Psalm 37

37A: Commit Your Way to God the Lord

Performance Notes:

Tune Information:

Edward Miller (b. Norwich, England, 1735; d. Doncaster, Yorkshire, England, 1807) adapted ROCKINGHAM from an earlier tune, TUNEBRIDGE, which had been published in Aaron Williams's A Second Supplement to Psalmody in Miniature (c. 1780). ROCKINGHAM has long associations in Great Britain and North America with Isaac Watts' "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross" (384). The tune title refers to a friend and patron of Edward Miller, the Marquis of Rockingham, who served twice as Great Britain's prime minister.

Miller's father had made his living laying brick roads, and the young Edward became an apprentice in the same trade. Unhappy with that profession, however, he ran away to the town of Lynn and studied music with Charles Burney, the most prominent music historian of his day. A competent flute and organ player, he was organist at the parish church in Doncaster from 1756 to 1807. Miller was active in the musical life of the Doncaster region and composed keyboard sonatas and church music. His most influential publications were The Psalms of David for the Use of Parish Churches (1790), in which he sought to reform metrical psalmody (and which included ROCKINGHAM), and David's Harp(1805), an important Methodist tunebook issued by Miller with his son.

ROCKINGHAM (or ROCKINGHAM OLD) is one of the finest long-meter tunes in the history of church music and is much loved by those who sing in harmony. A slight hold (stretching rather than adding a beat) is appropriate at the end of the second phrase and helps to provide a sense of two long musical lines.

Other Resources:

  • Visit hymnary.org for more information on this song and additional resources.
  • The following are alternative accompaniments for this tune, ROCKINGHAM (OLD)

Alternative Harmonization for Organ and Descant Resources:

  • Archer, Malcolm. After the Last Verse. Kevin Mayhew ISBN 0 86209 502 6 [1995]
  • Fedak, Alfred V. 25 More Harmonizations. Selah 160-729 [1998]
  • Mawby, Colin.  Hymns for Occasions. Kevin Mayhew ISBN 0-86209-568-9 [1994]
  • McKinney, Howard D. Preludes for Fifty-Five Well-Known Hymn Tunes. J. Fischer 9770 [1967]
  • Noble, T. Tertius. Free Organ Accompaniments to One Hundred Well-Known Hymn Tunes. J. Fischer 8175 [1946]
  • Rawsthorne, Noel. 200 Last Verses. Kevin Mayhew ISBN 0 86209 189 6 [1991]
  • Shaw, Geoffrey. The Descant Hymn-Tune Book bk 1. Novello 15207
  • Thiman, Eric. Varied Accompaniments to Thirty-Four Well-Known Hymn Tunes. Oxford ISBN 0 19 323210 3 [1937]
  • Wilkinson, John T. One Hundred and Four Descants for “The Hymn Book”. enThusia [1980]
  • Wyton, Alec. New Shoots from Old Roots. SMP KK 279 [1983]

Alternative Harmonization for Piano:

  • Jefferson, Thomas W. Let It Rip! At the Piano. vol. 2 Augsburg ISBN 0-8006-7580-0 [2003]
  • Porter, Rachel Trelstad. Let It Rip! At the Piano. Augsburg 11-11045 [2000]

Copyright Information:

  • Words: Michael Perry © 1989 The Jubilate Group, admin. Hope Publishing Company
  • Music (ROCKINGHAM 8.8.8.8): Second Supplement to Psalmody in Miniature, ca. 1780; adapt. Edward Miller (1731-1807), 1790, P.D.
  • Reprint Information:
    • Words: permitted with a license from OneLicense.net or a CCLI License.
    • Music: The Music is in Public Domain; you do not need permission to reprint it.

37B: A Responsorial Setting

Performance Notes:

Other Resources:

  • Purchase this song in a collection or a CD recording from GIA Publications, Inc. (Please note: GIA Publications, Inc. has this song published in many collections and on many CDs. The selections pointed to here are only one example.)
  • Visit hymnary.org for more information on this song and additional resources.

Copyright Information:

  • Words and Music: The Community of Taizé and Jacques Berthier (1923-1994) © 1991 Ateliers et Presses de Taizé, Taizé Community, France, GIA Publications, Inc., exclusive North American agent
  • Psalm Text: from Evangelical Lutheran Worship © 2006 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, admin. Augsburg Fortress Publishers
  • Tone: © 2011 Faith Alive Christian Resources
  • Reprint Information:
    • Words and Music: permitted with a license from OneLicense.net.
    • When reprinting the Psalm Text and Tone, please use the correct copyright line. Faith Alive Christian Resources gives you permission to reprint the Tone for use in a worship setting.