Keystone 2013 Recordings

Jan 31, 2013 by

We debuted our preview packet at the 2012 Keystone Convention in Bethlehem PA. We’re hoping that this session, from Keystone 2013 in Philadelphia, was the last big singing from the packet before the book is available. It’s interesting to compare these recordings with Keystone 2012.  What a year we’ve had!  Many thanks to Kevin Griffin Moreno for keying and all who stayed and sang with us after a long day. Note that the code before each track name (like “ShH 157”) gives the page number in the forthcoming book. To download a song, start it playing and right-click on “DOWNLOAD MP3.” If you’d like a copy of the preview packet, you can obtain one...

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Committee Picks, part 2: Nora

Jan 22, 2013 by

I have truly had an amazing experience working on this book. This is a list of songs that have really grabbed me right from the beginning for a number of reasons: They are beautiful, they are interesting, I think they are going to sound amazing in a group of singers. Yes, I feel that way about all the songs in the Shenandoah Harmony but these have struck me as early frontrunners! I want to share just a little information about me as a singer (for those of you who haven’t sung with me personally) so you can decide if my list is something you’d be interested in. I often sing alto. That is where my heart is, though I do enjoy singing tenor and, on occasion, even a little treble.  I think one of...

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April 6-7: Potomac River Convention...

Jan 21, 2013 by

Please join us at the Potomac River Sacred Harp Convention at the Grange Hall in Great Falls, VA outside of Washington, DC. The convention will be the first weekend in April, 10am-3:30pm both Saturday & Sunday. Registration starts at 9:30am and the session before the midday potluck will be from The Shenandoah Harmony. Contact John delRe for more information, or Joni Seidenstein for lodging and transportation. Saturday night social TBA. Check out...

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Committee picks, part 1: Rachel...

Jan 13, 2013 by

Now that the book is at the printers, we on the music committee have decided to write a series of posts about the songs we are most excited to be singing!  I got this idea because I always liked seeing “staff picks” at a bookstore. I’ve tried to make a mix of songs that I know we all like and some that are more my individual taste.  So this isn’t the most scientific of lists, but I enjoyed making it! 22b PSALM 30.  This song, probably arranged by Amzi Chapin in the late 1790s, was recommended by our friend Gabriel Kastelle.  Gorgeous and unexpected harmonies… 239 VOICE TO THE SHEPHERDS.  ☜ Click on title to see my post on this song.  It’s rare to find a totally unknown American Christmas carol, and such a beautiful...

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First Annual All-Day Singing from the Shenandoah Harmony...

Jan 11, 2013 by

The First Annual All-Day Singing from The Shenandoah Harmony  will be on Sunday, June 2, 2013 at the Ruritan Hall in Cross Keys, VA, which is located directly across from Ananias Davisson’s gravesite. Davisson was the compiler of the Kentucky Harmony  and lived a few minutes from this site, near Harrisonburg VA. This is a beautiful site with sweeping views. The hall has plaster walls and wooden ceiling and hard floor. The singing is preceded by the Northern Shenandoah Valley All-Day Sacred Harp Singing in Bluemont, VA and a social in nearby Boyce, VA.  Attendees for both days are encouraged to find accommodations near Winchester and carpool to the singing in Cross Keys.  Recommended hotels include the Red Roof Inn, the Best Western Lee-Jackson Inn, and Travelodge, all near the intersection of I-81 and Millwood Pike...

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239 Voice to the Shepherds

Jan 13, 2013 by

It’s rare to find a totally unknown American Christmas carol, and such a beautiful – though challenging – melody to boot.  We found it under the title FREE GRACE on page 36 of George Miller’s Methodist Camp-Meeting Hymn Book from Dayton, Ohio.  The book was copyrighted in 1833 and published in 1841.  Nothing is known about Miller.  There’s a similar song called VOICE TO THE SHEPHERDS in Youngstown, Ohio native Amos S. Hayden‘s Introduction to Sacred Music (Pittsburgh, 1835).  We preferred Hayden’s title and Miller’s arrangement.  Other than adding an alto, we’ve made minimal edits to the song.  Miller wrote out all the held notes; we’ve replaced most of them by fermatas.  We’d like to thank Nikos Pappas for his contributions to this research. Learning the song takes some work.  Here’s a video of members of the...

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