it's Sunday

LIbERTY, March 10, 2013 - The writer of the music to the hymn tune LAUDES DOMINI, When Morning Gilds the Skies, is Sir Joseph Barnby. Sir Joseph Barnby (12 August 1838 – 28 January 1896), English musical composer and conductor, son of Thomas Barnby, an organist, was born at York. He was a chorister at York Minster from the age of seven, was educated at the Royal Academy of Music under Cipriani Potter and Charles Lucas, and was appointed in 1862 organist of St. Andrew's, Wells Street, London, where he raised the services to a high degree of excellence.

He was conductor of "Barnby's Choir" from 1864, and in 1871 was appointed, in succession to Charles Gounod, conductor of the Royal Albert Hall Choral Society, a post he held till his death. In 1875 he was precentor and director of music at Eton College, and in 1892 became principal of the Guildhall School of Music, receiving the honour of knighthood in July of that year. His works include an oratorio Rebekah, The Lord is King (Psalm 97), many services and anthems, and 246 hymn tunes (published in 1897 in one volume), as well as some partsongs (among them the popular Sweet and Low), and some pieces for the pipe organ.

He was largely instrumental in stimulating the love for Gounod’s sacred music among the less educated part of the London public, although he displayed little practical sympathy with opera. On the other hand, he organized a remarkable concert performance of Parsifal at the Royal Albert Hall in London in 1884. He conducted the Cardiff Festivals of 1892 and 1895. He died in London and, after a special service in St. Paul's Cathedral was buried in West Norwood Cemetery.

When morning gilds the skies,
My heart awaking cries:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Alike at work and prayer,
To Jesus I repair;
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Does sadness fill my mind?
A solace here I find,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Or fades my earthly bliss?
My comfort still is this,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

When sleep her balm denies,
My silent spirit sighs,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
When evil thoughts molest,
With this I shield my breast:
May Jesus Christ be praised!

The night becomes as day
When from the heart we say:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
The pow’rs of darkness fear
When this sweet chant they hear:
May Jesus Christ be praised!

In heav’n’s eternal bliss
The loveliest strain is this,
[*Let earth’s wide circle round
In joyful notes resound,]
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Let earth, and sea, and sky
From depth to height reply,
May Jesus Christ be praised!

Be this, while life is mine,
My song of love divine:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Sing this eternal song
Through all the ages long:
May Jesus Christ be praised! 


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