It has been 201 years since first performance of my favorite Christmas carol, “Silent Night”. It was in 1818 in Oberndorf, Austria that the song written by Father Joseph Mohr with music by Franz Xaver Gruber was sung in church. The music was provided by a guitar as a flood had damaged the church organ. The name of the church that provided this wonderful gift to us all was, of course, St. Nicholas.
It has also been 151 years since the debut of “O Little Town of Bethlehem”. In 1868 Phillip Brooks, the future Episcopal Bishop of Boston, asked his church organist to write some music for a poem he had written to be performed by the Sunday School students the next Sunday. Lewis Redner went to bed on Saturday night and the tune was still not written. However, as he later wrote, "I was roused from sleep late in the night hearing an angel-strain whispering in my ear, and seizing a piece of music paper I jotted down the treble of the tune as we now have it, and on Sunday morning before going to church I filled in the harmony."
Merry Christmas to you all.
Tim Kane's memories, musings and updates.