Hymns vs Tunes

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by alanl58, Jul 12, 2006.

  1. alanl58

    alanl58 Member

    Every time we are asked to play at a "Songs of Praise" I spend hours converting the vicar/priest's hymns into "first lines" and then into "tunes".

    Am I alone finding it a fag converting hymns from a hymn book number, or "first line", into band tunes from the blue Salvation Army books?

    Does anyone have a quick conversion database? If not, would anyone be interested if I put one together?

    Band Secretary
    St Gennys Band

    PS For players who have never had the honour of producing an "Order of Service" for your band, just be appreciative of the poor person who has to do it, and occasionally will get it wrong!
  2. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    I'm assuming that you are considering a conversion of song numbers from a standard hymnal to the SA tune book. If the hymnal is widely used, this might be a very good resource (not sure how hymnals work in British churches - in the US, there are literally thousands of different hymnals in use in various churches).

    <shameless plug>
    If you're looking for the "reverse" index (for each tune, lists which songs in the Songbook), I have this online at www.brasscrest.com/resource/tunebook.html (not the best presentation, an upgrade is in progress!) for both the current (1987 edition) and previous (1953 edition). My indexes are for the American editions, but except for the "American Supplement" tunes they are essentially the same as the British editions.
    </shameless plug>
  3. andyp

    andyp Active Member

    One way is to get hold of the music versions of the hymn book (say the CofE and Methodist ones) these have lists of numbers, first lines and tunes, as well as the metres (number of syllables/notes per line) which gives you useful alternatives in case you haven't got the exact tune.
  4. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    The only thing to watch there are those instances where the tune names are diferent between the various books ;)
  5. Bungle

    Bungle Member

    Unfortunately the book we use "Songs of fellowship" (blue book) by Kingsway music was recently updated, so any database of hymn numbers to first line is outdated. I could 'scan in' the index page for the old and new versions if you like.
  6. andyp

    andyp Active Member

    Yes, that's true!

    We're lucky to have an ex-SA player in the band, plus some regular churchgoers, so someone nearly always knows what a certain hymn/tune is. Mind you it's usually the more modern ones that are difficult to trace!

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