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Monday, November 25, 2013

About a Musical Number

Dear Bro Jo,

This is a bit off of what you usually answer questions about but I'm a bit desperate I've been asked to play a musical number next week in Sacrament meeting by my ward's musical coordinator or whatever their calling is technically called.

I don't know where to find some sheet music to play and it needs to have some parts for singers. At least 1 boy and girl singing while I'll be accompanying.

If you know any good places to get some sacrament meeting appropriate music please could you let me know and thanks in advance.

Just names of pieces would be great seeing as I could Google names or anything like it.

Also pointers for how to persuade some of my friends to do this would be greatly appreciated.


- L

Dear L,

Well THAT'S one of the more unique questions I've ever gotten!

The Ward Music Coordinator (or "Chairman"; although sometimes this falls on the "Choir President") is typically the resource for the type of music you're looking for (the person who asked you may indeed hold that calling).

They should have arrangements, parts, and sources for ordering stuff that you want but don't have.

If they're clueless you could also check with your Stake Music Coordinator.

Another resource is your Ward or Stake Library, which is where that type of stuff is supposed to be kept. 

You can also check with your Ward Choir Director and their Stake counterpart.

As for me, I'm a Hymn Book guy. I don't think anything should be presented in a Sacrament meeting that's not in the Hymn Book. That's pretty old school, and not necessarily a "handbook rule", I know, but I hate it when stuff that's too pop or recital-like is presented. Takes away from the sacredness of the meeting for me. 

That said, our Ward Choir sang an arrangement of "My Country "Tis of Thee" yesterday that was really pretty.  A song from the Hymn Book but arranged differently, and I thought that was a good choice.

As for your friends, either ask a small group of people who are really good and willing to practice or ask everyone and have a good time.

If you ask your friends for their help, I'm sure they'll be willing.

Like dating (see the tie in?) if you have a plan it will go much smoother.

Have fun!

Let me know what you pick and how it works out,

- Bro Jo


Laura said...

Not to be the devil's advocate, but what about songs like Come Thou Fount that aren't in the hymnal? Kenneth Cope wrote a tear-jerking song titled "His Hands", and then there's my absolute favorite Christmas song that is not in the hymnal, Oh Holy Night.

Being a professional musician myself, I do agree there are a lot of LDS songs that are too pop-like and definitely not appropriate for Sacrament meeting. But I wouldn't necessarily limit it to just songs that are found in the hymnal. That's just me, though.

Bro Jo said...

Come Thou Fount is one of my all-time favorites. I can't understand why it's no longer in the Hymnal.

And, I'll toss this out there: I don't think every song in the Hymn book is sacrament meeting appropriate.

Here's a couple of exceptions I agree with: God Save the Queen and O Canada. In fact, I can't think of a National Anthem with lyrics (off the top of my head) that I don't think is Sacrament appropriate in the country the service is being held in.

There may be some, but I couldn't name them.

- Bro Jo

PS: My Favorite Christmas Songs include:
Carol of the Bells
Christmas Time is Here

PSS: Readers might find this article from a few years ago interesting:

and I've been told this is a pretty good book:

PSSS: For more information:

Sara said...

i have found to be a great resource!!