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The ECS Publishing Psalm Songs Series

The Psalm Songs Series are newly composed settings of fresh translations of the Psalms, many of which are written by the composers themselves. Others are taken from published new translations.

This is an ongoing series.

Note: Titles with a link may be viewed in their entirety.

Also of interest: Jewish Choral Music including the Mark Zuckerman Yiddish Choral Series

The Series:

Psalm 1; ARNATT, Ronald; #5463; Unison or Cantor, Congregation, Optional Soprano Descant and keyboard

Psalm 1; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5367; Mezzo-Soprano and Tenor Soli & SATB chorus

Psalm 8; ARNATT, Ronald; #5413; Congregation, SATB, Keyboard

Psalm 13 (How Long Will You Forget Me?); ARNATT, Ronald; #5402; Two-part Mixed Chorus & Organ
Using the Psalm translation by Christopher L. Webber, this very accessible setting may be sung with or without the second part.

Psalm 15; ARNATT, Ronald; #5414; Solo Voice, SATB, Congregation, Organ

Psalm 16 (Protect Me, O God); MARSHALL, Jane; #5736; SATB
Jane Marshall continues to write significant and meaningful musical settings. This one, a song of trust and deliverance, has its mood set immediately by the continued use of the augmented second in its recurring melody, a harmonic reference to Jewish music.

Psalm 17; ARNATT, Ronald; #5415; Congregation, SATB, Organ, Optional Cantor

Psalm 23; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5316; SATB divisi

Psalm 23: The Lord Is My Shepherd; MOLLICONE, Henry; #5760; SATB, Piano
"After a short illness last year, I felt the need to work with a spiritual and inspirational text. I began looking at the Psalms and almost immediately came upon Psalm 23. My mother having passed away within the last year, the Psalm touched me in a deep way, and I quickly sketched the three movements. Although the pieces touch upon various moods, the underlying feeling is one of hope and optimism. Its musical language is tonal and direct, and intended to express clearly the beauty of the text."

Psalm 24; ARNATT, Ronald; #5416; Soprano Solo, SATB, Congregation
“The text of this Psalm is taken from the Psalter for the Christian People, an inclusive language revision of the Book of Common Prayer 1979 Psalter. The music was written on February 20, 1998 for the ongoing ECS Publishing Psalm Songs series.
This setting is for Congregation, SATB Choir and Soprano soloist, but it can be adapted in many ways to suit the particular needs of the performers. Because congregations are sometimes a little queasy about singing without accompaniment, the refrain has an optional keyboard part for this purpose; the organ tray be used throughout if needed. There are two verses for S/A and two for T/B; these may be sung as duets by solo voices. Verse 7 has the choir divided (SSAATTBB); many choirs have insufficient personnel to divide three sections so an alternative version for SATB has been provided. The piece is both tuneful and rhythmic, using meter changes to enhance the natural pulse of stressed and unstressed syllables. Accessible to the average choir. (Program notes by Ronald Arnatt)

Psalm 50; ARMATT, Ronald; #5403; Congregation, Keyboard, Optional Descant

Psalm 67; ARNATT, Ronald; #5457; Congregation, SATB, Organ
Completed in 1998, Psalm 67 was composed expressly for the ECS Publishing Psalm Songs series. The distinctive translation used here is by Eugene Peterson from The Message published by NavPress during the early to mid 1990’s. The edition includes a page containing the Refrain which may be extracted and produced free of charge for congregational use.

Psalm 67; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5466; SATB, Organ

Psalm 84; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #6065; SATB
Completed in 2002, Psalm 84 was composed expressly for the ECS Publishing Psalm Songs Series. One passage in particular contains an unusual translation. The King James version of this passage reads "Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools." My version reads "Those passing through the depths of Hell make it into a wellspring with their tears; even they will encompass their teacher with their blessings." The latter is informed by the writings of the ancient Hebrew sage, Rashi. According to him, sinners are sent to the bottom of Hades (also known as Baca, or the Valley of Weeping) where they cry because of the suffering and distress they endure there. Then they come to understand the foolishness of their ways and glorify and bless the Lord because of divine justice. Their teacher is none other than God.

Psalm 100 (Be Joyful in the Lord); ARNATT, Ronald; #5460; Congregation, SATB, Organ
Using his own Psalm translation, Ronald Arnatt has created another very practical setting for our Psalm Songs Series which may be sung with or without congregational participation. The antiphon for congregational use appears at the bottom of the last page and may be photocopied free of charge.

Psalm 100; SHIELDS, Valerie; #5782; Unison or 2-part Children; Keyboard, 1 or 2 optional Instruments in C, optional Dancers
This setting of Psalm 100 for children has been written so that the Scottish folk tune (Jimmy Allen) may be sung while dancers perform a contradance, a traditional dance form which evolved from Irish set dances and Scottish reels. This particular dance is named Jefferson and Liberty and is an interpretation of a dance from Colonial America. The duration of the dance is determined by the number of repeats utilized.

Psalm 116 (Verse 16) (Truly Lord, I Am Free / Ana Adonai); APPLEBAUM, Robert; #6116; SA soli, SATB

Psalm 117; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5775; SATB

Psalm 117; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5776; SSAA

Psalm 117; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5754; TTBB

Psalm 119 (Verses 41-48); ARNATT, Ronald; #5458; Congregation, Solo Voice (or Unison) & keyboard
Completed in 1998, Psalm 119 (Verses 41-48) was composed expressly for the ECS Publishing Psalm Songs series. The distinctive translation used here is by Eugene Peterson from The Message published by NavPress during the early to mid 1990’s. The edition includes a page containing the Refrain which may be extracted and produced free of charge for congregational use.

Psalm 119; ARNATT, Ronald; #5404; Congregation, Organ, SATB

Psalm 121 (I Lift My Eyes); ARNATT, Ronald; #5475; Mezzo-Soprano or Soprano Solo, SATB chorus & organ

Psalm 121 (My Help Comes From the Lord); GIBSON, Paul; #5987; SAB & organ
“To honor the Right Reverend Warren and Alice Sautebin, a new setting of Psalm 121 was commissioned by their children (and spouses): David and Karen Sautebin, Bruce and Christine Sautebin, Gordon and Carol Sautebin Wright, and David and Anne Tomlinson. My Help Comes From the Lord was presented as a Christmas gift in 2001. The premiere took place in the Sautebins’ home church, Sturgeon Bay Moravian Church, Wisconsin, on August 18, 2002, sung by the church choir augmented by members of the extended Sautebin family, conducted by Anne Tomlinson, and accompanied by Robert Nickel, music director at the church.”
“In recognition of the Sautebins’ life-long devotion to the Moravian Church, this setting incorporates a passage from The Christian Life, a traditional Moravian hymn that sets a paraphrase of Psalm 121 to the tune Amsterdam. Psalm 121 has been particularly meaningful in the prayer life of the Sautebin family.”

Psalm 121; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5382; SATB divisi

Psalm 123; ARNATT, Ronald; #5405; Congregation & keyboard or SATB unaccompanied

Psalm 126; ARNATT, Ronald; #5406; Congregation, Optional SATB, Optional Descant, Organ

Psalm 128; ARNATT, Ronald; #5417; Cantor, Congregation, Choir, Keyboard

Psalm 130 (Waiting and Watching); ARNATT, Ronald; #5459; Congregation, Baritone Solo, SATB & keyboard

Psalm 130; ARNATT, Ronald; #5418; Cantor, Congregation, Choir, Organ

Psalm 130; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5676; Baritone Solo, SATB
Completed in 1999, Psalm 130 was composed expressly for the ECS Publishing Psalm Songs Series. "It was written with ease of performance in mind. The piece is in a simple A-B-A form and there is no divisi writing.Through the music I intend to express both the urgency and the hope of the text."

Psalm 146; HOFFMAN, Stanley M.; #5677; SATB divisi

Psalm 148; ARNATT, Ronald; #5674; SATB, Congregation, Organ

Psalm 149; ARNATT, Ronald; #5407; SATB, Keyboard