Saturday, July 31, 2004

New Files

After struggling over some changes today, I trashed most of them and went back to the original version of this song, more or less. So both round-note and shape-note versions of "My Heart Is Steadfast" have been added to the files section. A midi version will be forthcoming when I can get around to it.

Tomorrow might be busy. I don't do much here during the week, so if I don't get the midi version up tomorrow, it will probably not be here until next weekend.

Still Songstering

I thought I would have another song ready for posting today, because I thought it was finished and would only require some tweaking of the print to make it look good before I uploaded it. But alas, I decided there were bits that could be better, so I have been touching it up slowly, a little at a time. Maybe next week.

It is a one-liner. Another term I just made up, meaning it doesn't have stanzas and a chorus in the traditional style. It has only one line sung straight through, and is taken from Psalm 108.

The Shape of Things

Someone had asked me about shape notes. There are actually several shape styles, but the one I refer to is the 7-shape system. Information on shape notes can be found at Christianity - Shape Notes Top Links. This site has a load of links regarding shape note singing.

If you take a look at any of the files here you can get the idea. Each note of the scale has its own particular shape (Do is an equilateral triangle, Mi is a diamond, etc.).

There are still a few publishers who sell hymnals in this style, most notably Howard Publishing, publishers of Songs of Faith and Praise.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

What I've been reading.

For lack of anything better to post, lately I've been reading the Book of Acts, various Psalms, and occasionally progressing slowly through "In the Company of Soldiers" and "The Dead Sea Scrolls." I have a hard time sticking to just one book at a time.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

What do I have in my music collection?

Someone might be curious. And I figure if I list 5 albums/CDs per week, it should keep me going for about 3 years. These will be listed in no particular order, except that most of them should be more or less alphabetical. I'll start with the records (that's a 12-inch wide, flat, round piece of vinyl with grooves on it, you know, they used to record music that way, hence: "records"). ;-) So here we go:
David Bowie--Pinups
Syd Barrett--The Madcap Laughs/Barrett
Jon Anderson--3 Ships
Jethro Tull--Aqualung
The Eagles--Greatest Hits 1971-1975

I said they should be more or less alphabetical. I don't know how Jethro Tull and the Eagles got put there at the beginning, but then I haven't reorganized the collection in a while.

Saturday, July 24, 2004

Site Feed Fixed

I just noticed that I had forgotten to reset the site feed for the new url. So now it's fixed. Not that anyone has actually subscribed yet, but still...

Bible Versions

Bible Versions at "There are so many versions, which is right? Although there are still those who will insist on the King James Version, also known as the KJV, an important trend during the 20th and 21st centuries has been an abandonment of this longstanding tradition in favor of the KJV...With the discovery of older and better manuscripts, giving the translator a more accurate basis for translation, the Bibles of today may be closer to the original intent of the author than were those of a hundred years ago."

This site has information on the origins of more than 20 different Bible versions, in case you've been wondering what the New Revised Standard is, anyway.

Files Update

The round-note version of "We Gather Now" has been added.

Friday, July 23, 2004

New Files

So the first of the files have been added. This is a hymn called "We Gather Now to Praise the Lord." I write as I have been taught, using the rules of classical four-part harmony. I don't write pop songs with "religious" lyrics; this is just a good old-fashioned hymn (at least, I hope it's good). I write in shape notes because that's what I'm most comfortable with. Tomorrow I plan on posting a round-note version also, so anyone who is interested can use whichever one they are most comfortable with. I also don't write instrumental accompaniment. If you want to do that, it's your business, I only ask that you don't republish it with any such accompaniment, under the terms of the Creative Commons License.

This print-out is not perfect. There are bits here and there where you may want to use white-out to clean up the print (like all the long underlines in the chorus). Also note that with the software I'm using (more on that later), I can't insert a rest unless both voices are resting in one staff, so in the eighth full measure (right where the chorus starts) there should be a quarter rest in the alto part. You might want to hand-write a quarter rest in there. There is also one place in which Do and Re are right on top of each other, instead of slightly staggered as they should be with adjacent notes. This is another small issue with the software--unless I just haven't figured it out yet.

I've also included a midi version with each voice on its own track so you can use it for learning purposes, if desired. With this midi version it should be easy to mute or solo specific tracks, or change the instruments for the tracks, or whatever you wish, just to help learn the song. And as always, if you find an error in either the pdf or the midi, please let me know so I can correct it.

I should have two more songs ready to post fairly soon.