Magazine article The American Organist

Choral Old and New

Magazine article The American Organist

Choral Old and New

Article excerpt

I begin by mentioning three fascinating books that I encourage you to obtain:

Church Music in the United States, 1760-1901, essays by David Music and Paul Westermeyer (MorningStar). Rather than being a comprehensive history of church music in the United States, this book is a set of essays on church music covering the above period, including American Psalmody in the Northeastern States and Canada, American Psalmody in the Southeastern States, Sunday School Hymnody, Revivalism, Gospel Hymns, African-American Song, and much more.

A History of Singing, John Potter and Neil Sorrell (Cambridge University Press). This is a fascinating study of the evolution of singing, exploring it as a historical and cross-cultural phenomenon. From the Neanderthal era to Bollywood-it is all here! The authors write of many cultures, Western and non-Western, and pinpoint some of the historical moments when singing changed courses. The book also includes extensive sources and references.

Readings in African American Church Music and Worship, Vol. 2, compiled and edited by James Abbington (GIA). Divided into seven sections, this large book covers a huge range of topics concerning music and worship in black churches. The list of contributors features excellent scholarship and wonderful ideas to ponder. The titles themselves are thought-provoking, including "Black Worship," "Gospel Goes to Church (Again)," "Religion and Rap Music," and "Womanist Musings"-among many. This is a book that offers important thought for all of us involved in leading worship, no matter our color or our creed.

Here are some recent issues that I believe you willfind of interest:

All Sisters and Brothers, Timothy Takach, SATB, organ, and two trumpets (tim@timothyctakach.com). This anthem uses a text (by Julia Klatt Singer) that would be useful for ecumenical services and times of celebration. …

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