Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sing to the Lord a new psalm

Once upon a time, choirs would chant the psalms every Sunday morning. (We could always tell whether or not choir practice was rushed by whether the choir agreed on when to leave the common tone for the closing pattern of each verse.)

I don’t know how many churches currently do so, but there is now a project by a Texas-based Catholic nonprofit to compile various settings for Psalms for each of the three years of the RCL. (28 Prayer Book parishes need not apply.) The material is made available free via a Creative Commons license.

The content is at, while the project is described at the website of Corpus Christi Watershed and also a posting at the First Thing Evangel blog. The project explains its project in Jan 2010 a commentary published in Homiletic & Pastoral Review.

I haven’t had a chance to go over the settings with the piano, but my impression is that they are mainly (or) entirely newer settings since the website highlights their contemporary composers. Four are in honor of historic Catholic leaders — including Thomas Aquinas — but no provenance is given with the settings.

Perhaps more interesting are the resources on Gregorian Chant, including a historical essay on accompanying the chant by resident composer Jeff Ostrowski and free copies of Nova Organi Harmonia (a 1940s compilation and harmonization of Gregorian Chant).

Overall, there is a wealth of material at the Chabanel/CC Watershed websites which certainly bear further investigation.

1 comment:

Steve Finnell said...
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