Hymn Project Reaches 1000 Hymns.

What started about a year ago as a gift to my father, a retired Presbyterian pastor, who missed singing all of old hymns has now grown into a collection of over 1000 recordings. Many of these hymns are understandably in the dust bin of history. And I have found there have been many composers who seem to think that 3/4 and 6/8 are the only meters in the universe (a trend we still see today).

More importantly, I have found how our hymns reflect our cultures more than we may ever imagine. I have had conversations with people comparing texts and tunes where the texts were nearly identical in content but had such different cultural roots (one Baptist and the other Episcopalian) that despite their textual similarities, they would never be used by the other church.
This has given me a bit more tolerance for the CCM world of music and with it a better understanding how this musical genre reflects the strengths and weaknesses of contemporary culture. I don’t have an appreciation of CCM, just an understanding.

I have been struck by the enormous richness of our musical heritage. It is possible to find a hymn which either directly quotes, references, or swerves nearby to just about any scripture used in a service. (Hard to say that about CCM). The more I have explored our vast treasure, the more I have come to appreciate it in all of its glory and warts.

This is the 1000th hymn. A great example of late 19th century middle-American Baptist hymn. It may not appeal to you, but it is one of our’s nonetheless.

Sweet By and By


  1. bremill@aol.com said:

    Congratulations!!!!!! We are proud of you. What now? Will 1001 be next? Mom

    • Already done! Actually I did the 1001 today. More to keep coming. I figure there are probably as many as 10,000 public domain hymns out there at least.

  2. jltb said:

    Do you sell recordings of the hymns?

    • I would be happy to prepare a CD for you or your church. The cost is $1 per hymn & $2 per CD, each CD will hold between 30 and 50 hymns depending on number of verses and length. I will only record public domain hymns which usually means they have to be written before 1940. I usually use the final line of music as an introduction and then play through the hymn 3 times. If you want additional stanzas recorded it is $.25 (25 cents) per additional stanza. You would need to provide a list of hymns and preferred tunes. There are often several tunes associated with each text which can vary between traditions, so you need to provide as much information as possible to make sure I give you the correct tune. Contact me privately at Andrew@ANRPiano.com if you wish to discuss this further.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: