For the past 2 weeks I’ve been working and stressing over a hymn based on Psalms 91:9-11 for a Moravian and Methodist hymnal and songbook. After I would compose the counter-point I would check and recheck to make sure I didn’t break any traditional part writing rules. After I checked for parallel 5ths and 8vas I kept getting hidden 5ths, but thank the Lord for Tchaikovsky who said they only matter when it concerns the soprano and bass. Also, I had a couple of times where I doubled the bass of the chord 3 times but it’s ok on tonic. Then to get out of a few tough spots I did the Bach way and used some suspensions. Then it’s ok to have a 5th going to a augmented 4th, and to avoid the parallel 5th, although I know that they are allowed, in the German Augmented 6th chord I used a French Augmented 6th chord and a i6/4 chord. I did use a tritone in the tenor part, but I symbolically used it showing a percentage of fallen angels from Heaven. In measure 12-13 there is a parallel 8va in the soprano and bass, but I did allow that placing a solid single bar line to show 2 separate sections where in a live performance the congregation could probably even do a slight pause before that final section. I will need to experiment with a live group. In some hymns a single dark solid line separates a verse and a chorus. I doubt this is a verse/ chorus piece but I definitely wanted 2 sections, and allowed the parallel to stand out to give tribute to the past before all the rules and to create a different mystical feel because we are about to talk about angels.
Here’s the hymn. It’s called “If You Make the Lord Your Refuge” from Psalms 91:9-11 inspired by the pandemic and unexpected transformation of 2020. Click on the file to see the sheet music, and the rendering uses brass, woodwinds, and organ.
Here's the sheet music: If You Make the Lord Your Refuge sheet music