Free Scores & Help Needed: Spanish Lenten (and Eucharistic) Hymns
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 2,765
    Greetings all,
    I suddenly find myself in the privileged position of accompanying one of our Hispanic choirs at the 9am mass. Prior to my involvement, it was the classic grab-all of guitars, rain sticks, and devotional music that differs little from what I hear in Mexican restaurants. The usual; exactly what you'd expect within the broader Hispano-American liturgical context. Consequently, a mass solely accompanied by organ with Chant Mass XVIII (in Spanish) and some traditional hymnody (Ubi Caritas and Crux Fidelis (to Picardy) – both translated into Spanish) made for quite the difference and a good cultural shock if ever there was one. Our priest was thrilled, as you can imagine. And while the choir does not (yet) have much skill, their hearts are so delightfully willing and eager. It's truly a lovely thing and endears them to me greatly.

    That said, I now find myself in the position of needing to find some Spanish resources that resemble what we would consider 'traditional hymnody' and needing to find them fast. I am aware of the three Hymnals in Spanish that CCW shared last year, and I have been combing through them looking for things I can adapt. The problem with these resources is that the descent into what I would call 'pseudo-mariachi' music at mass became entrenched a long time ago within the hispanosphere, so many of the hymns in those books have weird rambling melodies, and texts with exceedingly odd meters by anglo standards. It's amazing to see a 100 year old hymnal with this type of music in it. Sadly, it makes it rather difficult to adapt to simpler music. One text I was interested in on Monday was 6.6.6.5.6.6. Good luck finding a "normal" tune for that (and I'd much prefer to avoid the original which I highly doubt they know anyway). My goal here isn't to anglicize the liturgy, so much as to start to draw it back to something that is more normative (in the universal sense) in style. Unfortunately, many of the extant resources adapt very poorly to organ. It just is what it is. I also recognize that I need to make some concessions here, and still maintain some of that music I'd rather avoid, just for the sake of offering music to them that they already know in a style that they are comfortable singing in. It sounds odd with organ, but again, it is what it is. But I'd still like to sniff out some richer fare.

    With all of that preface out of the way, I'd like to share two things, and ask a favor.

    First the share: I've arranged organ accompaniments for Perdona a Tu Pueblo, and ¡Perdon, Oh Dios Mío and shared them free on my blog.
    Perdona a Tu Pueblo: https://psallitedomino.com/blog/free-score-perdonaatupueblo-traditional-spanish-lenten-hymn-sndfz
    Perdon Oh Dios Mio: https://psallitedomino.com/blog/free-score-perdn-oh-dios-mo-traditional-spanish-lenten-hymn

    As I understand it, these are both very traditional and widely known. They are free to all who may also have hispanic populations. Mercifully, they work very well with organ.

    Now the ask: to those who are much further advanced in this sphere than I am, are there other good Lenten (and Eucharistic!) texts that I should know about, and that may adapt well to having organ accompaniment? Having never operated in this sphere before, I don't even know what/where to be looking beyond those 3 hymnals. Considering all I've mentioned above, FyC isn't exactly what we are looking for. Sadly, some of the hispanic musicians have brought a few things to me, but they are precisely the type of thing I'm trying to avoid. They are not trained musicians, and they do not understand why these things would not work with organ. The plan, however, is to have me accompany this group throughout all of Lent, hence the need for a few other resources. Since they learn everything by wrote, however, it seems prudent to leverage the "greatest hits" as it were. I just don't know what they are!

    Pax et bonum,
    James
  • MarkB
    Posts: 1,032
    This forum discussion from thirteen years ago might be relevant to your search:
    https://forum.musicasacra.com/forum/discussion/3054/spanish-traditional-hymns/p1
    Thanked by 1ServiamScores
  • TCJ
    Posts: 975
    I have a list I made a long time ago and have adapted a few hymns for use over the past several years. I'll send you a PM tomorrow if I remember since I have to run to prep for choir practice right now. If not, send me one to remind me.
  • DavidOLGCDavidOLGC
    Posts: 77
    The Source and Summit missal has a selection of hymns in Spanish, too.
  • Don9of11Don9of11
    Posts: 690
    @ ServiamScores
    I don't know if this is relavent to your needs or not but Noel Jones has produced a Spanish hymn book. https://sacredmusiclibrary.com/product/himnario-manual-de-cantos-religiosos-populares/
    Thanked by 1ServiamScores
  • TCJ
    Posts: 975
    Sent a PM, Serviam.
    Thanked by 1ServiamScores
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 2,765
    Thank you all for your kind help!

    I will have to peruse these more thoroughly next week; unfortunately I’ve come down with a case of the crown.