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Trio on "St. Peter" (Twelve Hymn Tune Voluntaries, No. 8)

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (03/30/20)
Composer: Dicks, Ernest A.
Sample Producer: Lavender Audio
Sample Set: Hereford Cathedral Willis Organ
Software: Hauptwerk IV
Genre: Early 20th century
Ernest Alfred Dicks (1865-1948) was an organist in Cheltenham, and also to the Royal Masonic Lodge. He published several collections, including these fine set of "Hymn Tune Voluntaries - Twelve Pieces for Organ in Various Styles founded on Favourite Psalm and Hymn Tunes," published by Bayley & Ferguson in 1923.

The style is indeed varied, and some of the pieces, actually, most of the pieces, are filled with charm and color. They are unpretentious, and quite "old fashioned," especially when you consider what was happening in the musical world of 1923!

All of them are brief, and while none of them are really hard, I can't say that many of them are actually easy. I suppose it depends on the degree of "detailing" that you want to do.

I'm doing the entire set of 12, but skipping over the Christmas ones for now, and holding off on the Easter ones, which I'll do at the appropriate time. I've also omitted the "Thanksgiving" one for the time being.

"Trio on 'St. Peter'" is the 8th in the collection. It is dedicated: "To C. Charles, Esq.", and takes the melody composed by Alexander Reinagle (1799-1877) in 1836 as its theme. The selected text is: "How sweet the Name of Jesus sounds (in a believer's ear."

The trio texture is exquisite, and has a choir interplay between soft flutes and reeds. The melody appears in long, "unadorned" notes in the right hand, which sort of "appear" in the midst of the "interlude-like" material. I found the final cadences to be particularly expressive and effective, and the entire mood is one of serenity and the calm, assured faith of the living sweetness of the Name of Jesus in the faithful believer's heart.

The scores are courtesy, once again, of Dr. John Henderson, Librarian for the Royal School of Church Music. They are attached below in 2 pdf's, as the "complete" set omits two pages from the first piece in the collection.


Peace and safety to All!
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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