It’s March! You know what that means: St. Patrick’s Day is on its way! I’d like to say Spring is also on its way, but let’s just say I’m not holding my breath. Meanwhile, enjoy this traditional Irish tune that’s most often a fiddle tune, today played on zither!
This beautiful hymn was written by Charles Wesley. The text was first published with the subtitle “A Child’s Prayer,” in “Hymns and Sacred Poems,” in 1742. The melody was composed by Martin Shaw in 1876.
My arrangement begins with the melody on alto recorder, then a viola and recorder duet, a solo on lyre, and ends with a recorder duet. This lovely melody would be appropriate for a lullaby, as well as this hymn. I hope you enjoy it!
This song began as a poem I wrote, probably in 2002. Originally it had only 2 stanzas.
In 2003 I composed the music on a small harp. In my original accompaniment, the voice and harp were in unison, both carrying the melody. Last year I added verses 3 and 4, and wrote the descant accompaniment you hear while I sing.
Creative works, like people, can and do evolve!
I hope you enjoy “Knowledge and Love” with lyre accompaniment!
Knowledge and Love – Lyrics
1. Knowledge is what helps us grow through the years.
It tells us some things can’t be true.
Love is what keeps us strong.
Hold it all the day long,
Showing your life as the proof.
2. Knowledge may disappear time and again,
But of this we all can be sure.
Love makes no other claim,
Simply that it remains,
Infinite Life evermore.
3. “Knowledge is power,” they say. And it is.
But not all the mind can conceive.
Love is the Pow’r of Life,
Making the Spirit bright.
Ask, and you shall receive!
4. Love is within you, and knowledge is, too!
They come from the Life of the One.
Present within your mind,
God is the One you find.
Love is his Will ever done.
“The Sheep under the Snow” is a Manx folk song called “Ny Kirree fo Niaghtey.” Please don’t ask me how to pronounce that! It’s a haunting melody I heard for the first time a few days ago. Do yourself a favor and avoid the lyrics, because they are so sad… Needless to say, I’m not posting them here.
This piece by Johann Sebastian Bach needs no introduction. There are other sections that are not as well known, but this segment is the most popular. It was one of the first of many simplified Bach pieces I learned as an early piano student. I still enjoy playing it, more than 26 years later.
I hope you enjoy this arrangement played first as a duet on alto recorder, then on lyre, next on zither, and ending with the recorder duet!
I would have waited to post this hymn closer to Easter, if I had realized before recording it that it’s an Easter hymn. However, it’s also an Advent hymn, which I knew, entitled “Come Thou Long Expected Jesus.” In either case, the tune is a traditional Welsh melody called “Hyfrydol.”
Today you can clearly hear the difference between Oriole (soprano) and alto recorder. I play the melody as a solo on each of these instruments, then on viola, and end with zither.
Please feel free to share in the comments whether you prefer one recorder over the other! I prefer the warmer sound of the alto myself, but the Oriole is easier to play, with a shorter finger stretch. They’re also in different keys, with the Oriole in C and the alto in F.
This traditional folk song is also known as “One Morning in May,” “The Bold Grenadier,” and other titles. The tune is an Irish air, appearing in print in Stanford’s 1905 edition of George Petrie’s song collection.
I hope you enjoy this tune on Oriole (soprano) recorder, viola, and zither!
I first heard this 17th-century folk song as a child. Believe it or not, it was part of an Elementary School book and CD set we often used in music class. The version on the CD was sung a cappella by a solo tenor voice. It was hauntingly done, but I found the song disturbing, because of the lyrics.
While I still think the song tells a bittersweet story, it’s a beautiful melody that never left me.
I hope you enjoy hearing “Barbara Allen” on Oriole (soprano) recorder and zither!
You probably don’t recognize the name, Judson W. Van de Venter. I know I didn’t. However, you might recognize the hymn, “I Surrender All.” Written in 1896, it is one of his most famous hymns, still widely sung today. According to Discipleship Ministries | History of Hymns,
this hymn was influential in the ministry of Rev. Billy Graham.
I hope you enjoy this contemplative arrangement played on lyre!