Love Lifted Me

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Love Lifted Me

for SATB Chorus and Piano

This is a completely new choral-anthem setting of the popular gospel hymn text. The colorful melodies and harmonies are a world apart from the incessant lilting cheerfulness of the original tune to better depict the range and depth of emotions expressed in the text’s story of redemption. The music leads listeners on a emotional journey from the despair of sin’s eternal ruin to the joy of Christ’s saving grace. The chorus concludes with a passionate testimony and witness for Christ.

The music is written for SATB chorus with piano accompaniment and is suitable for most amateur church ensembles as well as more advanced groups. The opening stanza may be sung as a bass/tenor duet or with full men’s sections.

My worship professor often cited the revival era hymn, Love Lifted Me, with its cheerful, lilting melody beneath doleful lines of sin-speckled poetry, as the epitome of poor tune and text pairing. I countered that the point of the hymn is the sinner’s joy in redemption and the happy nature of the music is appropriate to its ultimate message. Yet, my professor’s words lingered over the years to the point that I endeavored to revisit the hymn in consideration of a more functional melding of tune and text. The result is this choral anthem, Love Lifted Me, setting a slightly adapted version of James Rowe’s poetry. Even though the music is completely new, albeit quoting snippets of the original hymn tune, it has an air of familiarity that melds with the text to paint its message in a fresh light. For example, the passages remembering sin and despair are aimless and brooding, while the lines rejoicing over redemption are flowing, energetic, and ebullient. Listen to Love Lifted Me and let your ears be the judge whether this setting expresses the story of personal redemption fittingly.

Arranged for SATB chorus and piano, this anthem fills the role of personal testimony and witness with an evangelistic call to respond to the Gospel. It is suitable for most experienced student and adult mixed choirs.

For your convenience I haven’t set a minimum order quantity for this piece. If you’re singing sacred music I want to believe I can trust you so I’m using the honor system. In return I ask that you purchase just the number of copies you need. If you want a perusal copy, then buy just one. If your choir has six members then order eight: one for you, one for your pianist, and six for your singers. If you have eighty singers then please order eighty-two. Makes sense, right? What about lost copies or added singers? Feel free to buy additional copies if you like but, if your initial purchase was made in good faith, I don’t mind if you print replacement/expansion copies.

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