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Be Still, My Soul/All Saints' Beverly Hills
Be Still My Soul - All Saints Beverly Hills - Dale Adelmann


 
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Program and Notes Reviews
 
Be Still, My Soul
The Choir of All Saints' Church
Beverly Hills
Dale Adelmann, music director
Craig Phillips, organist
World Premiere Recordings!

A stunning program of contemplative sacred texts set to some of the most beautiful singing we've heard. Slow, focused intensity creates a strong emotional response from many listeners, including us. The Martin piece alone is worth the price of admission. With première recordings of new anthems by Craig Phillips and Roland Martin, this CD is also the first recording of the widely admired Choir of All Saints, Beverly Hills, under its new director, Dale Adelmann.

Click on the REVIEWS tab above to see published and e-mailed reviews.

Click here to hear Roland Martin's "The Altar" with a video tribute to Dale Adelmann



Percy Whitlock: Be Still, My Soul
John Ireland: Greater love hath no man
Craig Phillips: We walk by faith
Harold Friedell: Jesus, so lowly
Gabriel Fauré: Cantique de Jean Racine
Larry King: And he shall reign as King
Craig Phillips: The Risen Sun
Edward Bairstow: I sat down under his shadow
Craig Phillips: Transfiguration
Roland Martin: The Altar
Johannes Brahms: Geistliches Lied (Lass dich nur nichts nicht dauren)
Spiritual, arr. Dale Adelmann: Steal away
Samuel Sebastian Wesley: Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace
Calvin Hampton: A Repeating Alleluia
Program Notes


BE STILL, MY SOUL

During his short life, Percy Whitlock composed an impressive body of well-crafted and thoroughly English music, proving himself to be a worthy pupil of Vaughan Williams. This intimate introit, on a text by W.D. Maclagan (Archbishop of York, 1891-1909), is one of three published in 1930. It perfectly encapsulates the prayerful stillness and adoration that may be experienced “in the beauty of holiness” (Psalm 29:2, 96:9; I Chron 16:29) of Anglican choral worship. As title track for this CD, it serves as a kind of quiet invocation in homage to its liturgical purpose.

Be still, my soul, for God is near; the Great High Priest is with thee now;
the Lord of Life Himself is here, before whose face the angels bow
To make thy heart His lowly throne thy Saviour God in love draws nigh
He gives Himself unto His own, for whom He once came down to die
I come, O Lord. I come, O Lord, for thou dost call
to blend my pleading prayer with Thine:
to Thee I give myself, my all, and feed on Thee, and make Thee mine. Amen.

words: W. D. Maclagan (1826–1910)
music: Percy Whitlock (1903–1946)


GREATER LOVE HATH NO MAN
Sarah Parga, soprano
Jay Tuttle, baritone

Ireland stands as a reticent voice in a distinguished lineage of composers for Anglican choral worship between his teacher at the Royal College of Music, Charles Villiers Stanford, and Ireland’s subsequent pupil there, Benjamin Britten. Although Ireland wrote very little sacred music, this magnificent anthem is a firmly established jewel in the Anglican repertory. Its masterful combination of four biblical texts juxtaposes Christ’s offering of himself on the cross with the very personal sacrifices that ordinary men and women make of themselves, whether for the well being of one another or in offering their lives to God.

Many waters cannot quench Love, neither can the floods drown it. Love is strong as death. Many waters cannot quench Love. Greater Love hath no man than this: that a man lay down his life for his friends. Who His own self bare our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness. Ye are wash’d, ye are sanctified, ye are justified, in the Name of the Lord Jesus; ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. I beseech you, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies, a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

words: John 15:13, I Peter 2:9, I Corinthians 6:11; Romans 12:1
music: John Ireland (1879–1962)


WE WALK BY FAITH

The three pieces by Craig Phillips featured on this recording represent a large portion of his choral work from 2004. We walk by faith is based on a nineteenth-century hymn text by Henry Alford, an English churchman, theologian, scholar, poet, hymnist, and writer. All Saints’ parishioner David Logan, who commissioned the piece to honor the memory of his parents, chose this text, which reflects a powerful sense of faith in the resurrection in the face of doubt. The text, most appropriate for Easter, is both introspective and uplifting, and the music seeks to reflect its many subtleties.

We walk by faith, and not by sight;
no gracious words we hear
from him who spoke as none e’er spoke;
but we believe him near.

We may not touch his hands and side,
nor follow where he trod;
but in his promise we rejoice,
and cry, “My Lord and God!”

Help then, O Lord, our unbelief;
and may our faith abound,
to call on you when you are near,
and seek where you are found:

that, when our life of faith is done,
in realms of clearer light
we may behold you as you are,
with full and endless sight.

words: Henry Alford (1810–1871)
music: Craig Phillips (b. 1961), composed 2004


JESUS SO LOWLY

The simple, meditative quality of Jesus, so lowly has earned it a beloved place in the American Episcopal choral repertory, and makes it one of only a few anthems by American composer Harold Friedell that is still widely sung. Friedell was distinguished in his own day as a faculty member of the Juilliard School and composition teacher at the Union Theological Seminary School of Sacred Music, in addition to holding prestigious positions as organist-choirmaster of Calvary and ultimately St. Bartholomew’s Church in New York. This strophic text set here is now the only widely known poem by Edith Williams, who was the sister of poet, novelist, theologian, and scholar Charles Williams.

Jesus, so lowly, Child of the earth:
Christen me wholly, bring me new birth

Jesus, so lonely, weary and sad;
Teach me that only Love maketh glad

Jesus, so broken, silent and pale;
be this the token Love will not fail

Jesus, victorious, mighty and free;
Teach me how glorious death is to be.

words: Edith Williams (1889–?)
music: Harold Friedell (1905–1958)


CANTIQUE DE JEAN RACINE

Gabriel Fauré is now widely recognized as one of the great French composers of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Fauré had a particular gift for small and intimate forms of musical expression (in contrast to the often grandiose forms of the Austro-German tradition), and his harmonic language was both subtle and highly personal. Because of this, the sheer depth of his talent was not fully appreciated during his lifetime. Fauré wrote Cantique de Jean Racine, his first significant work, in 1865, while he was in his final year at the École Niedermeyer. Fauré submitted—and won—the piece for the composition prize, though it was only published eleven years later, with a full orchestral version following in 1906. It is set to a text by the seventeenth-century dramatist and poet Jean Racine

Verbe égal au Très-Haut Notre unique espérance,
Jour éternel de la terre et des cieux,
nous rompons le silence,
Divin Sauveur jette sur nous les yeux!

Répands sur nous le feu de ta grâce puissante,
que tout l’enfer fuie au son de ta voix.
Dissipe le sommeil d’une âme languissante,
qui la conduit à l’oubli de tes lois!

Ô Christ sois favorable â ce peuple fidèle
pour te bénir maintenant rassemblé,
Reçois les chants qu’il offre à ta gloire immortelle
et de tes dons qu’il retourne comblé!

English translation:

O Word most high, our only hope,
eternal Light of heaven and earth,
we break the silence of the peaceful night.
Divine Redeemer, cast thine eyes upon us.
Pour out upon us the fire of thy almighty grace,
that all the powers of hell may flee& at the sound of thy voice.

Dispel the slumber of the languishing soul,
that leads it to forget thy laws.
O Christ, bestow thy favor upon this faithful people
assembled now to bless thee.

Accept the hymns which we offer& to thy everlasting glory,
And these thy gifts which we return unto thee.

words: Jean Racine (1639–1699), translated by Vera Kozak
music: Gabriel Fauré (1845–1924)


AND HE SHALL REIGN AS KING

Brian Driscoll, second organist

As music director at Trinity Church, Wall Street, from 1968-1989, Larry King earned a reputation as one of the greatest creative and innovative figures in American church music. And he shall reign as King (composed in 1979 for his mother, Dorothy) combines texts from four biblical books to affirm the eternal reign of God, who is Alpha and Omega. King achieves a numinous sense of eternity by beginning and ending the work with aleatoric writing in which the singers are invited to sing their musical lines at will in canons spaced at any multiple of the quarter-note pulse. The effect is a musical timelessness that conveys both serenity and quiet awe.

I am Alpha and Omega, the first and last, who is, and who was, and who is to come

I will raise up a righteous branch and he shall reign as king. For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world to bear witness to the truth. In him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven. King of kings; Lord of lords!

words: Revelation 1:8, Jeremiah 23:5, John 18:37, Colossians 1:19-20
music: Larry King (1932–1990)


THE RISEN SUN

The Risen Sun is based on a poem of Helen Schucman from her 1982 collection, The Gifts of God. Schucman lived and worked in New York City, teaching psychology at Columbia University. She penned a 1200-page self-study course in spiritual development, A Course in Miracles, during which time she also wrote a number of poems. The Foundation for a Course in Miracles graciously granted permission for this text to be set to music, and subsequently published and recorded. Deborah and Chris Winchell commissioned this work by Craig Phillips for the choirs of All Saints’, Beverly Hills, in honor of their thirtieth wedding anniversary. The opening line “Be still, my soul, and rest upon the Lord” recalls the theme of this recording.

Be still, my soul, and rest upon the Lord
In quiet certainty. For He has come
To rescue you from doubt. And now you stand
In blazing glory of a risen sun
That cannot set. It will forever be
Exactly as it is. You stand with Him
Within a radiance prepared for you
Before time was and far beyond its reach.

Be still and know. And knowing, be you sure
Your Lord has come to you. There is no doubt
That stands before His countenance, nor can
Conceal from you what He would have you see.

The sun has risen. He has come at last.
Where stands His presence there can be no past.
Be still, my soul, and rest upon the Lord
Who comes to keep the promise of His Word.

words: Helen Schucmann (1909–1981)
music: Craig Phillips (b. 1961), composed 2004


I SAT DOWN UNDER HIS SHADOW

"I sat down" is one of the great miniatures from any time period in Anglican music history. Based on two verses from the Song of Solomon, Bairstow crafts a gentle introit that bids the listener enter into and rest in the very presence of the Beloved, God’s own self. Composed during Bairstow’s long and prolific tenure as organist of York Minster (1913–1946), the work creates a sense of calm and quiet joy that have made this a favorite in the Anglican repertory.

I sat down under His shadow with great delight,
and His fruit was sweet to my taste.
He brought me to the banqueting house,
and His banner over me was love.

words: Song of Solomon 2:3b–4
music: Edward Bairstow (1874–1946)


TRANSFIGURATION

The Association of Anglican Musicians commissioned Transfiguration for its 2004 conference in Cincinnati, where it was given its première. The work is based largely on a text by the thirteenth-century German mystic, Mechtild of Magdeburg, best known for her journal The Flowing Light of the Godhead. The text used for this recording is one of Mechtild’s most evocative and eloquent expressions of praise. Other passages are drawn from the gospels of Mark and Luke and culminate in the words “This is my Son, my beloved, my chosen One,” a direct reference to the transfiguration of Christ.

O burning mountain,
O chosen sun,
O perfect moon,
O fathomless well,
O unattainable height,
O unattainable light,
O clearness beyond all measure,
O wisdom without end,
O mercy without all limit,
O strength beyond resistance,
O crown of all majesty,
All creation humbly sings your praise:
Bright stars, high mountains, depths of the seas, rushing waters,
All these break into song at heaven’s proclamation:
This is my Son, my beloved, My chosen One. Alleluia!

words: Mechtild of Magdeburg (1207–1294), Mark 9:7, Luke 9:35
music: Craig Phillips (b. 1961), composed 2004


THE ALTAR
Pip Clarke, violin

Commissioned by the people of St. Paul’s Cathedral, Buffalo, to honor Dale Adelmann’s tenth anniversary as organist-choirmaster there, much of this tightly composed, poignant setting of George Herbert’s fervant text of self-offering and praise was composed in one day, set aside in advance for that purpose by the composer. As it happened, that day was September 11, 2001. The Altar was premièred during a concert for All Saints’ and All Souls on November 2, 2001, accompanied by the same orchestral forces employed in Morten Lauridsen’s Lux Aeterna. This organ-choral performance employs the extended coda’s violin solo with the composer’s blessing.

A broken Altar, Lord, thy servant rears,
Made of a heart, and cemented with tears:
Whose parts are as thy hand did frame;
No workman’s tool hath touch’d the same.
A Heart alone
Is such a stone,
As nothing but
Thy pow’r doth cut.
Wherefore each part
Of my hard heart
Meets in this frame,
To praise thy name.
That if I chance to hold my peace,
These stones to praise thee may not cease.
O let thy blessed Sacrifice be mine,
And sanctify this Altar to be thine.

words: George Herbert (1593–1633), published in the year of his death
music: Roland E. Martin (b. 1955), composed 2001


GEISTLICHES LIED

Johannes Brahms wrote his Opus 30, Geistliches Lied (Lass dich nur nichts nicht dauren), in 1856, and it was first published in 1864. Though Brahms wrote a great deal of choral music, he is most often remembered, in that genre, for Ein Deutsches Requiem and the Liebeslieder Walzer. Geistliches Lied demonstrates his tremendous skill in combining his love and reverence for counterpoint with his gift for melodic invention. The work is constructed as a double canon at the ninth below, with tenor imitating soprano at that interval and bass imitating alto, a reflection of Brahms own assiduous study of earlier masters. Most listeners, however, will probably not be aware of or concerned with such technical matters, and may simply revel in the sheer beauty of this music.

Let nothing ever hold you in sorrow.
Be still, as God desires, and find sufficiency in doing God’s will.

Why do you worry today about tomorrow?
The One who cares for all, he will also give you what is yours.

In all of your doings, simply do not waver.
Stand firm: what God decrees, and is known as, what is best. Amen!

Paul Flemming (1609–1640), translated by Dale Adelmann
music: Johannes Brahms (1833–1897)


STEAL AWAY
Michael Lichtenauer, tenor

Originally set for The Gentlemen of St. John’s College, Cambridge, this reworking for the Men, Boys and Girls’ choirs of St. Paul’s Cathedral, Buffalo, clothes the traditional African-American Spiritual in gentle, close harmonies intended to allow Anglican choirs to convey the fervent longing of its message in a way that honors both of these rich choral traditions.

Steal away, steal away, steal away to Jesus!
Steal away, steal away home, I ain’t got long to stay here.
My Lord calls me; he calls me by thunder;
The trumpet sounds within my soul,
I ain’t got long to stay here.
Green trees are bending;
Poor sinner stands atrembling;
The trumpet sounds within my soul,
I ain’t got long to stay here.

words: Spiritual
music: Spiritual, arr. Dale Adelmann


THOU WILT KEEP HIM IN PERFECT PEACE

The serenity of this anthem has made it an enduring favorite in the English cathedral and parish church repertory. In his selection of texts and the sensitivity with which he sets them, Samuel Sebastian Wesley demonstrates a felicity of expression worthy of the bloodline of his grandfather, the great wordsmith and hymn writer Charles Wesley.

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace,
whose mind is stayed on thee.
The darkness is no darkness with thee,
but the night is as clear as the day.
The darkness and the light to thee
are both alike. God is light,
and in Him is no darkness at all.
O let my soul live, and it shall praise thee.
For thine is the kingdom, the power,
and the glory, for evermore.

words: Isaiah 26:3, Psalm 139:12, I John 1:5, Psalm 119:175, Matthew 6:13b
music: Samuel Sebastian Wesley (1810–1876)


A REPEATING ALLELUIA

Calvin Hampton was a renowned organist and composer of music for the organ and for the church. He was associated for many years with Calvary Church in New York City, and in the 1970’s and 80’s, together with fellow New York organists such as Larry King, David Hurd, McNeil Robinson, and Gerre Hancock, significantly influenced the direction of music in the American (and especially Episcopal) Church. He was widely known for his hymn tunes, which appear in the hymnals of many denominations, as well as service music, chamber music and larger works, including three concertos. His untimely death of AIDS in 1984 was a great loss to the music community. The charming A Repeating Alleluia was written for the congregation and choir of Calvary Church, and is representative of the way in which Hampton could bring invention and freshness even to the simplest of forms.

Alleluia.

music: Calvin Hampton (1938–1984)


Average Customer Review: 4.5 of 5 Total Reviews: 5 Write a review.

  0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
 
Transfixed! April 14, 2018
Reviewer: james bach from eastsound, WA United States  
I love this album; and I was positively transfixed by The Altar and the soulful climax before the wandering violin kicks in.

I understand that some people want to hear rock and roll on their commute... this is music for the tender-hearted.

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  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
 
To Anonymous person from Plymouth overdue rebuke September 27, 2017
Reviewer: Br. Daniel Mata from Scottsdale, AZ United States  
"You should have driven by your local Convenient Mart instead"
    In response to the Anonymous person from Plymouth who did not take the time to take a very intensely in depth serious listen to one of the most obviously phenomenal, stunning Choral works ever recorded "Be Still My Sole" {All Saints Church Beverly Hills} is almost criminal! I say this without reservation that this recording is "the finest choral works that I have heard in recent history" please have the decency and respect for the immense God given talent of "ALL THOSE" involved not only in the production, but equally in the reproduction of such sacred holy music! One may never know if per chance, a lowly sole may find this sacred music and in so doing find God, Amen.
Also, I believe it is not coincidence that Electro Static Speaker - Dedicated Low Frequency 16Hz and Multi Channel 24-bit DSD/DXD technology are now available to accurately reproduce the extended dynamic range of such Glorious Holy Sacred Choral Music.

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  0 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
 
Be Still My Soul March 22, 2010
Reviewer: Anonymous Person from Plymouth, NE United States  
I am going to disagree with previous reviewers.  I played "Be Still My Soul" today for the first time and was disappointed.  I found myself fast-forwarding to the next selection in hopes of finding something a little less sombre.  I was traveling in my car, and perhaps that was not the best setting for listening to this particular CD.  I kept adjusting the volume just to hear if it was actually playing, and I could not understand the words because of the extremely slow tempo.  I could tell that the quality of the musicianship was excellent, but it was just not the type of recording that I was looking for.  I will listen again in the quiet of my home, and maybe I will have a better appreciation of this compilation.

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  1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
 
Yes, truly sublime. July 10, 2009
Reviewer: Marianne M. from Springfield, VA United States  
Ditto the previous reviewer.  It's a sublime collection and performance.  The first track is instantly gripping.   This is my most-played Gothic purchase, probably one of my Top 10 cd's ever of any music genre, and I've given copies to family and friends.  So there.  Buy it.

And if you see me belting it out while behind the wheel, kindly ignore me.

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  3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
 
BE STILL, MY SOUL/ALL SAINTS BEVERLY HILLS August 4, 2008
Reviewer: Anonymous Person from SHREVEPORT, LA United States  
YOU MUST BUY AT LEAST TWO COPIES!  ONE FOR THE CAR, ONE FOR WORK OR HOME.....ALL THE REVIEWS YOU HAVE READ ARE ABSOLUTELY TRUE........THE SELECTIONS AND THE SUBLIME SOUND REACH A PLACE OF DEEP FAITH WITHIN YOU.......IT IS BOTH EMOTIONAL AND PHYSICAL!.....GLORIOUS!

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