Hymn book and metrical psalter

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AThornquist

Puritan Board Doctor
Hi :)
I am in search of both a hymn book and a metrical psalter for both personal and family worship. There are no denominational preferences or anything, I just want God-honoring music.

From the search button I was given the impression that the Trinity Hymnbook and Trinity Psalter were both good. However, I hear that there are psalms in the Trinity Hymnbook, so is the Trinity Psalter necessary?

Thank you for your time.
 

Marrow Man

Drunk with Powder
However, I hear that there are psalms in the Trinity Hymnbook, so is the Trinity Psalter necessary?
Yes, the Psalter actually has the full text psalms. I believe most (all?) of them are actually from the RPCNA psalter, but set to different tunes (from the Trinity hymnal) in many cases. It is a fine psalter, and not expensive either.
 

ADKing

Puritan Board Junior
The Trinity Hymnal does not contain all the verses of all 150 Psalms. It does not even contain a section of each psalm. Some of the ones it does contain are severely paraphrastic.

My favorite Psalter is the Scottish Metrical Psalter (of 1650--aka the Psalms of David in Metre). Since it primarily made up of common meter all the psalms can be sung by people who are still learning tunes.
 

AThornquist

Puritan Board Doctor
Would that be your psalter of choice, Tim? I see that many like the 1650 Scottish Metrical Psalter, though I would prefer something in more modern English. Ultimately the proper rendering of the text is most important to me, though.

-----Added 3/24/2009 at 01:30:08 EST-----

By the way I don't have any thanks available, but thank you both!
 

Marrow Man

Drunk with Powder
The Trinity Psalter is very good, In my humble opinion (which would mean that so is the RPCNA psalter). The one "failing" of the RPCNA psalter is that some of the tunes are unfamiliar and may be hard to sing. If you are familiar enough with the Trinity Hymnal then the Psalter tunes should be easier for you.

The ARP has a book called Bible Songs which contains arrangements of the 150 psalms. Not all are complete psalms, however. Sometimes the word order is a bit odd, and some of the tunes are just plain hard to sing. However, if you grew up on that (as did many of our older churches), it would be no problem. All in what you're used to, I suppose. A RPCNAer would tell you all the tunes in their psalter are easy to sing! :lol:
 

QueenEsther

Puritan Board Sophomore
We have The Book of Psalms For Singing. I went through and matched all the tunes to the corresponding hymn tune since there are like 20 or so. But if you also happen to know someone who plays piano you can have them plunk out the notes for you so you can learn more Psalms.
 

Glenn Ferrell

Puritan Board Junior
As pointed out, the Trinity Psalter does not contain the entire Psalter. If one takes seriously God’s command to sing the Psalms (even if not exclusively), one should be able to sing all 150.

Most of the Psalms in the TH are from the 1912 UPCNA Psalter. While any Psalter is better than no Psalter, and actual attempts at rendering the Psalms is better than Isaac Watts’ paraphrases, the 1912 Psalter often includes rather loose translations, almost paraphrases. There is often a hesitancy to fully render the imprecations of the original; so these are toned down.

The Trinity Psalter has an advantage in that it allows the use of familiar tunes for all 150 Psalms. However, as these tunes come from various sources, the quality of translation is uneven.

The RPCNA Psalms for Singing is probably the best modern attempt at rendering the Psalms. As I’m not as musically inclined as many in the RPCNA, I struggle with some of the tunes.

What works for me is the Scottish Psalter of 1650. Every Psalm is rendered in a Common Meter (8.6.8.6) version, and may thus be sung to any Common Meter or Common Meter Double tune. Some Psalms also have Long Meter (8.8.8.8) or Short Meter (6.6.8.6) versions. With a one or two dozen simple common meter tunes, supplemented by a half dozen Long Meter (e.g. Old Hundredth) or Short Meter tunes, one can sing any part of the Psalter, providing versatility for private, family and congregational singing,

The Scottish Psalter (sold by TBS as Psalms of David in Metre) is in sometimes stilted mid 17th century English, with occasional archaic words or phrases, which may require some explanation. However, the Bible and many historic hymns also have stilted phrases and archaic terms requiring explanation. The TDM has the advantage of being available, cheap (a words only version from TBS costing about $8.00), and the historic common translation for the English speaking world. You may worship in Scotland, England, Ulster, Australia, Singapore, or Boise and find Reformed folk using the Scottish Psalter. The metrical Psalter included in many TBS Bibles is the Scottish 1650 version. So, one may have their Psalter and Bible in one volume.
 

LawrenceU

Puritan Board Doctor
I have virtually no experience singing Psalms or most hymns, actually.
That being the case then I would definitely go with the 1650. As Glen mentioned they are all metrical and all you have to do is learn a few tunes and you are off. You probably already know some that will work.
 

Dearly Bought

Puritan Board Junior
Ditto on the Scottish Psalter recommendations. It's very faithful to the text. You can find nice words-only copies at the Trinitarian Bible Society store (including Bibles bound with it!). There are several copies with music to be found at Crown and Covenant or the version produced by Faith Presbyterian Church Reformed. SWRB carries a copy with John Brown of Haddington's excellent notes, which you can find online in its entirety. Combine it with some incredibly helpful (and cheap) CDs from the Presbyterian Reformed Church and you can't go wrong.

I also have to throw in a plug for the Anglo-Genevan Psalter (CanRC Book of Praise). The music may throw you initially, but I have not found another psalter with settings that match the text as well as the Genevan tunes. Once you begin to grow accustomed to the strange modes, I think you will also find that the tunes were written for congregational singing, not for the lady behind you who secretly wanted to be an opera singer. There are lots of resources out there to aid learning.

My wife and I regularly use both the Scottish and Genevan psalters in our family worship. I think we benefit from the best of the Reformed tradition in this way. Get them both, forget the hymnal. :p
 

AThornquist

Puritan Board Doctor
Thank you all very much :) I decided to buy Psalms for Singing and the Trinity Hymnal, even though it may be hard at first. I have the 1650 as a Google book so I can use that for now and slowly learn how to get through the harder stuff. One of my best friends is an excellent pianist...and there is a gate between our houses...so he can help me out if necessary :)

Woooo singin' psalms! I am starting to feel Presbyterian...
 

Glenn Ferrell

Puritan Board Junior
We have extra copies of the TBS PDM (1650 Scottish Psalter), as well as my wife and I having the metrical Psalter in more than one of our Bibles. We use them for family worship. I generally have extra copies in my car. If anyone expresses an interest in Psalm singing, I offer them a copy and encourage them to sing God’s word. If I purchase a box of 20, they run just over seven dollars each.

We use this Psalter at SRPC, enabling us to sing any part of the Psalter, often something corresponding with the sermon text, with about 40 simple and familiar tunes. These, we supplement with other Psalm versions.

Note, some Psalms are too long for singing as one selection, thus they can be broken into sections. Here is a suggestion of tunes and section divisions:

Pilgrim Covenant Church - Online Facilities > Psalms & Tunes

Most of these suggested tunes may be found as midi, wav or mp3 files online and played on your computer. After a while, you will become familiar with the tunes by name.

My wife tells of going on a church outing by bus when she lived in Scotland, with a group of Free Church folk. Someone would call out the number of a Psalm and name of a tune, and the whole bus would begin to sing from memory. These were not people of great musical ability; just believers whose piety and memory had been shaped by the regular singing of God’s word. Thus, the advantage of a common text and simple, common tunes.
 

jaybird0827

PuritanBoard Honor Roll
Yet another online resource for the 1650 Scottish Metrical Psalter ... click on the word "Precentor" in my signature below.
 
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Der Hawk

Puritan Board Freshman
Trinity Psalter

The Trinity Psalter may be being confused with the Trinity Hymnal in this thread.

It was incorrectly stated that the the Trinity Psalter does not contain the entire Psalter.

From the publisher:
This metrical, words-only psalter has every verse of every psalm. A familiar tune is suggested for each selection. All but four tunes are found in the Trinity Hymnal or The Book of Psalms for Singing

The Trinity Psalter just does not contain all the selections of the RPCNA's Book of Psalms for Singing. This Psalter contains multiple selections for many of the verses in the Psalms. Psalm 23 for instance has four tunes that each cover all the verses.

On another note for those whose churches only use the Trinity Hymnal hree is a link to a work that lists alot of information about each Psalm selection in the Hymnal. Part of that information is what type they are Paraphrase, Metrical translation or another version.

Psalm Settings in the Trinity Hymnal
 

dbroyles

Puritan Board Freshman
The Trinity Psalter may be being confused with the Trinity Hymnal in this thread.

It was incorrectly stated that the the Trinity Psalter does not contain the entire Psalter.

From the publisher:
This metrical, words-only psalter has every verse of every psalm. A familiar tune is suggested for each selection. All but four tunes are found in the Trinity Hymnal or The Book of Psalms for Singing

The Trinity Psalter just does not contain all the selections of the RPCNA's Book of Psalms for Singing. This Psalter contains multiple selections for many of the verses in the Psalms. Psalm 23 for instance has four tunes that each cover all the verses.

Psalm Settings in the Trinity Hymnal
Thanks for the clarification...and welcome to the PB!
 

Edward

Puritanboard Commissioner
As pointed out, the Trinity Psalter does not contain the entire Psalter. .
I don't believe that is correct.

"Trinity Psalter
Capture the majesty and joy of God's inspired worship songs. This metrical, words-only Psalter contains all 150 Psalms. Slim design (3/8" thin). Each metrical selection has a suggested tune (all but four found in Trinity Hymnal) or you can match the tune of your choice. "

GCP | Product/Item# Search -
 
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