About this blog

This is a window into the weird world of Anglicanism, as experienced on a Cathedral Close. Has anything much happened since Trollope's Barchester Chronicles? You will still see the 'canon in residence' hurrying across to choral Evensong, robes flapping, as the late bell chimes. But look carefully and you will notice he is checking the football score on his iPhone as he runs. This is also a writer's blog. It charts the agony and ecstasy of the novelist's life. And it's a fighter's blog. It charts the agony and ecstasy of the judo mat. Well, the agony, anyway.

Sunday 26 May 2013

CHAPTER 21--The Backing Tracks

A little Pentecost treat for you, over on my other blog: http://catherine-fox-novel.blogspot.co.uk/

And here's this week's backing track.  I'd love to be able to provide a link to something by the Dorian Singers, but as I made them up, this is not possible.  I mention a couple of highbrow pieces in passing.  The cathedral organist was practising Durufle's Choral Varie Veni Creator Spiritus late at night, ready for Pentecost.  Here it is, played here suitably Frenchly:

Meanwhile, Lindchester cathedral choir were busy with that week's setting of the Mass, Missa bell amfitrit altera.  Lovely bit of Lassus for you:

I decided on these two pieces after a spot of internet research: I snooped about in the music lists of a few  medieval Anglican cathedrals.  Liverpool cathedral is sui generis.  What happens here is no real guide for what would be happening in Lindchester.

So those are your solid bits of cathedral repertoire.  And now the fun starts.  I also refer to this (mwa ha ha!):

And it doesn't stop there, because I also mention 'Slane'.  This is the tune that goes to the hymn 'Be thou my vision'; a hymn containing one of the must baffling lines known to the church: 'be all else but naught to me save that thou art.'  It could use a little footnote, like the one which explains the 'mystic rose' reference in another hymn.  The footnote might say, 'Let anything else be as nothing to me, provided you aren't (as nothing to me).'

Here is 'Slane' sung 'properly': http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00hs3xg

And here it is, RUINED, RUINED I TELL YOU: http://vimeo.com/11157836

Those evil evangelicals!  They've only gone and switched the time signature from 3/4 to 4/4.  Be very afraid!  This is the music to which the horsemen of the Apocalypse will come cantering through our cathedrals, trampling vestments underfoot and making us all worship with guitars.  You see the problem?  No, nor do I.  Load of cobblers.  I swing both ways when it comes to Slane.  We had the 4/4 version in Liverpool cathedral at the wedding of the bishop's daughter only the week before last and the building is still standing.

And now, just to calm us all down, this is the Wesley hymn 'O thou who camest from above', the last verse of which Dominic finds himself thinking about at the end of this week's chapter.  It is sung in the traditional cathedral manner, with the organ half a bar ahead of the congregation.  Enjoy: 


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  2. Ah, strangely I couldn't see the whole of this post yesterday, hence me adding a totally superfluous list of links to the music mentioned in Chapter 21 (was a good work evasion tactic for me anyway!). I am very much enjoying this new musical accompaniment to your novel writing!

  3. You 'forgot' this one ;-)