This three-volume set edited by William Braun includes the SAB chorale settings of Michael Praetorius, making this collection accessible to most choirs. The settings may be used as a complete selection by the choir, as an anthem, or in alteration with the congregation for the Hymn of the Day.
The new music collection features an assortment of nineteen wonderful preludes by Georg Philipp Telemann (1681–1767) and edited by Sam Eatherton. Telemann composed chorale preludes that were typically set twice, the first in three voices and the second alio modo or aliter (“in another way”) consisting of two voices (bicinium), making these settings valuable to student and seasoned organists alike. This collection of chorale preludes was carefully selected and edited by Sam Eatherton to be compatible with Lutheran Service Book and other hymnals. These settings provide a fresh alternative that will appeal to church organists looking for new ways to present these German chorale tunes.
Jonathan D. Campbell has arranged a medley, or three hymn tunes, associated with Christ the Good Shepherd, including BROTHER JAMES’ AIR, BRADBURY, and RESIGNATION. Arranged with accessibility in mind, the setting is scored for two-octave handbells. Several meter and tempo changes provide variety and contrast, while the optional addition of handchimes adds to the gentle nature of the piece. Level II.
The sixth volume of the Piano Prelude Series includes tunes J,K, and L from Lutheran Service Book. The Piano Prelude Series includes original compositions by various composers, specifically created for Lutheran Service Book hymns. The sixth volume includes settings written by Elizabeth Grimpo, Thomas W. Jefferson, and Zach Unke.
This year, the Church celebrates the Day of Pentecost on May 23, marking the end of the season of Easter. The word “Pentecost” literally means “fifty,” as it falls fifty days after Easter Day.
On the Day of Pentecost, Jesus’ apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit and given the ability to speak in many languages, which they used to spread the Gospel to all people and cultures. The Day of Pentecost marks the beginning of the “Time of the Church” in the Church Year—that half of the Church Year where the paraments in the sanctuary remain green and God’s people hear, in more detail, about the works and ministry of Jesus.
This collection by Benjamin Kolodziej features Easter organ settings of moderate difficulty. Each employs various musical textures to convey the spirit of the hymn texts to the congregation. From meditative and lush treatments of LANCASHIRE and VRUECHTEN to a sprightly trio arrangement of BESANÇON to a setting of DUKE STREET suitable for showcasing a solo trumpet, organists will find these settings invigorating and fun to play.
Mitchell Eithun provides a plaintive arrangement of the tune GETHSEMANE. Based on the first three stanzas of the hymn, Eithun’s portrayal of the hymn’s narrative includes phrases of the text throughout the score. This level II piece cleverly ends with an unfinished feel, adding to the anticipation of Easter dawn.
Good Friday Suite features four hymns: “O Perfect Life of Love”; “Sing, My Tongue, the Glorious Battle”; “The Royal Banners Forward Go”; and “O Darkest Woe.” The suite may be played from start to finish or each as an individual prelude. The suite is especially useful for a Tre Ore service.
Robert J. Powell (b. 1932) began writing music when he was in high school and, since then, has had more than three hundred compositions published by sacred music publishers. His works range from organ and choral compositions to handbell and instrumental pieces.
Powell currently serves as organist at Church of the Redeemer in Greenville, South Carolina. Like many churches across the country, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced his congregation to adapt their musical practices on Sunday mornings.
Robert J. Powell has composed a well-crafted and accessible organ collection for Lent, Cross of Jesus: Six Preludes for Lent. This book offers settings that are appropriate to the season, such as “Go to Dark Gethsemane,” “Jesus, I Will Ponder Now,” and “Cross of Jesus, Cross of Sorrow.” Each setting offers a series of key and tempo changes. The final setting, “Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me,” offers a joyful, majestic ending to an otherwise somber piece.