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50 Christmas Carols for All Harps: Each…
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50 Christmas Carols for All Harps: Each Arranged for Beginning and…

by Sylvia Woods

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Sylvia Woods is a master at crafting versatile arrangements for harpists of all skill levels to enjoy. In this book (which really only contains 49 carols, as there are two different melodies for "Away in a Manger," but no matter), there are two versions of each piece, one simpler and one more difficult. Each has chord markings so that the melody can be used with whatever left-hand arrangement the player likes, and the two can be played together in a duet or ensemble. The arrangements are considerate of both pedal and lever harpists, so everyone can find something they can play in this book. It was a great part of my sight-reading practice as a child, and since lyrics are provided for every tune (though not always on the same page), I often enjoyed pulling it out just to sing from as well. I imagine that these arrangements would be just as easily playable on a piano.

The choice of carols tends to the traditional, western European, and predominantly religious. Even in the late 1980s and 1990s, there were many pieces here that I was not familiar with, and looking back after twenty-five years of inundation by 24-hour Christmas pop radio every December, these selections seem even more quaint. But that is all the more reason that it is a pleasure to have them gathered into such a volume. A knowledge of French, German, and Latin helps me to appreciate these pieces all the more, as the lyrics are generally provided in the original language of the song. This book has passed from a piece of childhood nostalgia that I always fondly enjoyed playing from to a celebration of traditions long since forgotten, but worth cherishing.

The carols included are:
The Angels and the Shepherds
Angels We Have Heard on High
Away in a Manger
Blessed Be that Maid Marie
The Boar's Head Carol
Bring a Torch, Jeannette, Isabella
The Cherry Tree Carol
Christ Was Born on Christmas Day
The Coventry Carol
Deck the Halls
Ding Dong Merrily on High
The First Nowell
Entre Le Boeuf
The Gloucestershire Wassail
Go, Tell It on the Mountains
God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
Good Christian Men, Rejoice
Good King Wenceslas
Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
Here We Come a' Wassailing
The Holly and the Ivy
I Saw Three Ships
Il est Né
Ihr Kinderlein, Kommet
Infant Holy
It Came upon the Midnight Clear
Jingle Bells
Joy to the World
Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence
Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming
Masters in this Hall
Noël Nouvelet
O Come All Ye Faithful
O Come, O Come Emmanuel
O Holy Night
O Sanctissima
O Tannenbaum
Shepherds Hurried to Bethlehem
Silent Night
The Snow Lay on the Ground
The Twelve Days of Christmas
Up on the Housetop
We Three Kings of Orient Are
We Wish You a Merry Christmas
What Child is This?
Whence is that Goodly Fragrance?
While By My Sheep
While Shepherds Watched their Flocks
Willie, Take Your Little Drum ( )
  quaintlittlehead | May 11, 2014 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 096029905X, Spiral-bound)

For beginning and advanced harpists. Each is arranged in an easy version and a more difficult version. Each carol also contains lyrics and chord indications for harpists or other instrumentalists. The two arrangements can also be played as a duet.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:40 -0400)

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