It has to be unique in my experience of playing weddings: “Let All Mortal Flesh” for Communion. I’ve sung the tune lots, but never played it much–not on guitar. The small group (two singers, violinist, plus me) providing music ministry at a colleague’s wedding this Saturday had a great (but long) rehearsal tonight. For me the highlight was when it was suggested I bring out my guitar for the Communion song.
I dropped the lowest string down to D (this is called drop-D tuning) and played around with altered chords, the open harmonics, hammer-ons and -offs, and some percussion. Getting all four down at the same time is going to take some work. But I’m psyched to get this humming by the wedding day.
I have to say the guitar arrangement in Gather Comprehensive … stinks. Where did they find these clunkers? They should have hired me to give them some nice artistic guitar arrangements. These tunes are in the public domain, so I can pretty much play whatever I can come up with and go with it. If I get a nice recording of it, I’ll post it later.
The text of the hymn:
Let all mortal flesh keep silence,
And with fear and trembling stand;
Ponder nothing earthly minded,
For with blessing in His hand,
Christ our God to earth descendeth,
Our full homage to demand.
King of kings, yet born of Mary,
As of old on earth He stood,
Lord of lords, in human vesture,
In the body and the blood;
He will give to all the faithful
His own self for heavenly food.
Rank on rank the host of heaven
Spreads its vanguard on the way,
As the Light of light descendeth
From the realms of endless day,
That the powers of hell may vanish
As the darkness clears away.
At His feet the six wingèd seraph,
Cherubim with sleepless eye,
Veil their faces to the presence,
As with ceaseless voice they cry:
Alleluia, Lord Most High!
Pretty good for a wedding, eh?