Hyperion Records

I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live, Z22
composer
before February 1679
author of text
Psalm 104: 33-35

Recordings
'Purcell: The Complete Anthems and Services, Vol. 10' (CDA66707)
Purcell: The Complete Anthems and Services, Vol. 10
MP3 £3.50FLAC £3.50ALAC £3.50Buy by post £13.99 (ARCHIVE SERVICE) CDA66707  Archive Service; also available on CDS44141/51   Download currently discounted
'Purcell: The Complete Sacred Music' (CDS44141/51)
Purcell: The Complete Sacred Music
MP3 £35.00FLAC £35.00ALAC £35.00Buy by post £40.00 CDS44141/51  11CDs Boxed set (at a special price)  
Details
Track 2 on CDA66707 [3'05] Archive Service; also available on CDS44141/51
Track 2 on CDS44141/51 CD10 [3'05] 11CDs Boxed set (at a special price)

I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live, Z22
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I will sing unto the Lord is an early anthem, written by February 1679. It is found in a large number of contemporary and early eighteenth-century cathedral manuscripts, suggesting that it was widely performed. The reason is not hard to see, for this is a first-rate full anthem, scored for five-part choir with divided trebles, and containing an appealing central verse section.

The triple-time opening is basically homophonic, strong in its joyful affirmation of God’s goodness. The rapid-fire entries of ‘And so’ compellingly build up to ‘shall my words please him’, and are followed by a return to triple-metre homophony at ‘my joy shall be in the Lord’. The text, from Psalm 104, switches to recount the fate that awaits sinners, and Purcell introduces a six-part verse which alternates trios of upper and lower voices and then the full choir in rich, slow-moving harmony; here is delicious writing. But joy is not far away, and the anthem ends exultantly in the swinging triple metre of the opening and with a final, grand statement: ‘Praise the Lord’.

from notes by Robert King ©

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