Friday, 6 April 2012

The Royal banners forward go

Many years ago - early 1988 to be precise - I had glandular fever and was forced to have a couple of months off work. At times I was actually very ill, but at other times I really rather enjoyed having the time off. It was just after we had moved to our first flat and I had decorating to do, and our wedding was only a few months away.

I took to listening to Radio 3 for a couple of hours each day. This was where I first heard Arvo Part for instance. I also read 6 volumes of Jung's Collected Works during this period - the four Alchemy works, Symbols of Transformation and Psychology and Religion. And I heard a choral evensong with one of the most beautiful hymns in it that I had ever heard, "The Royal banners forward go". Somewhere in the garage is the cassette recording I made of this. If I could find it, it would be worth setting up my cassette deck linked to the PC to digitize it.

Last week, on a download site that sometimes features choral evensong, there was a recording from Southwark Cathedral that featured the same hymn. I have wanted to hear this again for years, but was actually quite disappointed by the version. The version from 1988 had been a deeply spiritual sound, the newer one was quite ordinary I thought.

Maybe when I am next hunting through boxes in the garage . . . . .

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