Tag Archives: music
A blog for thoughts on Music as specifically pertains to Catholic Liturgy.
My kids became involved in the new youth group at our parish. This parish had great catechesis, great liturgy and beautiful music ranging from chant and polyphony to more modern works – all beautiful and always appropriate to the Liturgy. The new youth minister however, wanted to start a praise band. He wanted something that would “reach the kids” and “get them involved”. Some of the kids kind of looked at each other perplexed. Many of them were already involved in the choir and those who weren’t kind of bristled at the idea that they were not involved enough. It is interesting to note that when the Youth Minister suggested a Praise Mass the kids rose up as one voice with a resounding, “No!”
The piano guys
on death and funerals
Beware the wrath of the church organist – musical revenge is sweet
They are the stalwart pillars of the community whose week-in, week-out dedication has kept the country’s choral traditions alive for generations.
By John Bingham, Religious Affairs Editor
7:30AM BST 03 May 2013
While charged with providing spiritually uplifting music to worshippers, it seems many also seize the opportunity to extract subtle revenge on clerics who have displeased them or simply play pranks on congregations.
A survey of churchgoers found that at least half have noticed their organist straying from the path of musical orthodoxy at some point – slipping snippets of heavy metal classics, advertising jingles and even nursery rhymes into hymns and anthems.
In some cases it can be a means of waging musical war with clerics while in others it is simply an effort by bored organists to make the choir laugh.
Christian Research, a polling and research group asked its 2,000 strong “Resonate” panel of churchgoers for their views on church music and organists.
Of those who responded, half said they had noticed an organist slipping unexpected tunes into services.
Among examples cites was that of the organist in Scotland who had fallen out with some of the elders in the Kirk but got his own back by inserting a thinly disguised rendition of “Send in the Clowns” as they processed in for a Sunday service.
Elsewhere, a vicar sacked an organist after he played “Roll out the Barrel” at the funeral of a man known to have been fond of a drink.
In one decidedly high church congregation, an organist punctured the mood of reverence as an elaborately dressed clergyman processed back after the gospel reading – by playing the theme tune to The Simpsons.
Another congregation found themselves passing around the collection plate to the strains of “Money, Money, Money” by Abba.
The survey uncovered examples of Eucharist celebrations livened up with renditions of Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer”; the theme tunes from the Magic Roundabout, Blackadder and Harry Potter and even “I’ve Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts”.
Sung Evensong – widely regarded as the jewel in the crown of English choral music – has been spiced up such unexpected offerings as “I’m a Barbie Girl” and “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles”
One organist who responded confessed to playing hits by Oasis, Billy Bragg and even Kylie Minogue in services but added: “Nobody notices – I do it all the time.”
But when an organist played a slowed-down version of Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious from Mary Poppins, even the most tone deaf members of the congregation eventually recognised, sending them into gales of laughter.
An older bridegroom took it in good humour when the organist played “No one loves a fairy when she’s 40” at his wedding” while candidates at a confirmation service were left perplexed to hear the strains of “I’m a Little Teapot” from the organ loft.
Stephen Goddard, of Christian Research, said: “It’s an oft-repeated adage in church circles – ‘What’s the difference between an organist and a terrorist? -you can negotiate with a terrorist’.
“Hidden from view, your local church organist may appear unassuming and self-deprecating, but like any true artist, he or she can be eccentric, mischievous and very opinionated.
“Mess with him at your peril – he will pull out all the stops to get his own back.”
The poll was conducted ahead of the Christian Resources Exhibition, a trade fair for all things ecclesiastical in London later this month, which will be showpiecing new organs among other things.
The Meenister’s Log
Some years ago the Church of Scotland brought out a supplement to the then main Hymn Book (CH3 – Church Hymnary 3rd edition) – “Songs of God’s People” (aka SOGP ; aka “Soggy Peas”)
It is a mixed bag of praise items to say the least – though there are some excellent hymns in it.
A minister was once doing pulpit supply for me while I was on holiday, and following the Benediction, announced that she and the congregation would sing “you will go out with joy” as she walked back up the aisle. As she did so, she tried to encouraging them to clap at the appropriate points.,
I heard the next week when I was back that hardly anyone participated; most looked at the floor, many folded their arms and some went out by a side door (not going out with joy, but with sullen expressions on their faces)
Here it is – make up your own minds:
On another occasion – actually on more than a couple of occasions, a retired minister who was a member of the congregation, said to me as we shook hands at the church door as the congregation left after Sunday worship “Please, Mr Strachan, not the ‘constipation hymn’ for another few months – we’ve had it too often recently”
He was, of course, referring to the hymn “Bind us Together” – quite suitable, as a friend has pointed out for “Soggy Peas”!
Once we were at an ecumenical gathering (it might have been during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity) held in a neighbouring Church of Scotland – with a sort of “different” kind of service.
I was sitting between a Congregational Minister ,who tended to be quite “up-front” in his comments, and a fellow C of S minister.
It was announced at one point that we were going to sing from Soggy Peas a Zimbabwean hymn: “Jesu tawa pano” – at which point my C of S colleague in a stage whisper said “Jesus twa pianos – what the hell is that about!”
And my neighbour on my other side had to be restrained by me from getting up and leaving, muttering, as he did “What a load of rubbish”
|Jesu, tawa pano;
Jesu, tawa pano;
Jesu, tawa pano;
tawa pano mu zita renyu.Jesus, we are here;
Jesus, we are here;
Jesus, we are here;
we are here for you.
Man in the box- alex n chains
the reaper-blue oyster cult
Not dead yet- monty python
Die Another Day – Madonna
End of the Road – Boys to Men
Crash and Burn – Savage Garden
Dead End Street – Kinks