So this month we had a great hymn, chosen by a great woman – my wife. This has always been one of my favorite hymns since singing it with a group of the best missionaries in the world in Santana, Amapá – Brasil. (I mean how could you not experience great music in a place called Santana?) Interestingly enough, there is not (or at least not at the time) a portuguese version of this hymn. So we sang it in English. Since no one ever sings all the verses, we did. My absolute favorite part of the hymn is the last few verses where it just repeats “There is no end to …” and names off a bunch of things without end. Powerful.
On with the arrangement…
How can you arrange a song about deep space without some type of travel sequence? So the intro is the “Hie” part, slight speeding up but then slowing down as you arrive at Kolob. That’s when I wanted to strip it down and just make it simple, humble, majestic and reverent. It’s kind of an awestruck moment, as if to say, “Whoa, there it is.”
The second verse “continues onward with that same speed to fly.” It’s gathering momentum for the final verse which is in my mind, the creation verse. I tried to make the guitar as big as possible and mimic a orchestral march as you witness “where God’s began to be” in all of its glory and are taking in the “there is no end to …” sections of the hymn. It continues to build until it gets to the little change in each verse in which it then slows down and cranks up the volume as loud as it will go.
The outro is then pulling back from it all and coming back out of that vision. If the intro was the “hie-ing” the outro would be the “bye-ing.”
And that’s it. Always been a favorite of mine, but it was definitely a challenge. It’s a hymn that needs to be as small and quite as possible in some parts and then big and loud in others. But that’s what makes it fun to play! But video taping it was a challenge. Sorry I didn’t play it as cleanly as I should have (and for making all those crazy faces. Who knew I looked like that and never told me?). But I’ll do a better job when I finally record these the right way.
Continue reading to watch the lesson video, download the sheet music, or to leave a comment. Thanks for all the comments so far both on the blog and on the Facebook page. I’ve gotten a lot of great insight from everyone that has definitely helped shape where this site is going each month. Thank you again!