Soppy sixties service sheets

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Nick Baty
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Soppy sixties service sheets

Post by Nick Baty »

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Last edited by Nick Baty on Wed Apr 15, 2009 11:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Alan
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Re: Soppy sixties service sheets

Post by Alan »

Nick Baty wrote:And what about first communion children singing "host so white, clean and bright..." to Edelweiss? There are so many anecdotes about these days but can anyone help with documentary evidence?

Alas, I have no documentary evidence from before the time of my first computer (1986). But I do have an anecdote! :D (Actually, I only have three altogether, so apologies to the previously-bored out there.)

Once upon a time, a long time ago, I was the organist and choirmaster at a church some considerable distance from home, right on the edge of town. Every Sunday, my wife and I would walk round to the nearby convent, whence the nun who was also the parish worker would give us a lift to the church. One Sunday, a few weeks before the annual Confirmation service, she brought up the subject of the music. In particular, she wanted us to sing Edelweiss at Communion. Now, not being as tactful and diplomatic as I am these days, and - more to the point - never having encountered this song in its 'liturgical' guise, I naturally assumed that she was requesting a selction from The Sound of Music, so I refused. She pleaded, but I was adamant. Finally, she said, "Well, if you won't do it for me, will you do it for God?" Without stopping to think, I replied, "Why? Has He especially requested it?"

All was well the following week, when she explained in more detail what she had meant. However, if I recall correctly, it was on a Sunday not long after that that she set off for church without waiting for us to arrive. After that, we got up a little earlier and caught the bus each week.

oopsorganist
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Post by oopsorganist »

Noooo

No one ever sang Blowing in the Wind or Streets of London at Mass? I think we did sing Lord of the Dance though, and maybe Every Star Shall Sing a Carol. I quite like that actually. It goes a bit daft around the fourth verse or so. Kumbya and He's Got the Whole World in His Hand must surely be the worst it can get nowadays. There are two in the HON to melodies that the Seekers used. Vaster Far that Any Ocean (which makes my family laugh) and Upon Thy Table Lord We Spread. The Seekers were good though, wish we could proper sing like that in church.

Is all the seventies stuff rough then? I am getting to like some of the newer things in the CFE and HON. You had better give me some advice before I go off and learn them/ introduce them to our parish.
uh oh!

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Post by RobH »

As someone who has, fairly recently, been "thrown in at the deep end" with regard to playing the organ and choosing our Sunday mass music, I find the 'Preparing the Liturgy' hymn suggestions on this site really helpful. Thank goodness there are no 'soppy sixties' items listed.
We use 'Laudate' which has a pretty wide choice of hymns both trad. and modern (with a few soppies thown in) but, sadly , some of the familiar words are changed occasionally to make them politically correct, which can sound a bit jarring.

I am trying to introduce some new stuff (very gradually!) and we are in the process of learning the Walker Celtic Liturgy and also Missa de Angelis which some older people still remember. My problem is getting the congregation to 'have a go' as some of them seem almost scared of joining in the singing -or is it because they are indifferent to music at Mass? We still aren't able to sing the Psalm as it's not easy to find willing cantors, but at least we now always sing most parts of the mass.

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Post by docmattc »

oopsorganist wrote:
Is all the seventies stuff rough then? I am getting to like some of the newer things in the CFE and HON. You had better give me some advice before I go off and learn them/ introduce them to our parish.


Don't think all the seventies stuff is rough, maybe just most of it! But we can't be prescriptive about it, one man's drink etc... Its a matter of your judgement oops (and taste), in what will work with your community. Of course that doesn't mean just sticking to what they know!

I was asked a while back if we could do more of the 70s and 80s music because 'we really like it', so occaisionally "God's Spirit is in my heart" et al make an appearance, even though I do have to resist the urge to put the organ on 'tremulants full' and make like the tower ballroom! (I did once and was complimented for 'really making it sing' :lol:

To return to the thread (surely not), alas Nick, I was but a glint in my father's eye in the early 70s :D

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Post by dunstan »

RobH wrote:As someone who has, fairly recently, been "thrown in at the deep end" with regard to playing the organ and choosing our Sunday mass music, I find the 'Preparing the Liturgy' hymn suggestions on this site really helpful.


(Going slightly off topic) Welcome aboard Rob - sounds as if your situation is much as mine was in 2003 when I was suddenly left with sole responsibility for music in my parish, and had to learn about liturgy, take organ lessons and start running a choir. There is lots of advice I could give, but for now I'll give just one piece: do not hesitate to accept offers of help.

Three years on we have a small but varied repertory of Mass settings, and a good number of hymns which the congregation sing with gusto.
It's not a generation gap, it's a taste gap.

RobH
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Post by RobH »

Thanks for encouragement dunstan. I will certainly accept any offers of help regarding the choir. We have, at present, six very nice ladies, some of whom keep requesting (sticking to this thread) very sugary and sloppy hymns of the kind referred to in this topic. I have to be really diplomatic, but firm, otherwise the music would just end up being "our favourite hymns" and a bit tasteless, not fitting in with the Liturgy at all. Like docmatic I have a Tremulant on our organ , but I think its best left alone as it shakes the whole gallery so that my ladies sing with a distinct wobble!!

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Post by musicus »

Nice steer back to the topic there, Rob!

If you find the online suggestions helpful, you might like to see the journal from which they are extracted. Send me a PM (Private Message) with your snail-mail address if you'd like a free sample copy. That goes for anyone else too, of course.
musicus - moderator, Liturgy Matters
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oopsorganist
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thread almost

Post by oopsorganist »

Oh dear Musicus I am going to go off thread as usual.

Rob, life was so much easier before I got the Journal! Now I have to make decisions and find things out. Ignorance is bliss! There's such a lot of music out there and I don't have copies of any of it.

I just have this sad vision of us all playing guitars with our zimmer frames. While the young people sing sensible plain song. My friend Steve says that when we are in the nursing home, we will be singing Rolling Stones and Blondie. And Streets of London probably too. Come to think of it, it is the older people in our church who say, "Oh good, are we having the guitars today, we like a folk Mass!"
uh oh!

oopsorganist
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thread well almost...

Post by oopsorganist »

No
tell a lie

that Communion Song 3 (Inwood) that is beautiful that is and Now in this Banquet (Haugen) that is lovely too. I doubt that I will get them into Advent but at least I know they are there.
uh oh!

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presbyter
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Re: thread well almost...

Post by presbyter »

oopsorganist wrote:Now in this Banquet (Haugen) that is lovely too.


one could argue that it has something of a theological dubium textually and make not pass the LA/Girm test .... no matter how beautiful it sounds

oopsorganist
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maybe thread

Post by oopsorganist »

oh but that White Light Kyrie

that's lovely!
uh oh!

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presbyter
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Re: thread well almost...

Post by presbyter »

presbyter wrote:and make not pass the LA/Girm test


make? I think I mean 'might' (makes mental note to read what he's written before posting :oops: )

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presbyter
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Post by presbyter »

We might not sing 'Streets of London' or 'Blowin' in the wind' at Mass, as some people might have done 35 years ago. Yet the sentiments which gave rise to the inclusion of such songs in the liturgy persist. 'Ordinary' folk seem often to want to express their feelings and their faith through forms of popular music. It's 'where they're at' in their popular piety and their musical tastes 'Now't wrong with that!' in itself.

So at funeral Masses, this song, made popular by Daniel O'Donnell, is increasingly in demand. Objectively, it is well constructed and I can see why musically it has an immediate appeal. It has (to think in terms of 35 or 40 years ago) the same genius of composition behind it which made Lennon & McCartney and Simon & Garfunkel 'great'. It is, to use some of our liturgical criteria, musically noble, simple and beautiful.

But what on earth is it about? Why does this text say something to people in terms of our Christian faith? (and it's faithful, practising Catholics who want this at funerals .... as well as the lapsed) Who is the "You"?


When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary
When troubles come and my heart burdened be
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders
You raise me up... to more than I can be.
You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders
You raise me up... to more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas
And I am strong, when I am on your shoulders
You raise me up... to more than I can be.
You raise me up... to more than I can be.

That text could never be approved for liturgical use.

But there's nothing wrong with the need to express one's faith in terms of popular piety. The Sacred Congregation has published a Directory on it. Perhaps, then, the challenge to authors and composers now is to tap into the desire to express our faith and prayer in populist forms, creating music which is of immediate appeal but not lacking in some artistic merit, and texts which are both beautiful and theologically sound?

Yet having said that, it might be argued that the evangelical musical explosion (Spring Harvest etc...) is trying to do just that, as are certain composers from across the Atlantic, writing for the Catholic church. Often, the results seem to me to produce works which drip with sentimentality: 'nice' music set to words which, if scriptural, can lose their intended impact because of the 'beauty' or 'niceness' of the music and the scriptural text itself being mangled.

In my opinion, the popular 'Now we remain' by David Haas - to give an example - does just that. (Laudate 621) One might state that this is beautiful music. There is a certain attraction in the melody. But textually? For sure, the verses allude to Pauline and Johannine expressions but that scriptural underpinning is weakened, in my opinion, through it being subjected to being sifted by what I consider to be a Pam Ayres of liturgical poetry, putting his own sentimental 'spin' on the Word of God.

I would have to ask the same questions of this song as I would of the Daniel O'Donnell: what on earth is it about? What does it mean? (and the latter especially of the refrain, "We hold the death......." )

So how might we avoid musical sentimentality and its accompanying tendency to produce anodyne texts, yet simultaneously appeal to populist understandings of what is noble, simple and beautiful? Discuss!

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presbyter
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Re: Soppy sixties service sheets

Post by presbyter »

Nick Baty wrote:And what about first communion children singing "host so white, clean and bright..." to Edelweiss?


Am I the only one here to remember this being sung by Philip Duffy with Paul Inwood at the piano .... and a certain lady dancing? This was at a summer school concert. Nick, were you there?

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