Psalms for Feasts and Seasons
This collection of 22 psalms cover all the seasons of the church's year. They were composed by Christopher Willcock, a Jesuit priest and graduate in music composition.
Christopher Willcock directs the Julian Singers, using various voice groupings to present the psalms. They are accompanied by organ, flute and guitar.
Christopher Willcock's sense of good melody and harmony makes his music easily accessible to congregations and modest choral forces, as well as to more competent groups.
INTRODUCTION TO PSALMS FOR FEASTS AND SEASONS FROM THE COMPOSER:
"The psalms are at once both poetry and prayer, or better, they are sung poetry and sung prayer. They have only half-lives if they are simply recited or read. They are common to the Jewish and the Christian faiths where they are one of the chief methods of prayer, both public and private. The wide range of human expression is echoed within their direct and memorable poetry: praise and lament, exultation and contrition, warlike chant and tender song. The ways in which the psalms have been sung are just as varied. The pattern heard in this collection is described as responsorial. This popular way of singing the psalms is similar to the refrain and verse format of many other songs. Here the refrain section is usually a short text taken from the psalm. It is first sung by a soloist (cantor), repeated by the congregation, and then repeated by them after each stanza of psalm verses sung by the cantor.
"This collection falls into two parts: the first contains psalms traditionally associated with the major celebrations of the Christian liturgical year such as Christmas and Easter (Feasts), while the second contains of a general nature for the rest of the year (Seasons). Their selection was made principally for their suitability as responses after a reading from the Scriptures. Hence, a psalm of penitence would follow a reading on the theme of penitence. Their uses, of course, would extend far beyond this to many other occasions: formally liturgical ones and others less formally structured.
"They may be performed simply or with more elaboration. Obviously too much decoration will blunt the direct appeal of the words. In addition to the organ, the present recording uses sometimes a flute and at others a guitar to provide instrumental variety in the accompaniment. Many worshipping communities have an instrumentalist or two as well as their keyboard player. Judicious experimentation with such instruments will produce many other results that are not attempted here.
"Whether these psalm settings are used to stimulate a Church community to approach the singing of psalms afresh, or more simply as a means for an individual to enter their world of relating to God, the psalm texts themselves will continue to speak to the heart, whether in pain or in gladness."
Christopher Willcock, 2017
Christopher Willcock (born 1947) is an Australian Jesuit priest and one of the most prolific and frequently published Catholic composers of liturgical music.
- Psalm 25 To you, O Lord Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 85 Lord, let us see you kindness Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 98 All the ends of the earth Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 75 Lord, every nation Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 51 Be merciful, O Lord Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 91 Be with me, Lord Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 130 With the Lord there is mercy Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 22 My God, my God Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 136 His love is everlasting Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 118 This is the day Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 66 Let all the earth Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 47 God mounts his throne Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 104 Lord, send out your Spirit Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 19 Lord, you have the words Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 27 The Lord is my light Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 34 Taste and see Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 63 My soul is thirsting Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 95 If today you hear his voice Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 100 We are his people Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 103 The Lord is kind and merciful Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 145 I will praise your name Christopher Willcock
- Psalm 122 Let us go rejoicing Christopher Willcock
- Graham Cox · organ
- Robyn Hezky · flute
- Phil Gardner · guitar
- Therese Quinn · soprano · tracks 10 and 15
- Joan Marshall · alto · tracks 2 and 21
- Geoff Lock · tenor · tracks 4, 6, 11, 14, 16 and 19
- Michael Wood · baritone · tracks 3, 17, 20 and 22
- David Rankin · baritone · tracks 1, 5, 8, 14 and 22
Where to buy
Move CDs can be ordered through music retailers across Australia including Readings.
- List price
- $20.00 AUD
- Release date
- © 1977 Move Records
- ℗ 1977 Move Records
- Catalogue number
- MD 3018
- EAN 9314574301823