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TTBB arrangements of "It Is Well" and "Amazing Grace"

Hello, friends and colleagues! I am still working on getting together rep for a live concert recording of a cappella hymns and motets. Thaks to everyone that contributed to the conversation and esp. to Jameson Marvin who offered to contribute a new TTBB arrangement of "In the Garden" (since one did not heretofore exist exist). I have about got things decided on the motet end: "Exsulate just"; "Jesu, dulcis memoria" (Victoria); "Beati Mortui"; "O Vos Omnes" (Casals); and "Sicut Cervus" (Palestrina/Marvin). It is painful to whittle the hymn list down, but I am almost there. There are a couple of holes however which leads to my question:
Does anyone know of a compelling a cappella TTBB arrangement of the Philip Bliss hymn "It Is Well with My Soul?" I cannot find a published one, even in my old Rodeheaver, etc. TTBB hymnals. This seems like a real oversight, but perhaps that hymn is not a pillar of the hymnody all over the country as it is in the Baptist South. Any leads?
Also, I have not found an a cappella TTBB arrangement of "Amazing Grace" that I like. That has never been my favorite hymn, but it is so important to many people that I would like to include it if a good arrangement can be found.
Can anyone help me?
Replies (8): Threaded | Chronological
on February 12, 2014 10:19pm
Let me restate that I am, ideally, looking for a cappella arrangements. Thanks.
on February 13, 2014 7:20am

David Harrington has a wonderful and stirring a cappella arrangement of “It Is Well" that I love. There are several performances of it available on YouTube, but this one seems to have the clearest capture of all four parts:   The group "Four Voices" first performed this arrangement, but the only YouTube vids of them performing it are camera-phone quality...

Here’s where you can find all of David Harrington’s arrangements for men:

Best wishes!



on February 13, 2014 9:24am
Many thanks, Rob! I listened and I think that will do nicely. I wish it had the "my humble estate" verse, but otherwise it was pretty much what I was looking for.
on February 13, 2014 10:05am
If you're still looking for an Amazing Grace arrangement, I would be happy to write one for you!
That said (re Amazing Grace): the original Sacred Harp version is for 3 voices and would work beautifully as is for TTB; but you would only have the one setting for all verses. (I've done it in this form with mixed choirs varying the voicings for each verse). You can also put baritones on G3 for the entire setting and make it TTBB that way.
If, however, you're looking for an arrangement with a more "cultivated" sound (or to combine this with the above suggestion), see my offer above!
Hope this helps,
Robert A.M. Ross <Robert Ross 11>
on February 13, 2014 11:30am
I have performed the Sacred Harp version with a pro SATB choir and it is quite effective in its way (I am a dyed-in-the-wool shapenote fan) but not what I am looking for for this recording and, as you said, there would not be variety between different verses. I checked out your website, and I would be honored to have you write an arrangement for my group, Voci Virili. I see you have also done many orchestrations. What do you think of this idea: within my group I have highly competent (if not orchestral soloist level) trumpet, trombone, and tuba (or euphonium) players (one of each). This would leave us with 3 TI, 3 T2, 4 B1, and 4 B2 singing. Do you think it is feasible to do an "Amazing Grace" arrangement for TTBB, TTB, or TBB with trumpet/trombone/tuba trio accompaniment (no piano)? Most of the other arrangements for this concert are relatively simple, so I think something expressive and moving but no too flamboyant would be appropriate. If you think that is too awkward a combo (without a second trumpet), a cappella is still good. One other idea is tuba/euphonium quartet accompaniment; I have enough friends that play these instruments to make this feasible. What do you think?
on February 13, 2014 5:56pm
I also just found out one of my baritone singers plays the trumpet as well, so we could actually have a brass quartet (with either tube or a second trombone) for this piece, as long as the parts aren't too extravagant.
on March 6, 2014 5:02pm
If you're still looking, check out Joe Johnson's website.  His sacred public domain arrangements are offered FREE.  
Here's he's "Amazing Grace"   Not too difficult, but the solo to harmony transitions and 3 key changes make it quite interesting.
on January 18, 2015 6:39am
Try the Barberhop Harmony Society for both arrngements.
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