Hail Mary: Gentle Woman - C. Landry
  • I checked our line-up for this weekend at my parish, and the Communion hymn is Landry’s “Hail Mary: Gentle Woman.” This seems to have become a staple at all Marian solemnities/feasts in my parish, and the people gush over it. To me, there are so many other good options. Landry’s text and music is just so “bleh” and syrupy to me.

    I’m assuming this is rarely used by members of this forum.
    Thanked by 2Don9of11 KARU27
  • MarkB
    Posts: 1,041
    I've quietly retired it because I agree with your assessment. It's requested at funerals occasionally.

    My music for this Sunday's Solemnity:
    Prelude: organ improvisation on the Salve Regina chant
    Entrance: Immaculate Mary
    Offertory: Mary's Song (Rieth)
    Communion: Ave Verum chant
    Communion: Ubi Caritas (Hurd)
    Recessional: Hail, Holy Queen

    This fall I plan to teach the choir the Arcadelt Ave Maria to add to our Marian feast day musical options. Eventually the chant Ave Maria and the chant Salve Regina.

    I suspect that the people who love Landry's HMGW grew up with it and weren't exposed to anything better. It's nostalgic for Boomers. I don't think young people like it. The book "Why Catholics Can't Sing" excoriated it for being unsingable for a congregation due to rhythmic irregularities.
    Thanked by 1Don9of11
  • Catholic Z09,

    How did that piece make it to the Communion hymn slot?
  • Liam
    Posts: 5,005
    HMGW tends to invite sloppy entrances and finishing of lines, creating something of a scattershot acoustical effect. It's one of the squishiest things commonly encountered these days: it belongs in a category of popular songs that are never capable of being rendered well but that remain nonetheless somewhat popular. My liturgical and musical bias strongly leans against keeping such things in repertoire.

    Also, please don't use Boomers to cover a much broader demographic array that get elided in the process. The first half of the Boomer generation wasn't much in charge of parishes until the second half of the 1980s. In American pop culture terms, it was the Greatest (and, actually, Lost) Generations that were mostly responsible for implementing Vatican II, and the Silent Generation that were the most immediate heirs to that project.
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • Liam
    Posts: 5,005
    Meanwhile, a setting of the Magnificat is always appropriate as an option for Communion.
  • Even a lot of the traditional Marian hymns are pretty syrupy, especially that one about lisping children.
    Thanked by 1Carol
  • Don9of11Don9of11
    Posts: 693
    St. Paul's in Akron, Ohio, MD line up is the following:

    Prelude - Hail Mary, Gentle Woman
    Entrance: Hail Holy Queen Enthroned Above
    Entrance Antiphon: Today O Mary you have been taken into heaven.
    Mass settings St. Joseph by Paul Tate.
    Responsorial: Proulx Cantor Book of Acclamations "Blessed are they who hear the word of God and observe it.
    Offertory: Ave Maria by Giulio Caccini, arrang. By Patrick Liebergen
    Communion: Magnificat, Gather Hymnal #101
    Following communion we have Benediction, O Salutaris, Immaculate Mary, Tantum Ergo, Holy God We Praise Thy Name.

    This will be the first mass since the pandemic restrictions were lifted that the choir is singing.
    Thanked by 1Jeffrey Quick
  • We are doing:
    Entrance-Daily Daily Sing to Mary
    Offertory-Immaculate Mary
    Communion-Jesus My Lord, My God, My All
    Recessional-Hail Holy Queen
  • Chris,

    I agree. I don’t think it’s appropriate at any point in the Mass but especially Communion. I don’t think my current MD sees an issue with it, seeing as we’ve done a Marian hymn at Communion for the past few Marian holy days. Former MD always did a version of the Magnificat.

    Nathan, I like the use of “Jesus, My Lord, My God, My All” for Communion — “Had I but Mary’s sinless heart…” nice!
  • That's my go to communion hymn for Marian holy days, for exactly the verse you pointed out.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,501
    It's not good. But we need a vernacular setting of the Angelic Salutation.

    Although there's one in the St Gregory Hymnal, it is also, though differently, not good.
    Thanked by 1PaxMelodious
  • Kathy,

    Do you mean the Angelus?
  • davido
    Posts: 898
    We have The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came.
  • I’ve always thought of “The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came” as a choral piece. I’ve been in a few churches that have done it as a congregational hymn, and it never seemed to catch on….sorta like “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming.”
    Thanked by 1a_f_hawkins
  • Caleferink
    Posts: 432
    Hail Mary: Gentle Woman at Communion - or really anytime outside a Girl Scout campfire - is baffling on so many levels.

    Here's what I have lined up:

    Organ Prelude: Ave Maria from Gerald Near's Saint Augustine Organbook
    Processional: Sing We of the Blessed Mother
    Introit: Simple English Propers
    Psalm 132 for Vigil, Psalm 45 for Day: Gelineau
    Offertory: Arcadelt Ave Maria at Mass with quartet, Schubert Ave Maria or Sing of Mary at Masses with cantor only
    Communion: Simple English Propers + Chepponis' Magnificat
    Closing:Hail, Holy Queen Enthroned Above
    Postlude: Praeludium No. 1 in C from Hermann Schroeder's 6 Preludes and Intermezzi
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 2,069
    Since this is turning into a "What will you sing for Assumption?" thread...
    St. Sebastian Akron OH, 1 PM

    Hymn: Hail Holy Queen Enthroned Above
    Mass IX, Credo III
    Offertory: Tota pulchra es (Perosi)
    Communion: O Maria virgo pia (14th c.)

    3 singers, plus a substitute organist who has never done the TLM before.
  • I'll be away this weekend, going on a walking pilgrimage. But my schola at my new job has been built to practically run itself (the singers all came with me from my days at the Choir School and follow me around to various churches). There are 2 organists besides myself in the ensemble, so I can basically leave it whenever I need to. Of course, I prefer to be there...

    Entrance: Sing of Mary, pure and lowly (tune: RAQUEL)
    Gloria/Agnus Dei: from Missa Secunda - Hassler
    Psalm: from Schonbergian's Parish Gradual, using the Anglican chant option
    Offertory: Ave Maria - Gallus (attr. Victoria)
    Communion: Magnificat Septimi Toni - Lassus
    Hymn: Mary, woman of the promise (tune: DRAKE'S BROUGHTON)
    Concluding hymn: Sing we of the blessed Mother (tune: RUSTINGTON)

    The guys were very excited to see the Lassus on the list for Sunday. It's been a schola favourite for a while now.
    Thanked by 1ghmus7
  • ServiamScores
    Posts: 2,781
    Here's a nice alternative marian hymn which can be sung by modest scholas as a pseudo motet (which we will do during communion this week). My choir loves this.

    "O Maria, Virgo Pia" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8FFGy0NWTaY

    (and to the point of the OP: I agree... I've retired HMGW from our repertoire. There are so many other better options.)

    Also, if anyone is looking for something familiar but a little off the beaten path, antiphonrenewal.com has a great option for the solemnity which we are doing for the processional hymn to Pleading Saviour.
  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 1,306
    What’s Schonbergian’s Parish Gradual?
  • Schönbergian
    Posts: 1,063

    What’s Schonbergian’s Parish Gradual?
    My project to provide through-composed psalms and melismatic Alleluias for general parish use using the Canadian English Lectionary. Progress has stalled due to the lack of response from the CCCB on approving use of the Lectionary text; however, some isolated examples of my work can be found here.
  • ghmus7
    Posts: 1,474
    Can we be honest? It is truly banal (ask MJO about this) and I think has two chords.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,501
    Three. But yes.
  • Hey, don't forget the innovative and forward-thinking bVII and V/V he sneaks in! /purple
  • Caleferink
    Posts: 432
    @ghmus7 I think it's 4 chords. His "Abba, Father" is a 2-chord ditty - I remember because a choir I accompanied in high school did it ad nauseum, and I think after a little while I could play it while literally dozing off.
  • tandrews
    Posts: 164
    Anyone else get the Gordon Lightfoot vibe when hearing this song?
  • davido
    Posts: 898
    No, Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald is Gather Us In
  • Andrew_Malton
    Posts: 1,169
    Except WOTEF is a masterpiece.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,956
    Gather us in on the Edmund Fitzgerald.
    Gather us in on the floor of the sea.
    Slosh us around in Davy Jones locker.
    Plenty good fishes for you and for me.
    la la la la la la la (interlude)