First observe of how many Notes compass the Tune is. Next, the place of your first Note; and how many Notes above & below that: so as you may begin the Tune of your first Note as the rest may be sung in the compass of your and the peoples voices, without Squeaking above, or Grumbling below.

October singing schedule 2015

October should be an as-scheduled month, with First, Second, and Third Sunday singings all in their usual places at the usual times, and Midweek singings planted at St John’s Lutheran every Wednesday night.  If there are any changes, they’ll be on our website and FB group and I’ll track them here.

Some of the NYC singers will be up in Providence this weekend for the New England Convention. Some of us have been discussing the New York State convention, third weekend, but “just outside Utica” is a long difficult way for carless city folks even though we hear the singing space is fantastic.  I’ll be going to the Sadsbury Cooper Book singing at the end of the month, but it looks like I’ll be in town till then.

I’m going to ask our Secretary to send me the minutes of the New York All-Day and hope I can post them soon.

MIdweek singing update, September 23, 2015 – venue change

Wednesday night’s singing, the Yom Kippur singing as one might say, will be at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 20th Street between Eighth and Ninth Avenues, at the usual time, 7 to 9:30.

Brooklyn singing September 13, 2015 — notes

Brooklyn (Joe Beasley) shapenote singing, Sunday, September 13, 2015. At St. Paul’s Church, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, New York.  Singing from THE SACRED HARP, 1991 Denson edition and 2012 Cooper Book Edition [CB], and the Shenandoah Harmony [ShH]). The calls go round the room in this singing.

In contrast to August, and for unknown reasons, we had a small (but sturdy) singing this month, with two singers new to us and who had little previous experience, but who enjoyed themselves: Stephanie and Molly D. Molly is a friend of Lucy O’Leary’s and we sang Ted Mercer’s lovely song O’LEARY, SH 501, written for Lucy’s father.

Enjoying these lists? It was brought to my attention that the Sacred Harp group in Israel is publishing notes of each local singing on its Facebook page.

Present: Locals: Sarah L., Stina, Jon, Alice*, Ann, Aldo, Terry (our lone bass), Paul, me.  New: Stephanie, Molly Decter.  We collected $20, which is more than last month with twice as many singers, so thank you all for your generosity. *This Alice is a newer Alice, but I don’t know her last initial.

Jon pitched the Cooper book and I the Denson book and Shenandoah, except where singers pitched for themselves. Perhaps anticipating the Rosh Hashanah wish for a sweet New Year, it seemed to me an unusually sweet singing, right from the start where there were (momentarily) only women — that is, we chose a lot of sweet, smooth tunes, like ShH 248 SINGING PILGRIM and 151 THORN, which I’m not sure I’d ever sung before, and CB 273 MARTHASVILLE. Stephanie, one of our new singers, chose SH 447 WONDROUS CROSS based on the text (“When I survey the wondrous cross”) and was taken aback during the notes to realize it wasn’t the song she had in mind at all. Not the first time, nor the last, that this sort of thing has happened with newcomers. Happily, we told her, it was at any rate a good one, and there’s no other tune in the book with those words, so we went ahead and sang it.

Opener: 33b        ABBEVILLE    Stina
ShH 92    STAUNTON    Sarah
ShH 151    THORN    nbm
63        CORONATION    Ann
CB 378b    EUREKA    Aldo
CB 558    I’LL PRAISE MY MASTER    Terry
159        WONDROUS LOVE    Stephanie
157         ESSAY    Stina Read the rest of this entry »

September 2015 singing schedule

NYCADS 2015! The New York City All-Day Singing will be on the Saturday before the third Sunday, September 19, at Middle Collegiate Church on Second Avenue and East Seventh Street, at 9:30.  The singing proper will be followed by a Composium and a social (at the Penny Farthing pub) and, on Sunday, by our Third Sunday singing, in the Middle Collegiate building at 2:00.  FB post here. So much wow.

Locals, plan your contributions for Dinner on the Grounds (see Jason Steidl if you have questions or want to help on the day) and let Andre Kuney know if you can host someone and what are the parameters (fluffy cat? four story walkup?).

In other September news, our First Sunday singing will be cancelled as many singers will have travelled to Pennsylvania for the Maidencreek Singing on Saturday and everyone else will be, sensibly, out of town for Labor Day weekend.  Second Sunday in Brooklyn will go ahead as usual for multi-book fans.

Brooklyn singing August 9, 2015 — notes

SprinklesBrooklyn (Joe Beasley) shapenote singing, Sunday, August 9, 2015. At St. Paul’s Church, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, New York.  Singing from THE SACRED HARP, 1991 Denson edition and 2012 Cooper Book Edition [CB], and the Shenandoah Harmony [ShH]). The calls go round the room in this singing.

Quite a lively singing this month, with the alto bravely held mostly solo by Sarah L. I was personally delighted to have my friend Lisa D. singing to my right; I seldom get the chance nowadays — and with Dr. Jon on the other side I felt myself in a positive phalanx of trebles. We had Darryl strengthening us as well for the first half. Several of the Shen and Cooper songs were new to me; I was struck by ShH 168 and 312. We also agreed that we don’t sing 381 SING ON often enough — thanks, Sasha, for reminding us.  Also, for those keeping track, the tune of CB 378b, EUREKA, led by Aldo, is identical to ShH 326t, WE’VE NO ABIDING CITY HERE (not sung this session), though the arrangements differ.

We had some trouble with the timing of CB 348b, BLESSED FOREVER, what with all the dots and the fermatas done and undone. I looked at it just now. I think I would do the bird’s-eyes on the first note of the chorus and the last note of the next measure, and maybe in the fifth bar of the verse, on “-er”. I’d try to be clear in advance. With or without holds, the fit between words and tune stumbles sometimes. Anyone have a different idea? And, for extra credit, who can spot the twin tunes — major and minor versions of the same song?

Present: Locals: Colin, Terry, Ann, Paul, Jon, John, Patrick, Sam, Dick, Eric, Sarah H., Sarah L., Darryl, Lisa D., Andre, Aldo, Jason, me. Visiting: Sasha from Penn., who brought her charming stepfather, Joel, who likes S.J. Perelman. New: Lynn. It’s not clear to me why we collected only $17, but thanks to those who contributed.

Jon pitched the Cooper book and I the Denson book and Shenandoah, except where singers pitched for themselves.

Opener: 37b        LIVERPOOL    nbm
CB 336t    HESTER    Jon
39t        DETROIT    Colin
47b        IDUMEA    Patrick
CB 473    JESUS ROSE    Dick
CB 30t    ROCHESTER    Terry
61        SWEET RIVERS    Sarah L
86        POLAND    Darryl
ShH 312    HERMIT    Lisa D
ShH 162    ALL IS WELL    nbm
CB 430    LAND OF REST    Jon
CB 522     SHADES OF NIGHT    Andre
141        COMPLAINER    Colin
ShH 140b    TEN THOUSAND CHARMS    Jason
38b         WINDHAM    Lynn
ShH 18b    A SONG OF TEXAS    Eric
CB 98        GLORY SHONE AROUND    Aldo
ShH 168     NEW DURHAM    Patrick
CB 497    THE BITTER CUP    Sam
84        AMSTERDAM    Dick
ShH 108    AMAZING GRACE    Sarah L.

BREAK Read the rest of this entry »

August 2015 scheduling (and into September), New York UPDATED

The First Sunday singing at Jimmy’s #43 may be HAS BEEN cancelled for want of participants. Second Sunday Brooklyn will happen on August 9, and I think the way is finally clear for ice cream social following the singing. On August 15, Saturday before Third Sunday, I’ll be at the Central NJ All-Day Singing. It should be a busy day: Denson book in the morning, Shenandoah Harmony in the afternoon, contradance, and social at Rachel and Dean’s.  Fourth weekend, who knows? But the Saturday before Labor Day, September 5, is for Maidencreek as usual.  And don’t forget NYCADS 2015, Saturday, September 15, at Middle Collegiate Church on Seventh Street and 2nd Avenue.2015 CNJ ADS flyer 2

Brooklyn singing, July 12, 2015 — notes

Brooklyn (Joe Beasley) shapenote singing, Sunday, July 12, 2015. At St. Paul’s Church, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn, New York.  Singing from THE SACRED HARP, 1991 Denson edition and 2012 Cooper Book Edition [CB], and the Shenandoah Harmony [ShH]). The calls go round the room in this singing.

At the announcements, attention was drawn to competing singings the final weekend of July, in Central Pennsylvania and Mid-Coast Maine, both of which will use a mix of books and both of which are basically guaranteed to be great. Terry, recognizing that none of us is likely to get to the Jeremiah Ingalls singing in Vermont, made sure to lead an Ingalls tune (PEMBROKE in the ShH). Next week in New York the Third Sunday slot will be filled by a New Songs singing organized by Aldo, and the following Saturday Mary Ellen will host the seven-shape (Christian Harmony & gospel book) singing at Menno House. We looked ahead (just over two months) to NYCADS, our own All-Day singing, on September 19.  We briefly forgot, but Sasha and I both remembered on the street as we lingered, the Central NJ All-Day on August 15, with singing from the Denson Edition and the Shen Harm, a contradance, and a social at Rachel and Dean’s house — bound to be a good time.

Sarah L. had to be with her grandmother, who is ill.  I asked her what we should sing on her behalf.  She said, “Something major, positive and joyful.” I know she likes ShH 114, YOUTHFUL BLESSINGS, which is certainly major and could be called “positive and  joyful” in the somewhat anomalous terms of the tradition, so we did that. “That’s awfully cheerful for ‘we’ll soon be called to die,'” someone said. And Marguerite, whose family business is a marina, asked, “Is there a song about a happy sailor? ‘Cause I couldn’t find it.” “388,” Charles said, “you have to look it up under T for The.” We belted it out for her.

Present: Locals: Colin, Terry, Ann, Paul, Zach, Jon, Charles, Molly, the new Alice, Mary Ellen, Andre, Beth, Marguerite, me. Visiting: Nathan B, from Minn.; Sasha and Bethany, from Penn.; Noam, from Tel Aviv. Brand new: Yaprak. Thanks to all for their generosity. We collected 46 bucks, so I’ll make a $120 contribution for the quarter.

Jon pitched the Cooper book, Nathan the Shenandoah, and I the Denson book, except where singers pitched for themselves.

Opener: 56t        COLUMBIANA    nbm
42        CLAMANDA    Nathan
39t        DETROIT    Colin
49t        OLD HUNDRED    Zach
CB 30t    ROCHESTER    Terry
ShH 85    THE HARVEST FIELD    Bethany
CB 500    SWEET BY & BY    Mary Ellen
ShH 23    WESLEY    Ann
159         WONDROUS LOVE    Noam
CB 39        EDEN OF LOVE    nbm
CB 38t    SESSIONS    Jon
ShH 260t    CONFLICT    Paul
ShH 197    SIXTY-FIVE SOUTH    Nathan
ShH 48    CAPTAIN KIDD    Colin
284        GARDEN HYMN    Zach
540        NIDRAH    Terry
183        GREENWICH    Andre
324        NORTH PORT    Bethany
CB 501    THAT BEAUTIFUL LAND    Mary Ellen
ShH 258    LAMENTATION    Ann
268        DAVID’S LAMENTATION    Alice
547        GRANVILLE    Noam
ShH 114    YOUTHFUL BLESSINGS    nbm (for Sarah L.)
CB 497    THE BITTER CUP    Jon
CB 422t    A SONG OF TEXAS    Charles
CB 54t    PALMETTO    Sasha


Callback: ShH 147    RIVER OF JORDAN    nbm
ShH 105    PETITION    Nathan
ShH 226    THORNY DESERT    Colin
ShH 133    SHOUTING PILGRIM    Charles
118         STOCKWOOD    Molly
144        JUBILEE    Zach
ShH 127    PEMBROKE    Terry
328        PRAISE GOD    Sasha
ShH 119b    LEGACY    Bethany
ShH 287    KITTERY    Ann
155        NORTHFIELD    Alice
535        SHAWMUT    Noam
CB 273    MARTHASVILLE    nbm
ShH 248t    SINGING PILGRIM    Jon
33b        ABBEVILLE    Nathan
40        LENOX    Colin
60        DAY OF WORSHIP    Charles
114        SAINT’S DELIGHT    Molly
111b        TO DIE NO MORE    Zach
198        GREEN STREET    Terry
55        SISTER’S FAREWELL    Andre
129        HEAVENLY ARMOR    Bethany
388        HAPPY SAILOR    Marguerite
293        AKERS    Alice
ShH 404t    PARADISE    nbm
Closer: 178    AFRICA    Noam

Totals: 27 plus 26 for 53 songs, a half dozen more than usual; 27 Denson, 10 Cooper, 16 Shen Harm.  I see that I used 56t COLUMBIANA as the opener as in June, and ShH 147 RIVER OF JORDAN as the callback as in May.  In addition there were five Denson duplicates from June (39t, 48t, 111b, 114, 388), but none from May; no Cooper duplicates from June but three from May (54t, 273, 501); and one ShH triplicate from both May and June (147).


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