Bruce shared this link to a collection of Advent and Nativity hymns by John Wesley. I loved the first one I saw, so I wrote a tune to go with it and made a quick recording (version 1). After posting it here and getting some feedback, I came up with an alternate tune and made another quick recording (version 2). Now my idea is to turn this into a music-writing exercise, attempting to approach Wesley’s text from a variety of melodic and stylistic angles. Unfortunately, I don’t have that many ideas, so this might be a short exercise. If you’ve got an idea for this text, record it and send it to me and I’ll post it here. I’d be really interested to see what people come up with.
Is it Christmas already?
Ye Simple Men of Heart Sincere
Words by John Wesley, 1810. Music by Cameron Gray, 2009
©2009 Rough Harbor Music
Ye simple men of heart sincere,
Shepherds, who watch your flocks by night,
Start not to feel an Angel near,
Nor tremble at his glorious light.
A herald from the heavenly King,
I come your every fear to chase;
Good tidings of great joy I bring,
Great joy to all the fallen race.
To you is born on this glad day,
A Savior, by our host adored;
Our God in Bethlehem survey,
Make haste to worship Christ the Lord.
By this the Savior of mankind,
Th’ incarnate God shall be displayed,
The Babe, ye wrapped in swathes shall find,
And humbly in a manger laid.