Lester H. Groom (1929–2000) was born in Chicago and received his early keyboard training from both his mother and father. His father later became his major professor in organ and composition at Wheaton College (Illinois), where he received a Bachelor of Music degree in 1951. He earned the Master of Music degree in organ performance from Northwestern University in 1952. Groom held teaching positions at Moody Bible Institute (Chicago), Blue Mountain College (Mississippi), and Baker University (Kansas). He joined the faculty of Seattle Pacific University in 1969, where he taught organ, harpsichord, music theory, and composition. He retired from SPU in 1991 and was named Professor Emeritus the following year. Throughout his career, he held positions as church organist and choir director. He served as organist of First Presbyterian Church, Seattle from 1979 until his retirement in 1996.
His published works include organ and choral compositions, articles, and music reviews. He was a specialist in the art of organ improvisation and was a frequent lecturer at church music workshops and for thirteen summers he served on the faculty of the Evergreen Conference School of Church Music (Colorado).
"Prelude on 'Resignation'" is one of the "best" works in this collection, which is soon to be published by Lorenz.
It sets the famous and well-loved tune from "Southern Harmony" in a most unusual way, both in harmonic usage, tonality and "episodic" material.
I don't want to take credit for "someone else's work," but I think that the registrational scheme and musical approach that I've taken is what really makes this piece. I've managed to get a lot of color and variety - not at the expense of the music, but rather to help serve it better.
If I were to play this "as written," the piece would sound vastly different from what you'll hear.
I think you will like this one!
A photo of Lester Groom is attached below.