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To Know Christ and to Make Him Known

Mar. 17, 2019: “O Lord, Increase my Faith”

Today’s Music: The anthem is by Orlando Gibbons, a great English organist and composer who died in 1625, having served as head of the royal chapel for King James I (he of the Bible commissioning). Gibbons lived during the transition from the imitative polyphony of the Renaissance to the simpler textures of the early Baroque period. Texture is how “busy” the music is, and “O Lord, increase my faith” illustrates the transitional style. It begins with all the voices singing in the same rhythm. But soon you hear some imitation, tenors beginning with “endue me with wisdom” and the other voices echoing and piling on. This is even more noticeable “in all my adversity,” but the texture simplifies at “sweet Jesus say Amen.” David Boelzner