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Hear my words, ye people

1894; for the Festival of the Salisbury Diocesan Choral Association; first performed on 10 May 1894 with organ and brass accompaniment
brass arrangement
author of text
verses from Job & Isaiah
author of text
Psalm 150 (metrical setting)

The anthem Hear my words, ye people was written for the Festival of the Salisbury Diocesan Choral Association in 1894. Drawing on texts from Job, Isaiah and the Psalms, Parry concluded the anthem with Sir Henry Baker’s words ‘O praise ye the Lord, praise him in the height’, a paraphrase of Psalm 150, which first appeared as a hymn in the second edition of Hymns Ancient and Modern in 1875, though with a tune by Henry Gauntlett. Parry’s well-known tune, LAUDATE DOMINUM, became associated with the hymn when it was published sometime later, in 1915. Continuing in the tradition of those large-scale verse-anthem models of S S Wesley and Stainer, the choral fabric of Hear my words is interspersed with two extensive ‘verses’, the first for solo bass (‘Clouds and darkness are round about him’), the second, more penitent in mood, for solo soprano (‘He delivered the poor in his affliction’), here sung by trebles alone. The choral portion was also conceived for two contrasting bodies of singers, the larger one of 2,000 singers in which the music is deliberately less complex, and a semi-chorus of 400 voices where the choral writing is more demanding. Much of the accompaniment to the anthem is provided by the organ, which has a major role to play in the symphonic introduction and the support for the soloists, but at the first performance on 10 May 1894 the organist, Charles Frederick South, was joined by the band of the Royal Marines from Portsmouth whose presence can be felt not only in the grandiloquent conclusion, but also in moments of awe-inspiring splendour (notably the bracing ritornello ‘The Lord’s seat is in heaven’). Parry’s original scoring for brass, organ and timpani has, since then, remained largely forgotten, so in this recording we have the opportunity to experience something of its original conception (in an arrangement by Grayston Ives, after the edition by Jeremy Dibble from Parry’s autograph score in the Royal College of Music).

from notes by Jeremy Dibble © 2015


The tree
SIGCD691Download only Available Friday 19 November 2021
A Festival of Psalms
SIGCD279Download only
English Hymn Anthems
Studio Master: KGS0004Download onlyStudio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Evensong Live 2015
Studio Master: KGS0011Download onlyStudio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Hear my words
SIGCD115Download only
Parry: I was glad & other choral works
Studio Master: CDA68089Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Parry: Sacred choral music
CDA66273Archive Service
The English Anthem, Vol. 4
CDA66678Archive Service


Track 10 on SIGCD691 [16'25] Download only Available Friday 19 November 2021
Track 10 on CDA66273 [15'13] Archive Service
Track 13 on CDA66678 [16'40] Archive Service
Track 4 on CDA68089 [15'30]
Track 1 on KGS0004 [14'42] Download only
Track 11 on KGS0011 [14'35] Download only
Track 1 on SIGCD115 [15'03] Download only
Track 8 on SIGCD279 [15'14] Download only

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