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Highs and Lows

In the last From the Organ Bench, we learned that the organist does not follow punctuation in the hymn text you are singing because the organist’s current hymnal resource does not match what is printed in the worship aid. Also, we learned that a new St. Joseph hymnal source has been created and we are ironing out the kinks. This summer, we begin the process of matching the organist and worship aid hymnal resources so that the text the organist sees matches what the congregation is singing, and the organ can observe the congregation’s punctuation. Now on to other things! It’s not as high as you think!

Most of you can tell from looking at music printed in a worship aid when the notes are going to be high. When a note is on or above that top space on the music staff, that’s pretty high for most folks (men and women) who are not schola members.

The highest note most folks can sing is on the second line from the top of the music staff (see below).

What you don’t know is that in those instances where the notes are too high, the organist either has a printed version that is one step lower, or the hymn is transpose the music down 1⁄2 or one whole step. We have a schola member who is blessed (cursed?) with perfect pitch and it drives him nuts when I do this! So, don’t be shy, belt it out. It’s lower than you think!

Brad Cunningham, Organist


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