Rhythm Section (Arrangements)

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  • Before Your Manger, Here I Stand / Ich steh an deiner Krippen hier

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    https://musicblog.gregscheer.com/before_your_manger.mp3

    Looking for a Christmas piece that’s a little off the beaten path? This beloved German Christmas carol has been newly translated and arranged. The choir parts are not at all difficult, and the anthem can be accompanied by piano alone. However, if you do have flute, recorder, guitar, or strings available, the music becomes absolutely exquisite.

    Anthem for SATB choir, flute, recorder, classical guitar, and strings. Download includes score and parts; purchase price allows you to print as many copies as you need for your ensemble.

  • Go Down, Moses

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    [audio mp3="https://gregscheer.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/go_down_moses.mp3"][/audio]

    If your church has a jazz band, you’ve got to try this swinging spiritual. The chart is scored for 2 trumpets, alto sax, tenor sax, trombone, flute (optional), and rhythm section. It’s easy enough for high school level players but will make them sound like seasoned pros.

  • Keur Moussa Magnificat (Mon âme exalte le Seigneur)

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    https://musicblog.gregscheer.com/wp-content/uploads/keur_moussa_magnificat-COS.mp3

    In 2019, Church of the Servant commissioned me to arrange a lovely Magnificat by Keur Moussa. The Keur Moussa community, which is something like the Taizé of Senegal, has developed its own style of singing that combines the beautiful austerity of Catholic chant with the insistent rhythms of West Africa. Trying to remain in the spirit of the original piece, this arrangement is complex, but not flashy; exciting, but still mesmerizing.

    Arrangement for SATB choir, flute, strings, guitar, mbira, shakers, dumbek, and drum set. Purchase price includes full score, all instrumental parts, and permission to make multiple copies for choir.

  • Lo, How a Rose

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    [audio mp3="https://gregscheer.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/02-Lo-How-A-Rose.mp3"][/audio]

    One of the most lovely songs of the Advent/Christmas season is turned into a tender jazz ballad. An oft omitted verse is included (“O Flow’r whose fragrance tender…”) and a short soprano solo provides extra vocal texture. This flexible choral anthem includes chord symbols for jazz combo, but it can also be sung a cappella, as in the recording above by the Heinz Chapel Choir of the University of Pittsburgh. The orchestral accompaniment is also flexible, allowing full orchestra or just the strings to support the sound of the choir and piano.

    [audio mp3="https://gregscheer.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/lo_how_a_rose.mp3"][/audio]
  • Mary’s Song (Our King of Peace)

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    [audio mp3="https://gregscheer.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/marys_song.mp3"][/audio]

    Wendell Kimbrough’s setting of Mary’s Song captures the wonder, fear, and obedience of Mary’s response to Gabriel’s message. The song is a perfect fit for Advent, Christmas, and Lessons and Carols services. The choral arrangement places the choir alongside folk instruments, which is a lovely marriage for those who lead blended worship.

  • Psalm 104: Oh, Rejoice in All Your Works

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    https://musicblog.gregscheer.com/kimbrough-psalm_104.mp3

    Wendell Kimbrough’s setting of Psalm 104 won the COS New Psalm Contest in 2014. Since then, I’ve arranged this song for strings, brass, and choir. These arrangements bring out a whole new majestic side to the song.

  • The First Nowell

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    [audio mp3="https://gregscheer.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/scheer-the_first_nowell.mp3"][/audio]

    “The First Nowell” is the quintessential Christmas carol and a classic folk tune, but too many arrangements fetter the flowing melody with four-part harmony. My approach is simple: let the melody sing itself and support it with an accompaniment that keeps things moving forward. After a brief string intro, it starts small–just guitar and solo voice–and then builds momentum over the song’s 6 verses.

  • The God of Abraham Praise (for Chamber/Full Orchestra)

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    [audio mp3="https://gregscheer.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/calvin_orch-the_god_of_abraham.mp3"][/audio]

    This arrangement was first written for chamber orchestra for a Lessons & Carols service, then commissioned for full orchestra by the Calvin College Orchestra and their director, Robert Nordling. The recording above is from the Calvin Orchestra’s premiere of the full orchestra version on March 5, 2011.

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