Morning Prayer, No Chant

Deacon Greg emailed me yesterday that one of his readers wished he would send him to someone podcasting hours of the Divine Office without chant.

Well, I never said I was much of a singer, so I’m not hurt. But for this morning, to please this reader, I bring you Morning Prayer Without the Chant.

Let me know which you prefer. If people would rather I not chant, I’ll just speak the Offices.

And once more, please – I’m really serious – please let me know if these things are unlistenable, either because of hums, hisses and whines (not yours, the audio’s) or because I just sound ugh. I’d rather know the truth than hear polite fiction. If I’m making an ass of myself, please let me know!

Once again, I’m sorry for the less-than-stellar recording. My computer is very old and my headset came with my Rosetta Stone software, so between that stuff and my own rackety voice, we’re starting off with a solid “B,” here, and hoping for the best. But I’m saving up for new equipment!

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • lourdes

    You have a lovely voice…keep chanting!! And thank you so much for doing the podcast. I’ve been very lax in keeping up with the liturgy of the hours lately and your podcasts are a help. The chanting reminds me of visiting the Sisters of Life and the cloistered Carmelite sisters in Brooklyn. Their voices sound so beautiful in chant. Thank you.

  • Kevin

    I agree with lourdes: you have a lovely voice, speaking and chanting (singing). Your accent takes me home to the New York of my youth, or maybe that’s due to the fact that your voice sounds surprising young, given the quality and depth of your writing. This was exactly what I needed this morning.

    [whud accent? - admin]

  • Kevin

    I meant to say “surprisingly,” but what’s an adjective versus an adverb between bloggers.

  • scaron

    Spot on. Keep it up! I love your voice, and echo how “young” it sounds!

    Your obvious reverance, and the beauty of your material (can’t beat good material!) more than make up for any recording quality issues.

  • missionman

    I’ve been reading you for awhile now and have admired your writing voice for some time, but your actual speaking voice is really quite lovely. For some the eyes are the window to the soul, but for me it’s the voice, and I can certainly hear the depth of your faith. Your singing voice is also very nice as well.

    I think you should just do what you want. But, for what it’s worth, I would perfer the way you did it today rather than yesterday. Extended chanting for me is better in a community setting. There were some high-pitched noises coming through, but it wasn’t that bad, and didn’t distract from the praying.

    Keep up the good work!

  • MaxedOutMama

    I like both ways, but I think the chant is best. However, for those who have not heard these prayers, it’s possible that the spoken version will be clearer – they might miss a few words of the chant.

    However you do it, keep it up. It has struck me forcefully over the last week or two that the political yammer is the product of an internal confusion. I think many don’t know how to pray, and never get a moment’s surcease from the babble of their own and everyone else’s confused and angry voices.

    The recording quality is fine. Yes, it has that “homemade” quality to it. All the better.

  • Klaire

    Elizabeth, how do you know that the person who wants the office “straight up” simply isn’t asking because chant takes twice as long? I suspect it might just be a “time factor thing.”

    If it is because he doesn’t like your “what’s not to like” voice, well, then all the more reason to be praying the office. We can all benefit from every and all things not being “just to our liking.”

    So there you have it!

    [I really was not offended, as I said in the podcast; I was joking but it was super early AM and I hadn't slept yet (still haven't) so maybe it didn't' sound like a joke. I feel badly, now, because the man thinks that he upset me. He really didn't. I just want to know if the thing sounds bad, and that maybe he couldn't stand it. -admin]

  • oddball

    My Dear Anchoress,
    The sound quality was fine, and I was delighted by the the chant.
    Have a Blessed day! oddball

  • Joseph

    I echo the above sentiments. I not only think you have a very nice singing voice, I think it’s getting better with practice. Your reading voice is also very good. It’s pitch is a tad lower than your speaking voice and focusing on the text clearly gets you more relaxed. Speaking directly to the mike is always the hardest. Before first hearing you, I, too, had pictured you as a contralto.

    It may be that my tiny Asus eee pc laptop does not carry over the sound system difficulties you speak of, but it sounds just fine in my headset.

    What with the solemnity of the day and all, I was profoundly moved by that podcast. I found myself starting to cry in the middle of it. That hasn’t happened to me in a long time.

    And as to your accent, I’ve never known anyone from Long Giland who had one, and certainly not one nearly as strong as mine, which is a flat as Kansas and nasal as an angry bumblebee.

    Keep singing, do please.

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  • TomSFO

    Keep chanting, great voice. Strange, I must have an old Breviary. It does not have the feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary. Thanks for you podcasts and I’ve enjoyed your posts for a long time.