MusicNotes Jan 28-29


January 28-29

Prelude-     Prelude on NETTLETON (Sinner's Call), Gerre Hancock (1934-2012)  


As a meditation before Mass, I have a chorale prelude on this common hymn tune. NETTLETON is sometimes known as Sinner's Call, or Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing, but is found in our Worship hymnal on page 535 as God, We Praise You. This elegant piece is meant to call us into worship, and to set the tone for how God is calling us in the Gospel lesson. Gerre Hancock was one of the most influential organist-composers of this century. A former student of Nadia Boulanger, he held the position as Organist and Choirmaster at St. Thomas Church in New York City for over thirty years, and later became Professor of Organ and Sacred Music at the University of Texas in 1994. He was the pioneer of organ improvisation in this country and is listed in the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. He was also a teacher of mine. He passed away last Saturday at the age of 77.               

Opening Song-         All Hail the Power of Jesus' Name

To begin the Mass, we will sing a familiar hymn to prepare us for the message found in the Gospel. The tune, called CORONATION, was written by Oliver Holden in 1793. British co-worker of John and Charles Wesley, Edward Perronet wrote the text in 1779, which tells of the unsurpassed power in the name of Jesus. This reflects the idea in the Gospel that Jesus is becoming recognized for bringing new authority, new power, and new teaching to his followers, and that, through Jesus, healing, comfort, and salvation are real possibilities. 

Anthem-     Order My Steps, Glenn Burleigh (1949-2007)                

This well-known gospel song, written by Oklahoma-born Glenn Burleigh in the 1990s, has become a classic. It is one of the most popular songs in the history of the Black Gospel tradition. It is a prayer to God to order our lives, from our steps to our thoughts and to our words. This song echoes the message from this weekend's Gospel that God is in control, that Jesus shows us a "new kind of teaching that speaks with authority." If we answer the call of God, then we are open to His blessings, that He has the authority to see beyond human sickness, beyond human fault to bring us closer to Him. Glenn Burleigh, originally from Guthrie, studied at the Univeristy of Oklahoma and at Oklahoma City University. He quickly became one of the leading authorities on African-American spirituals and Gospel Music. Our guest soloist is Tavis Minner, who is often featured as a soloist for the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame, the Tulsa Opera and others. He is also an award-winning music teacher for Tulsa Public Schools, and has created children's music for educational consultants in California.        


Closing Song-           We Are Marching in the Light of God

To send us forth from Mass, we will sing the South African song, Siyahamba, known in English as We Are Marching in the Light of God. This song is one of commitment to God, in our lives outside of weekend Mass. As we recognize the power of the Lord in our lives, we start to commit everything that we do to Him and line up our thoughts and actions with His will and His call. I will play this very rhythmically, but will also base it on a more traditional South African choral style, called isicathamiya, made famous by Ladysmith Black Mambazo.          

Will Buthod
Director of Music
Church of St. Mary
(918) 749 2561, ext 120
1347 E. 49th Pl.
Tulsa, OK 74105

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