While brass bands have always had a special “way” with hymn tunes, "Sacred" breaks new ground, lending renewed dignity to music that has perhaps, for some, become over-familiar. This is an album of original compositions and arrangements that take us far beyond “The Red Hymn Book”. It is hoped that listeners will find pleasure, comfort and perhaps even inspiration herein.
I know thou art Mine: Canadian Leonard Ballantine is one of many fine Salvationist arrangers and writers. This setting is among the banding fraternity’s most popular hymn arrangements.
Thomas Rive, a former lecturer in music at Auckland University, is one of New Zealand’s leading arrangers of hymn tunes.
: Goff Richards is a lecturer in music at Leeds University. His writing for brass band represents some of the most significant in the repertoire. This arrangement of Crimond has all the hallmarks of a master writer.
The Day Thou Gavest (St. Clement): is an all-time favourite. Geoffrey Whitham of The Yorkshire Building Society Band, commissioned this arrangement by Philip Wilby.
The Kingdom Triumphant
: This work falls into three main parts; 1. Vision of Judgement (introducing an old-time song, The Blast of the Trumpet); 2, Remembrance of the first advent (O come, O come, Immanuel); 3. Vision of the Second Advent (Lo, He comes with clouds descending)”.
A Psalm of Praise:
James Curnow uses the tune Praise My Soul as the melodic centre-point of this tone poem. Jagged rhythmic semiquavers lead to a smooth cornet melody and a tender adagio. The work ends triumphantly.
Abide with Me
: With his own fledgeling talents nurtured in the Woolston Junior Band, Kenneth Young is now one of New Zealand’s most sought-after composers. The setting of this well-loved hymn was written as a 55th Wedding Anniversary gift for his parents.
This tune was written in 1879 by Welshman James Parry. The name is that of the Welsh town where Parry was employed in the music department of the University of Wales. New Zealand arranger James McGregor was responsible for many significant hymn arrangements in the late 1980s.
: Jessie Irvine’s “Crimond” is named after the Parish in Scotland where her father was a Presbyterian Minister. This arrangement is by Scottish composer Peter Graham. The tune Crimond is introduced with reference to Eric Ball’s beautiful melody from his Resurgam.
Just as I am
Heaton’s Meditation – Just as I Am has become a favourite in civilian brass bands since the opening-up of Salvationist publications. Heaton’s craftsmanship, humility, sincerity and deep spirituality are all evident in this work.
My Strength My Tower:
The name Goffin is synonymous with brass bands in New Zealand. Sir Dean Goffin’s brother, Norman, was a Life Member of the Woolston Band, The Onslow Band and the New Zealand Brass Bands Association. Sir Dean had an illustrious career in the Salvation Army, both as a composer and as an administrator. My Strength, My Tower is not performed often, but it is a work equal in standing to his Rhapsody in Brass. There is some conjecture that My Strength, My Tower was secular in its inception and was slanted thereafter to fit the publishing criteria of the Salvation Army. No matter, this work has earned its place as one of New Zealand’s finest compositions for brass band.
Whilst living only 31 years, Schubert was nevertheless a prolific composer. This Sanctus is taken from his German Mass in F. The Arrangement is by American James Curnow.