William Billings

PDF of Adams

An Anthem. Joel, 1st and 2d Chap. Suitable for Fast.
from The Continental Harmony, 1794
Titled “Sanctify a Fast” in The Complete Works of William Billings, this is one of Billings’s longest works (performance time approx. 8:15).
PDF of Anthem Suitable for Fast

with original patriotic words by Billings
PDF of Chester (patriotic words)

from Suffolk Harmony
PDF of Madrid in four-shape notes

The first part is from Music in Miniature; the second part is a bass-and-tenor composition found in Billings’ manuscripts, to which I added counter and treble parts. The whole is in the style of many of Billings’ fuguing tunes, in which a fuguing section is appended to a a complete (all four lines of the stanza) plain tune. The whole has proved to be very enjoyable to sing.
PDF of Morpheus


Stephen Jenks

East Windsor (pain tune)
PDF of East Windsor


Daniel Read

Stafford (fuguing tune) with alternate words
The words printed for Stafford in The Scared Harp reflect an outmoded supersessionist theology, as well as unpleasant anti-Jewish sentiments. However, the next two verses from the original Isaac Watts poem do not have these problems. This version of Stafford includes those next two verses.
PDF of Stafford with alternate words


John Tufts

100 Psalm Tune (plain tune)
Irving Lowens argued that this may well be the first published composition by an American composer. It was written for the early Singing School movement, and thus deserves notice by Sacred Harp and other shape note singers.
PDF of 100 Psalm Tune


Elisha West

Death’s Alarm (plain tune)
from Beauties of Harmony
PDF of Death’s Alarm



William Walker and The Southern Harmony

Very different from the cleaned-up version of “Friendship” in The Shenandoah Harmony. Walker’s original 3-part version is a fine example of what Dr. Neely Bruce means when he talks about “Sacred Harp as Experimental Music.”

Star in the East
arr. by William Walker in The Southern Harmony
The version included here is the earlier 3-part version; Walker’s later version with an added alto part is less spare harmonically
PDF of Star in the East


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