Hymns

Hymns

4.7 4
by Beth Nielsen Chapman
     
 
Beth Nielsen Chapman may be better known for her songwriting (she penned Faith Hill's "This Kiss" among other hits), but fans know she's much more. As a vocalist, Chapman's ethereal, fragile sound have threatened to pigeonhole her as a neo-folkie, but her musicality has always been far more expansive than that. On Hymns, this distinctive vocal styling finds its

Overview

Beth Nielsen Chapman may be better known for her songwriting (she penned Faith Hill's "This Kiss" among other hits), but fans know she's much more. As a vocalist, Chapman's ethereal, fragile sound have threatened to pigeonhole her as a neo-folkie, but her musicality has always been far more expansive than that. On Hymns, this distinctive vocal styling finds its perfect subject matter. This collection, sung largely in Latin, is richly evocative, full of spiritual resonance and gentle emotion that shows a deep reverence for the traditions from which these Latin hymns sprang. That's no surprise-Chapman was raised a Catholic, and these hymns were a part of her upbringing. Nor is spiritual subject matter foreign to Chapman, who has given lovely voice to ancient Tibetan prayers on Kirby Shelstad's independently available Dewachen: Land of Bliss project. Like Dewachen, Hymns is reflective and deeply personal; it calls to mind the tenderness of the Nativity, not sweeping symphonic statements. And while Hymns has been released in time for the holidays, this material has relevance no matter what the season. Chapman's Hymns is beautifully uplifting.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
As a very successful and celebrated songwriter, Beth Nielsen Chapman has never chosen an easy road to that bounty. In fact, she's consistently managed to avoid trite sentimentality in her work. Her voice shines through her songs no matter who's singing them. This project is a departure for Chapman, though it is one she has been at work on in one form or another for nearly a decade. These hymns, mostly sung in Latin, come from a larger project of hymns from the religions of the world. Chapman grew up Catholic, and these songs were part of the pre-Vatican II liturgy. These pieces are scored for multiple voices. Chapman herself sings soprano as a lead vocalist and alto with songwriter Pam Rose, as well as tenor with her son Ernest in chorale. Her father, Robert Nielsen, is one of four bass singers; songwriter Mike Reid is another. While some of these pieces are a cappella, others feature spare accompaniment on stringed instruments from harps to cello to classical guitar. The material comes from the Roman liturgy, whether it be processional hymns such as "Veni Veni Emmanuel" to devotionals such as "Salve Regina" and responsorials such as "Dona Nobis Pacem" and "O Sanctissima." There are two pieces in English, with one of them, "Hymn to Mary," an original. These performances are humble in scope. They do not reflect the awe of the heavens as many classical performances do, but instead a smaller, more human spirituality and grace. They are earthy, humble, and deeply moving for the limit of their scope. These songs portray the response of the human soul speaking to the God who speaks within, rather than the one that echoes thunderously from the margins of the universe. But there is something else here that makes Chapman's recording of these age-old pieces so compelling. The weight of history can make a song, especially a devotional, feel oppressive and constraining -- i.e., it needs to be performed "correctly." Chapman feels no such burden on Hymns. These beautiful antiquities are sung reverently with a simple grace that frees them from their chains and makes them resonate, underscoring their meaning, solace, beauty, and stillness.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/02/2004
Label:
Thirty Tigers
UPC:
0635759161025
catalogNumber:
591610
Rank:
9885

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Beth Nielsen Chapman   Primary Artist,Alto,Mandolin,Vocals,Tenor (Vocal),Soprano (Vocal),Alto (Vocal),Classical Guitar
Ysaye Barnwell   Bass,Bass (Vocal),Vocals
John Catchings   Cello
Ernest Chapman   Vocals,Tenor (Vocal)
Bruce Gaitsch   Classical Guitar
Robert Nielsen   Bass,Bass (Vocal),Choir, Chorus
Louis Dean Nunley   Bass,Bass (Vocal),Vocals
Mike Reid   Bass (Vocal),Vocals
Pamela Rose   Vocals,Alto (Vocal)
Chris Carmichael   Strings
Mike Paragone   Overdubs
Nicola A. Montani   Harmony,Vocal Harmony
Dorothy Nielsen   Choir, Chorus
Laura Nielsen   Choir, Chorus
Mary Nielsen   Choir, Chorus
Linda Titolo   Harp
Louis Nunley   Bass (Vocal)
Mike Pargone   Overdubs
Ernest Champan   Tenor (Vocal)
Ysaye M. Barnwell   Bass (Vocal)
Mike Reid   Bass (Vocal)
Robert Nielsen   Vocals

Technical Credits

Franz Schubert   Composer
Beth Nielsen Chapman   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Adaptation
Ysaye Barnwell   Arranger
Todd Harris   Engineer,Engineering
David Leonard   Engineer,Engineering
Pamela Rose   Arranger
Kirby Shelstad   Engineer,Engineering
Traditional   Composer
Mike Paragone   Engineer,overdub engineer
Mike Pargone   Engineering

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Hymns 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I ran across this title while looking to see if Beth Nielsen Chapman had released anything new. I was not raised Catholic, but do attend a Catholic Church with my family, so I had heard some of these before. There is such a sense of calm from listening to this very simple, but spiritual music. I only wish the cover listed the Latin lyrics so that I could make some small attempt at translation. I lent the music to a friend during a tense day at work and she listened to it through 3 straight times before giving it back to me reluctantly.
Guest More than 1 year ago
There are at least two ways to sing a song. One is 'hear me, I'm wonderful!' and another is 'this music is so wonderful, hear it!'. Beth always does the second one, and so marvelously.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Songs that the Church has sadly let slide by for the most part. I grew up with these inspirational and peace filled songs.I remembered them all despite Vatican II's rejection of Latin.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago