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Music during Tragedy

In October 1966, tragedy struck the Welsh town of Aberfan when heavy rainfall mixed with coal waste and caused a mountainside to collapse. The sodden coal waste slid down to the town, burying the primary school and the students inside. A total of 116 children died in the disaster. 

The Women of Lutheran Service Book You Might Not Know About

Men have had an incredible impact on shaping Lutheran hymnody as it’s known today. From Paul Gerhardt to Dr. Carl Schalk, male hymnwriters have truly given Lutheranism foundational music that speaks volumes. But did you know that many female hymnwriters, hymn translators, and composers have also contributed to the creation of many Lutheran hymns? Read biographies below from Lutheran Service Book: Companion to the Hymns to learn about some of the wonderful women who helped bring Lutheran hymnody together for Christians everywhere to enjoy today.

Music of the Month: Four Easter Hymns for Twelve Bells

Sandra Eithun’s primary collection of popular Easter hymns and second set of popular Easter hymns are perfect for the busy Easter season, especially if you are shorthanded for church services or would like to travel with a small group ringers. Each piece uses only twelve bells, spanning F5 to C7. Because not every piece is in the key of F, these collections offer a wide variety of harmonic possibilities while still maintaining a small number of ringers. Scored for 3 octave handbells or handchimes. Set 1 is Level II–II+. Set 2 is Level II.

God’s Generous Gift of Music

Food. Water. Shelter. Oxygen. Not much is required for a human being to exist. Appropriate nutrients and an appropriate atmosphere. That is essentially what we need to survive.

Composer of the Month: August Crull

August Crull (1845–1923) was born in Germany but moved with his mother to the United States as a young boy following the death of his father. His mother remarried, and Crull began studying to enter the pastoral ministry at Concordia Seminary in 1862.

How to Network with Local Church Musicians

The professional world is full of networking opportunities, from connecting with individuals at conferences to networking entirely online. For a church musician or a music director, these networking needs are far different than, say, a marketing manager of a Fortune 500 company. In fact, making connections with other local musicians in your community can be challenging but also rewarding. The ability to use resources through networking for your church will not only free up your precious time but also give you the tools you need to broaden the musical selections your congregation hears every Sunday without having to dip further into the budget. For those trying to network with local musicians or churches in your area, try these tips below.

Music of the Month: Three Lenten Chorales for Organ

A set of Lenten chorale preludes based on themes of repentance, Christopher M. Wicks’s settings are composed in variation style and are inspired by Bach’s partitas and the Orgelbüchlein.

Why Church Bells Ring

Crumbled have spires in ev’ry land;
    Bells still are chiming and calling,
Calling the young and old to rest,
But above all the souls distressed,
    Longing for rest everlasting.
(LSB 645:1)

Composer of the Month: Carl F. Schalk

Dr. Carl F. Schalk has written more than one hundred hymn tunes, composed dozens of sacred choral pieces, and authored numerous books on liturgical worship. But what lies underneath the titles, tunes, and tempos is a man who has shaped decades of Lutheran music and church worship. His precise dedication to the liturgy of the Church guides his musical endeavors; and this zeal and diligence has molded generations of church musicians and laypersons and is sure to impact generations to come.

Music of the Month: Glory Be to Jesus

John A. Behnke has transcribed his popular organ prelude of the tune WEM IN LEIDENSTAGEN to an accessible arrangement for level II handbells. Based on three stanzas of the hymn, the first section is musically straightforward, the second has new harmonies, and the third uses descanting notes and grand harmony. Scored for 3–5 octave handbells and optional 3 octave handchimes.