 60 hymns, most of which were not recognized and published till long after he was gone. He wrote some of Christendom's greatest hymns including Holy, Holy, Holy. Heber's co-author in this venture was Richard Whately (1787-1863) an Anglican priest and author. Educated at Oriel College, Oxford, he ultimately rose to become Bishop of Dublin in 1831. He wrote a number of hymns as well as books on non religious topics including Elements of Logic, in 1826.

 


Listen to this inspiring sacred song Printable sheet music! (Scorch format)

Listen to MIDI version

Lyrics

 


The Maiden's Prayer

1908



Music by: Thécla Badarzewska
Lyrics by: None, piano solo
Cover artist: unsigned


I first heard this beautiful meditation years ago on a recording of salon music from the Musical Heritage Society (MHS 1139). The pianist, Hans Kann, played this work with so much feeling and tenderness it nearly brought tears to my eyes and the melody has stayed with me for years. When I happened to acquire the sheet music, I was ecstatic. The work is a set of variations based upon a very simple, yet elegant melody. The variations are not very complex, yet require a steady hand and sure touch to perform effectively. Using a number of ornaments such as trills and turns and tuplets of unusual dimensions, all the while accompanied by a fairly repetitive bass line, the composer managed to create a true masterpiece for the salon (parlor, if you please.) Originally written in 1856, Badarzewska later wrote a companion piece, The Prayer Is Answered that met with some success but nowhere near the acclaim of this work. The New Grove (volume 2, p. 6) is particularly uncharitable in calling the Maiden's Prayer of no artistic merit yet the work won worldwide acclaim, sold millions of copies around the world and was issued in over 80 counties. Perhaps Badarzewska's success with this piece is her greatest revenge for those who criticize its "merit." I believe the simplicity and beauty of the melody transcends any critical view of her composition. It is attractive, pleasant and somehow comforting to listen to this beautiful piece. I always did find that my own taste runs counter to that of critics.

 

Thécla Badarzewska-Baranowska (1834-1861) Born in Warsaw Poland. Badarzewska was a self trained amateur pianist who received no formal musical education. She is known mainly for the Maiden's Prayer which was published in 80 countries and it was published in versions for four hands, eight hands, other instruments and voice. A composer of salon pieces, Badarzewska published a number of follow on pieces to this work including Second prayer of a Maiden and The Prayer's Answer. Her other published works include; Sweet Dreams, Memories of a Hut and Memories of a Friendship. She died at the tender age of 27 in her native Warsaw.

 


Hear this great piano meditation Printable sheet music! (Scorch format only)

listen to MIDI version

Lyrics (Sorry, no lyrics, piano solo)

 


In The Garden

1917



Music by: C. Austin Miles
Lyrics by: Miles
Cover artist: Unknown

 

This is perhaps one of the most expressive and beautiful sacred songs written. Recorded frequently ever since its first publication, the song is one that could truly be called a classic "evergreen" hit. Cynthia Clawson recorded this song as the title track on her gorgeous album In The Garden and Amy Grant popularized in in the 80's with several recordings. According to Kenneth Osbeck, author of 101 Hymn Stories, the provenance of this hymn is interesting and inspirational.

It was in 1912 that music publisher Dr. Adam Geibel asked C. Austin Miles to write a hymn text that would be "sympathetic in tone, breathing tenderness in every line; one that would bring hope to the hopeless, rest for the weary, and downy pillows to dying beds." In George W. Sanville's book, Forty Gospel Hymn Stories, Miles has left the following account of the writing of this hymn:

One day in March, 1912, I was seated in the dark room, where I kept my photographic equipment and organ. I drew my Bible toward me; it opened at my favorite chapter, John 20-whether by chance or inspiration let each reader decide. That meeting of Jesus and Mary had lost none of its power to charm.

As I read it that day, I seemed to be part of the scene. I became a silent witness to that dramatic moment in Mary's life, when she knelt before her Lord, and cried, "Rabboni!"

My hands were resting on the Bible while I stared at the light blue wall. As the light faded, I seemed to be standing at the entrance of a garden, looking down a gently winding path, shaded by olive branches. A woman in white, with head bowed, hand clasping her throat, as if to choke back her sobs, walked slowly into the shadows. It was Mary. As she came to the tomb, upon which she place her hand, she bent over to look in, and hurried away. John, in flowing robe, appeared, looking at the tomb; then came Peter, who entered the tomb, followed slowly by John. As they departed, Mary reappeared; leaning her head upon her arm at the tomb, she wept. Turning herself, she saw Jesus standing, so did I. I knew it was He. She knelt before Him, with arms outstretched and looking into His face cried "Rabboni!"

I awakened in full light, gripping the Bible, with muscles tense and nerves vibrating. Under the inspiration of this vision I wrote as quickly as the words could be formed the poem exactly as it has since appeared. That same evening I wrote the music.

Next to "The Old Rugged Cross", this hymn has been one of the most popular gospel hymns ever written, beginning with the days when Homer Rodeheaver led singing for the great Billy Sunday campaigns and used the hymn extensively.

( Taken from 101 Hymn Stories © 1982 by Kenneth Osbeck . Published by Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, MI. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved. )

 

C. Austin Miles (1868-1946) Miles attended the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and the University of Pennsylvania. In 1892, he abandoned his career as a pharmacist and wrote wrote his first Gospel song, “List ’Tis Jesus’ Voice” which was published by the Hall-Mack Company. He served as editor and manager at the Hall-Mack publishers for 37 years. He wrote many other popular hymns including, Answering Thy Call; A New Name in Glory; He Is Mine; I Love to Think of Jesus and Look for Me!, however, it is In The Garden for which he is most remembered. ( Base biographical data & photo from the cyberhymnal.com site )

 


Hear this beautiful old hymn
Printable! (Scorch format only)

Listen to MIDI version

Lyrics

 




I've Done My Work

1920



Music by: Carrie Jacobs-Bond
Lyrics by: Dr. George W. Caldwell
Cover artist: B. Schubert


What better way to end my work this month, and to end this feature with I've Done My Work. Not only is the title aprpos, but the composer is my personal favorite and one whom I am almost obsessed. I've accumulated nearly all her works and just can't get enough of her poetry and music. Almost all of her output is secular, although much of that has religious overtones and spiritual meaning. This work is one of the very few sacred songs and in this case, she had help from a Physician and poet from San Francisco, Dr. George W. Caldwell. Caldwell is perhaps best known for his 1919 work Legends of San Francisco, a compilation of poems about the San Francisco bay area, supposedly drawn from Indian legends. Here, Caldwell has provided a touching sentiment that Bond has wedded to one of her most expressive melodies to create a beautiful gospel style song that deserves a permanent place in the sacred song catalog.

 

Carrie Jacobs-Bond has been a continuing delight for me and has many songs that have been published both in features devoted to her and our monthly features. Her tremendous output and range of style has given her a well deserved place as one of America's finest song composers. To read our biography of Bond and see more of her songs, read our special feature on her songs, visit our Bond biography article and our feature on her songs from June of 2000.

 

With that, for this month, I've done my work, I hope you have enjoyed it.

 



Enjoy this great Bond sacred song Printable sheet music! (Scorch format only)

listen to MIDI version

Lyrics

 


That completes our feature of sacred songs for the parlor. We mentioned that we would list additional sacred songs we've featured and here they are with links to the features where they appear.

Nearer My God to Thee November 1997

Ave Maria, Mascagni, December 2001

Hope In The Lord, December 2001

Star of The East, September 2002

In addition, in June of 2002 we did a feature on "Chime Songs" many of which are sacred in title or nature, visit that feature to see several songs in that genre.

 

See our resources page for a complete bibliography of all resources used to research this and other articles in our series. In text citations in this issue refer to works in the bibliography except where otherwise noted.

If you missed page one, or want to return to it, click here to go to page one



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