At Honiton Sovereign Grace Meeting we have made use of a number of freely available hymn tunes to accompany the hymns in ‘Gadsby’s’ hymnal. This site seeks to bring together a number of these hymn tunes (produced as MIDI music files for playback on PCs or Midi compatible keyboards), grouping them together by Metre, and to provide ‘mappings’ from hymnbooks to suitable tunes to accompany the hymns. It is hoped that not only will it serve as a personal ‘resource’ of use to ourselves, but that other congregations and individuals may be able to make use of the fruit of our labours.

The website is in its very early stages, and indeed, may take some time before its contents are in any way ‘comprehensive’, but my primary intention at the present is to upload a number of MIDI tunes which we have been using and provide a ‘map’ of hymns to tunes for ‘Gadsby’s’  Hymnbook. In future I may provide a similar ‘map’ for other hymnbooks (possibly the original ‘Christian Hymns’), but for now I’ll concentrate on Gadsby’s.

A number of the MIDI tunes were originally downloaded from various websites, mainly the ‘Cyber Hymnal’. It would appear however, that the ‘Cyber Hymnal’ is no longer available online at its original location, and therefore the MIDI tunes which were once available are no longer available for download from that site. It is that fact that provides some of the stimulus for creating this site.

Several other tunes are those I have entered myself (from the Companion Tunebook for ‘Gadsby’s’) using a program called ‘Anvil Studio’ which allows music to be entered using standard music notation, and for MIDI tune files to be created from the results. I highly recommend Anvil Studio for such purposes. It is available as a free download from www.AnvilStudio.com .

The various tunes I am uploading will be grouped in posts on the Tunes page here according to their Metre (for example CM, Common Metre). They can be downloaded simply by clicking the link and following the instructions (currently the files are hosted on a website called Box.net) – if clicked the files should launch (on a PC) Windows Media Player, which can play back MIDI files. If you wish to, the files can be loaded into Anvil Studio for playback or editing (including the changing of instruments and tempo).

The tunes have been generally produced using a ‘Church Organ’ instrument, which out of the MIDI choices available, I find produces good results. Using Anvil Studio, or a similar package, the instruments can be varied however.

The tunes are also generally arranged as being one verse long. To play back a whole hymn you can simply play on repeat play (using Windows Media Player) and stop at the end, or you could load the tune into Anvil Studio, and using cut & paste, repeat the tune for however many verses you want.

On the ‘Gadsby’s’ pages you should find ‘maps’, listing the hymn numbers used in ‘Gadsby’s’ Hymnbook, and providing links to suggested tunes which can be used for that hymn’s metre. These tunes aren’t always the ‘usual’ choices for each hymn (as I said, this website is in its early days), but as I upload more tunes and ‘refine’ the maps, I hope to improve on the choices. For the present, however, it does at least provide some choices for various hymns.

Ian Potts (May 2009)

P.S. For those who want to see the words to the 1156 hymns from Gadsby’s which are mapped on here, you can download the hymnbook as a Word file from here: Gospel Standard Trust Website – Downloads

P.P.S. What is grace…? Have a listen to The Gospel of the Grace of God or True Grace.

7 Responses to “About”

  1. Ian Potts Says:

    Several new tunes have now been uploaded.

  2. Ian Potts Says:

    There is also a complete set of mapping pages for the 1156 hymns in Gadsby’s Hymns. Not every hymn within the set is yet mapped, but most are.

    Obviously it is still very early days, with only a limited number of tunes provided on here, but little by little the range is expanding.

  3. Ian Potts Says:

    Thanks Terry. I knew that site had been ‘down’ for a while, so it is good to know it is available again – and to have the address.

  4. David Lamb Says:

    Whilst it can only be good to bring together tunes and words, it seems confusing to use the title “Grace Hymns”, as this is the title of a hymn book published by Grace Publications Trust (here in the UK) in the 1970s, and still used today. Probably too late to change now, I imagine!

    Every blessing,

    David Lamb

  5. Ian Potts Says:

    Thanks David – you’re quite right about the ‘Grace Hymns’ hymn-book. At the time of creating this site I’d forgotten about that one, and as I wanted the site address to be short and memorable ‘gracehymns’ seemed a good choice. But given the potential confusion I’ve changed the title to ‘Grace & Truth Hymns’ now. The URL is the same, but the title should make it more distinct.

  6. Simon Petitt Says:

    Its been a real delight to make an ‘accidental’ discovery of your web-site; so much spiritual profit to be gained through listening again to tunes which have allowed me to recall uplifting hymns now sadly passed out of my experience. Many thanks

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