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Del Roper -- Carillon Chimes In Digital Audio
What's inside the CD Cover
In High Fidelity
With golden-voiced bells ringing out in a joyous spirit of thanksgiving, Del Roper has recorded here a collection of favorite hymns.
We have first "What A Friend We Have In Jesus", a hymn of abiding faith, played simply and melodiously. The next three, "In The Garden", "Sweet Hour Of Prayer", and "Love Divine", are hymns which sing of spiritual joys. They are known to everyone and are sung in nearly all seasons.
"Be Still My Soul" is the stately melody from Findandia, by John Silbelius, to which several hymns are sung. You may know it by another name. Del Roper uses it as a bridge between the simpler hymns and the majestic Lord's Prayer, which follows it.
The beauty of Malotte's "The Lord's Prayer" depends, above all, on expression. Both a sensitive artist and an instrument of great dynamic range are required to bring out the full beauty of the Lord's Prayer. Del Roper plays it here with feeling. Starting with the melody played almost entirely on single bells and without embellishment, harmonies are unobtrusively added, gradually building up to the grandeur great bells can give this stirring anthem.
Then we have Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, from Bach's Cantata No. 147. This is the first successful recording of Bach on bells, and the Symphonic Carillon has made this recording possible. Harmony is the soul of Bach's music. In an ordinary carillon, a minor third is heard in each bell along with the principal tone. Imagine playing a minor third with each and every note of any of Bach's works! It might still be music, but it would certainly not be Bach.
"Fairest Lord Jesus", also known as the "Crusader's Hymn", is sung to an old Silesian folk song. It is found in both Catholic and Protestant Hymnals.
"How Firm A Foundation" is, of course, the same melody as "Adeste Fideles", a Christmas hymn, and one particularly well suited for playing on bells.
Martin Luther's grand old hymn, "A Mighty Fortress", takes an added power played on bells, and will be found in the repertoire of many carillonneurs. Mr. Roper plays it with the joyous vigor it demands.
"We Gather Together To Ask The Lord's Blessing", also called the "Pilgrims Prayer of Thanksgiving", is a beautiful old Dutch melody. It is not found in all hymnals.
Our Final hymn is the "Doxology", "Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow".
To prevent these false
notes, which are really false harmonies, the bells of the second set in the
Symphonic Carillon are each tuned to include a major third instead of the
conventional minor third. The carillonneur, having at his command both types of
bells, can always select the one which fits the harmony requirements of the
music, resulting in, what is best described as a symphony of bells.