Reply To: How Calmly The Evening

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Vincent. There’s some things I love about this hymn. I think the mood of the music matches the text very well.

I agree with Lynn on both of his points. I might expand a touch on his point of repetition.

I think, while the piece flows fairly intuitively, a bit more coherence between the lines would help make it stronger. I definitely don’t think every piece has to be an ear-worm, but when I think about a lot of the hymns that have stood the test of time and remain in our liturgy today, there’s often some recognizable motif that makes it “stick”. In looking at this hymn measure 1 and two have that little repeated motif (repeated a 2nd higher). I sorta expected that motif to come back at some point but it didn’t. Instead each line more or less brought about a new set of musical ideas. You might consider whether there’s a way to bring a bit more congruence between the lines.

That dotted quarter – eighth figure is a great little rhythmic idea that I think you use well. I think pairing that with some melodic repetition could make this hymn quite strong.

One trick if you don’t already do this, is to save a copy of it and delete everything but the melody line. Listen to that, sing it and think about what works and what doesn’t. In my experience, sometimes the harmony can get in the way of us critically listening to the melody.

Overall, I enjoy the mood of this piece! Keep the music flowing!