Chanted Word

A Rosenburg Psalter, Other Songs

This is a project I created in the Spring of 2011.  The texts are from David Rosenburg’s book, A Literary Bible. David Rosenburg is a former editor-in-chief of the Jewish Publication Society and a poet. He’s also the author of the well-known Book of J, which, along with A Literary Bible, are his translations of core texts from Hebrew scripture and efforts to honor disparate and diverse voices from the texts which he feels are often flattened in modern translations for the sake of a unified style. As for the music, my guitar broke last Spring, so I had been experimenting with vocal-only music for Lent.  This is the way I used to sing during seminary when I’d take my plainsong psalter to Far Rockaway beach for an afternoon of screaming into the waves, or up to the top of Twin Peaks during CPE when I needed to shout at the sky for a while. Here it is recorded (at a slightly lower volume) with my Yeti THX mic. The tracks are all improvisations on the texts, hopefully hearkening back to Medieval chant origins in its embellishments on the tones and harmonies in the droning, with secret aspirations to be torch songs. Call it neo-plainsong-soul if you feel so inclined, and be sure to tell me what you think of it.

Psalm 1

Isaiah 8:16-24

Psalm 30

Psalm 82

Isaiah 9:1-7

Psalm 90

Psalm 101

Psalm 114