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Monday, 20 July 2015

Advice from the Experts

There have been a number of parting of the ways, ("partings of the way"? "partings of the ways"?) between Catholic liturgical musicians and their mortal bosses come of late, some of high profile musicians, others of unsung, (and no doubt underpaid,) toilers in the vineyard.

Pilgrim musicians for a pilgrim Church, huh? always be prepared for change in this line of endeavor, the only certainty is uncertainty, right?
Someone mentioned that part of the reason is that making music, singing, and passing judgement on whether one "likes" a particular piece of music and it is therefore "good" are not seen as requiring any particular skill  - by those who have no skills.
Anyone could manage a sort of religious karaoke, you get accompaniment tracks and just sing along to them, right? It's not like there are rules about music for Mass, huh? isn't it all a matter of taste when you get down to it?

And everyone has a voice, so singing certainly doesn't require any expertise. So forget your degree and experience and work keeping up with relevant liturgical documents and experience with this particular acoustical environment and knowledge of what vocal demands should be made septuagenarians of an early wintry morning, I want it faster/slower/lower/higher/louder/stronger/peppy/not so scary/more majory!
(The last three are real incidents, IM own, personal, actual E.)

Any road, it reminded me of an old thread at the forum.
my husband (who is an organist,) had his pastor come up to him and tell him to "add more sharps" to a song, so it would be more "energetic."
'Nuff said.

(By the way, I am well aware that this predicament is not peculiar to church musicians, virtually everyone in every line of endeavor serves at the pleasure of someone else. Two very good parish priests I know have been more or less cashiered recently for... let us just say, for less than "cause".)

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