Power Point and the singing assembly. 

I am here to tell you:  I love it. 

I love the overhead projection at Our Lady of Peace of all the lyrics to the songs as well as the words to the revised prayers which are still a stumbling block to many Catholics.  Whatever esthetic reservations I had about a cantor operating a slide show with a handheld remote have vanished in the face of such obvious advantages.  Let me count the ways:

1.  We can include any song for community use whether or not it is found in our "print media" hymnal. 

In the last…

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Who's the Boss? Maybe it's the Congregation. 

Sometimes, the congregation is your boss.  In fact, most of the time. 

Perhaps that is tepid theology, but I can't see past their musical and spiritual need to a higher priority.  For example, I provide the Liturgical Music for a Catholic School and those 1200 kids and their teachers own me, whether they know it or not.  Last year, I tried to make a medly of "This Little Light of Mine" and "We Are the Light of the World." 

They groaned.  As I made my effortlless segue to "We Are the Light," they audibly…

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Join the Discussion 

For the first time in years, I belong to a club.  Actually, I may have started this one and I am sure I started the last one when I was twelve. At that time, my friends and I were devoted to the concept of inventing our own sport since we were not very good at the existing ones.  The club lasted about two weeks.

But my new club has lasted a whole year.  It's called the B-attitudes.  That's a working title and we have not officially agreed on its meaning.  Nevermind.  This club is really useful.  We get…

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The Secret of Shantigarh 

There are several secrets to our success. 

Success is a relative term but we can state our interpretation simply:  The Church is full every Sunday except during Super Bowl and the Oscar Night.  Other than that, it's full.  If you are having trouble getting your contemporary/youth/young adult type service up to speed, don't despair.  Shantigarh had the best of all initial conditions for starting a liturgy.

First Secret:  We got to start a liturgy.  There was no 5:30 Mass before we started singing at it…

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Eliza's Recommendations 

Until we have particle transfer beams intead of receiving packages through the post office, snail mail remains more exciting than its electronic spawnlings.  Why?  Because that's how big packages still arrive.  One package arrived at my home, sent by Eliza Poehlman, an inspired liturgical music director in New York who, in apparent appreciation of our Shantigarh repertoire advice, has sent some of her own.  Her note says she is "overflowing with protestant pop ballads, spirituals, and epic David T…

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Five Books You Need to Do the Work 

Why did I say "five?"  I could have said "three" or "twelve" or two hundred.  What I'm getting at is the idea of certain books which will get you through each Sunday.  Gee, I wish I would hear from you on this subject.  Here's what I suggest and why:

World Library Publications, Voices as One, Volumes I and II

Among other reasons, this is where you'll find Paul Tate and Joe Mattingly.  If I don't mention John Angotti it's because he started one of his songs with the words, 'You brood of vipers.'  Avoid…

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Eliza's recent thoughts. 

Eliza has sung with Shantigarh for some time.  She lives in New York and now is the director of her own ensemble (or is it the Parish? Let me know, e.p.)  Her recent e-mail has some good information for the contemporary Christian culture in which we all live.


We do the psalm 63 by angrisano that's in one of the spirit and song books ( http://www.spiritandsong.com/compositions/16822 ) -the harmony part they wrote sucks, HAHA, and I like to do it faster than they do it on the recording, but…

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Another Road Trip 

Why am I doing this?  Because there is too much music out there for you to listen to.  No one has this kind of time.  Listening is now part of my self-designed job description.  For my second road trip, I stayed with OCP's (Spirit and Song) Volume 2.  And I still didn't finish it.  Perhaps, next time, when I get to Berkeley, I should have lunch with Celia at the Mariposa cafe and move on to Portland, Oregon.  My own standards can afford to be stretched by consultation with a smart Cal girl.  One time, we…

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Don't blame us. We are teenagers. 

Shantigarh gets away with a lot.  Basically, our defense is that "we are teenagers.  Don't blame us."  It's a good defense except that I am not a teenager.  I am the director.  I am 57.  They say you are as young as your spine.  That would make me 58.  My ankles hurt from arthritis, so it becomes increasingly difficult to spin around like Diana Ross during "Let It Rise!" or, say, "Go Out In the World," our favorite Easter season "closer." 

We'll get to Ms. Yearwood in just a moment.

We allow ourselves a…

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Road Trip 

I have rented a Ford Focus with a single-chamber CD player and in the passenger seat I have recordings of every song in World Library's Voices as One, Volumes 1 and 2, and OCP's Spirit and song, Volumes 1 and 2.  Our problem is not that we don't have enough good music, it is that we have too much good music.  Liberally mixed in with the bad, it is sometimes difficult to find the time to separate the wheat from the chaff.  But maybe that's why God made the Insterstate 5 and gave me a week off. 

My system…

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