A Christmas Carol

from by Brian Blume

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A simple setting to such meaningful words makes for a beautiful carol, written by Ives in 1894. The song is in the pastoral key of F, originally in 6/8 time (though I use 3/4 in my arrangement). It has the gentle rocking rhythm of a lullaby and an intimate, crooning melody. Considerate of home singers who he might have hoped would sing it, Ives keeps his melody simple with a span of less than an octave, and the melodic motion is predominantly stepwise.

I chose to preserve the simplicity of Ives’ song in this arrangement, which serves well as an interlude or prelude within a Christmas service or concert.

lyrics

Little star of Bethlehem!
Do we see Thee now?
Do we see Thee shining
O'er the tall trees?

Little Child of Bethlehem!
Do we hear thee in our hearts?
Hear the Angels singing:
Peace on earth, good will to men!
Noel!

O'er the cradle of a King,
Hear the Angels sing:
In Excelsis Gloria, Gloria!

From his Father's home on high,
Lo! for us He came to die;
Hear the Angels sing:
Venite adoremus Dominum.

credits

from Let It Snow, released November 19, 2012
Words & music by Charles Ives

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about

Brian Blume Lakeland, Florida

Composer, percussionist, and educator, Brian currently serves as Assistant Professor of Percussion at Southeastern University (Lakeland, FL). As a composer, Brian has works published by Tapspace, drop6, and PercMaster. Brian earned MM and BM degrees in performance from Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music. ... more

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