Monday, March 29, 2010
In the Psalm of My Hand
Did you know that there are 150 Psalms in the Bible?
Did you know that the book of Psalms is often referred to as the songbook of Israel’s Second Temple, and that the literary genre known as Psalms began during the Babylonian Exile (1030 – 962 BCE)?
John Tesh would call that some very good Water Cooler material!
As a songbook, Psalms isn’t terribly long on melody, although there has been an attempt to work out some sort of melodic system; however, this book provides a composer with a potential 150 sets of lyrics!
Recently, I completed a set of 10 anthems based on the Psalms 20 – 29. My working title for it is “Psalms: The 20-Something Collection”. The challenge was to give each one its own musical “voice”.
One of these pieces was written over 30 years ago (not quite as ancient as the lyrics), and the last one was completed in March of this year. They are all for SAB voices and piano…no guitar. I’m hoping that a publisher will be interested in the idea, but I plan to make these available soon either way.
Do you have a favorite Psalm? Or a Psalm story? Why not share it here.