Tunes for worship services

Tunes for worship services

Hello! I am looking for a list of tunes or a song book that contains Irish tunes suitable for worship. It would be excellent if some of them came with words for singing.

Re: Tunes for worship services

That’s a big topic and it depends on the denomination.

Ireland has been a mostly Roman Catholic country for centuries, and nearly all the "Irish" weddings and funerals and church services I’ve played at over the last 40 years (probably over a thousand) have been Catholic.

The Catholic service is the Mass, and composers will write Mass settings which include all the various musical bits of the Mass. You can do a Mass with no music whatever, or a Mass with loads of music. But the musical bits aren’t random but are part of the Mass.

There’s a Mass setting called The Celtic Mass. For whatever reason the Alleluia from that Mass is far more popular than the rest of it.

But you said "songs" which takes us out of traditional denominational Christian services (which have Hymns, Psalms, etc) and implies modern Christian Praise music perhaps? I can’t help you there, they’re writing new praise songs every day.

Re: Tunes for worship services

You should contact Blayne Chastain at https://www.irishflutestore.com. He’s a total musician— an accomplished player of Irish traditional music on flute and piano, and leads worship services.

Re: Tunes for worship services

Number 1 in your list should be Be Thou My Vision. Irish tune, has words, suitable for all occasions. The melody to Star of the County Down was a hymn tune before it was a love song. It has several sets of religious words. Look in your hymnal’s tune index for Job or kingsfold. Come Thou Fount of Ev’ry Blessing has a tune similar to the harp tune The Young Man’s Dream, found in the Bunting collection. Hope this helps.

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Re: Tunes for worship services

Hi Daniel

There is the Seán Ó Riada Mass, Ceol an Aifrinn, with the principal prayers as hymns and sung as gaeilge.

There is a modern hymnal called ‘In Caelo’, Veritas Publications 1999, ISBN 1 85390 466 X.
It contains many as gaeilge, including this one, Ag Críost an síol, a wonderful setting by Liam Ó Maonlaí

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=-r-PzyM5e98


I hope that this is of some help in your search.

All the best
Brian x

Re: Tunes for worship services

All of the above plus The King of Love My Shepherd Is. Also look for My Soul Cries Out with a Joyful Shout. The tune is Star of the County Down and the words are a paraphrase of the Magnificat. Great stuff.

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Re: Tunes for worship services

St Patrick’s Breastplate?

Re: Tunes for worship services

Lúereach Phádraig. Lúereach is gaelic for ´lorica´ which is the full chestplate and corset you see on a Roman Centurion. Usage is similar the ´Christ is my Shield´.

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Re: Tunes for worship services

Yes the Lorica of St Patrick is a gorgeous melody, and the words are profound.

And as mentioned SLANE (Be Thou My Vision, Bridegroom and Bride) and there’s BUNESSAN (Morning Has Broken, which I think is Scottish Gaelic).

Those things are all in the realm of traditional Hymnody rather than contemporary Praise music.

About contemporary praise music, there’s a great album called Revival in Belfast which has newly-composed Praise music incorporating trad Irish instruments like uilleann pipes and whistles.

There’s a local nondenominational church here that has done a couple services based around the Revival In Belfast music, I did the uilleann pipes for it, that music is very nice.

Here’s one of the songs from Revival in Belfast. So fun to play, there’s some trad Irish in there, when the band is playing loud and everyone is singing out and you’re screaming on the pipes it’s a wonderful thing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-xbVLmTThk

Re: Tunes for worship services

We did play for a service in a local baptist church, where they used well-known Scottish tunes and just put their own hymn words to them: e. Skye Boat Song, Kelvingrove, Ye Banks and Braes of Bonnie Doon.
The Irish tunes mentioned above would easily lend themselves to the same process.

And yes, Bunessan is a place on the Isle of Mull: it is also the tune for the Christmas carol "Child in the Manger"

Re: Tunes for worship services

Hi Daniel
check for "Celtic Worship", that’s a Scotish Worship Band which plays traditional hymns as well as contemporary worship songs.
My all-time-favourite hymn is "Abide with me", though I would not strictly call it worship. A piper played it at my friend’s funeral.

Re: Tunes for worship services

The melody for the Scottish Kelvin Grove reminds me and the church song "The Summons." I wonder if it’s based off that.

Re: Tunes for worship services

The melody of "Kelvingrove" is that of the older and less genteel "The Shearin’s No For You", which I don’t think would have ever been sung in a church.

Re: Tunes for worship services

"In Christ Alone" is a beautiful hymn in 3/4 time that I learned from the former conductor of my church’s orchestra. He learned it in Europe and arranged it for orchestra when he returned to the US.

Whether it’s an old melody with many names that has been used over & over, or a newish melody is beyond my scope of knowledge.

A quick internet search had many hits under "images".

edited to add: Also search for "The Water’s Wide". It’s another folk tune that has been used in hymnals.

Re: Tunes for worship services

Our church has done In Christ Alone too and it’s a great tune, though not traditional. It’s by Keith Getty (from Northern Ireland) and Stuart Townend (from England).

Re: Tunes for worship services

Robin Mark is the best! I have all of his books!
I play fiddle and whistle!