Saving Thanksgiving #2

O Lord that lends me life, Lend me a heart replete with thankfulness!
                                                                                      William Shakespeare

gl_chor.jpgToday’s post will focus on Christian choral music and hymns for Thanksgiving.  It’s the tradition I know best and how I will be celebrating.  Most of the list is traditional music; since I feel so strongly about history and ritual.  I remember singing these hymns when I was very small.  I was dressed as a Pilgrim for one of my first vocal solos.  Loved the starched white bonnet.  I’ve included a few more contemporary pieces that I think will become tradional due to their beauty.   I would love for other people to add comments which include Thanksgiving music from their own faith path.  A later post will deal with secular Thanksgiving music.  I’ve included a few links to performance videos or midi files so you can sing-a-long, explore, or just enjoy.  Today’s artwork is “Angel Choir” by Gustav Klimt.  It’s a lovely representation of giving thanks through praise.  I love the expressions of the angels (and yes, they all seem to be women.)  We usually think of choirs of angels only at Christmas.  How sad.  Remember the hymn phrase “Take my moments and my days; let them flow in ceaseless praise?”  I imagine that’s what angel choirs are all about.

Thanksgiving Choral Anthems

“For the Beauty of the Earth”
Composed by John Rutter

“Simple Gifts”
Arranged by Aaron Copland

“The Promise of Living”
Composed by Aaron Copland

“Sing to the Lord of Harvest”
Composed by Healey Willan

“Time for Turning”
Composed by Craig Courtney

“O Praise the Lord of Heaven”
Composed by William Billings

“Pilgrims’ Chorus”
Composed by Richard Wagner

“Chandos Anthem No.4. ‘O sing unto the Lord a new song'”
Composed by George F. Handel

“Praise to the Lord, the Almighty”
Composed by Hugo Distler

 Thanksgiving Hymns
My favorite Thanksgiving hymns are “We Gather Together,” “Now Thank We All our God,” and “Come, Ye Thankful People, Come.” For these and other traditional hymns, check out the Cyberhymnal’s Thanksgiving Page.  Although not usually considered Thanksgiving hymns, I would add these to the list.  You can find them on Cyberhymnal as well. 

“Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise”
“Praise My Soul,the King of Heaven”
“Dear Lord and Father of Mankind”
“My Shepherd Will Supply My Need”
“Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing”
“How Can I Keep From Singing?”

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