Friday, December 21, 2012

The Sacred Harp, 2012 Edition

A couple weeks ago I announced that a new song book -- The Sacred Harp, Revised Cooper Edition, 2012 -- is now available. The new book was completely re-typeset throughout by Karen Willard of Buckley, Washington. 110 years after Mr. W. M. Cooper introduced his revision of The Sacred Harp in 1902, this is the first complete front-to-back revision since it was first published. Some songs are moved to give them more room, but no songs were removed from the book. This book is the culmination of the vision many Sacred Harp singers saw. The Revision Committee, Board of Directors, Sacred Harp Book Company, and Colson Printing have combined to produce a very fine book. They deserve our sincerest gratitude. 

Highlighted below are some of the changes and improvements:

*All pages were completely re-typeset by Karen Willard, from the front cover to the last page of the index.
*The new edition is 1/2 inch taller and 1/2 inch wider than before.
*Tinted paper is used to reduce glare and to improve readability.
*Typographical errors in music and poetry were corrected, as well as musical errors.
*All remaining uses of "etc." were replaced with words.
*Alto parts that were in the alto clef were moved to the treble clef.
*Additional stanzas of poetry were added to 95 songs (and in a few cases a few stanzas were removed; e.g. 582)
*New title: The Sacred Harp, Revised Cooper Edition, 2012
*List of all previous known editions of the Cooper line of Sacred Harp, p. ii.
*The number of pages was increased to 608, first, to relieve crowding, and, second, to add new tunes.
*Crowded songs were moved. (e.g. "Worcester" moves to 588 and gets 1-1/2 pages, "The Judgment" moves to 592 and gets 2 pages).
*"Footnotes" are added to help the singer find songs that were moved.
*No songs were removed from the book and 14 songs were added, for a total of 611 tunes (not counting the two in the rudiments). 
*Twelve added tunes are composed by contemporary singers (Mars Hill Morning, Nightfall, North Jersey, Wiley, Tallahassee, Rest for the Soul, Wells Second, Traveler's Rest - Samson, Gosia, Every Grace, Sweet Reunion, National Blessings) 
*Two added tunes are 18th century compositions (Peterborough, Savannah).
*Cooper's "Suggestions" are returned to the book, p. viii.
*Rudiments adopts the raised minor sixth theory, p. xx, xxiv.
*Rudiments adds new "Definition of Musical Terms", p. xxv.
*Index moves to the back of the book and adds sections for finding "Anthems," "Duets," and "Major/Minor Companions;" Minor tunes are in bold print, making it obvious in the index which tunes are major or minor.
*Composers and hymn-writers are credited as accurately as possible with the most current information available.

These are not all of the changes, but should give a good idea just how large a project the revision committee undertook.

The base price of the 2012 edition is $20.00 per book, regardless of the quantity purchased. Bulk orders are by case (10 books per case). Shipping charges to U.S. addresses are: First book (or one book) $5.00; for additional books up to 5 books, add $2.00 per book; for a case of ten books, add $20.00. Inquire about shipping charges for orders sent to non-U.S. addresses. Make checks payable to the Sacred Harp Book Co. Address all orders and inquiries to Bill Aplin, Secretary/Treasurer, Sacred Harp Book Co. Inc., 200 South Johnson St., Samson, AL 36477, or e-mail aplinbill-at-gmail-dot-com, or phone 334-898-7253.

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