Psalm 137: The Oxford University Press Playlist

Songs of exile: a playlist for Psalm 137 Oxford University Press shared some settings of Psalm 137 on their blog, as musical accompaniment to their book about that Psalm, Song of Exile by David Stowe. This is a really useful resource, as it includes some classics that were unmissable, but also things that it would [Read More…]

Frode Fjellheim

I want to share some incredible music by Norwegian composer Frode Fjellheim. Here is “Psalm”: And here is his “Pater Noster”: [Read more…]

Steve Reich, Tehillim

Indiana University has an interesting archive featuring Steve Reich’s exploration of the Psalms. And the recent Past Forward composer spotlight on Reich is also very interesting. [Read more…]

Michael Kiefer, Psalm 22

The composer wrote the piece after experiencing the death of his child. [Read more…]

Review of Psalms and Music

My review of Max Stern’s book Psalms and Music is now available in RBL to SBL members. I inadvertently violated the SBL open access policy in sharing my last review on Academia.edu and so I will not be doing so this time. I will say that, while I did have some criticisms to offer (Stern [Read More…]

Bishop as Composer

The above is a setting of the Psalms known as the “songs of ascent” (or similar titles), by Russian Orthodox bishop and composer Hilarion Alfeyev. Below is his setting of St. Matthew’s Passion. And here is his Christmas Oratorio:     He is also the author of numerous books…   [Read more…]

Moroccan Jewish Psalms

In exploring the traditions of chanting or singing the Psalms and other scriptures, I came across the above YouTube channel which features music of the Sephardic Jewish tradition, more specifically from Morocco. Can you detect that the tonality is not that of Western even-tempered music? You can find demonstrations of the relevant scales (also used [Read More…]

Introducing Metrical Psalms

For the first time since I’ve been teaching, I brought a guitar with me to class and sang to/with my students. Teaching a course on the Bible and music does strange things to one’s pedagogy. I decided to record the class, mainly so that I could see what it was like. Not nearly as bad [Read More…]

My Soul Hath Refuge in Thee, “Psalm 91” by Evelyn Simpson-Currenton

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O Lord Our Lord

I have mentioned before that I will be teaching a new course this semester on the Bible and music. And I also shared a setting I made of texts from Amos, to music that I wrote. The score to the piece is now available on IMSLP. Well, another option for students is to take an existing melody [Read More…]