As written in Hymns, this song is in 2/2 tempo; each measure consists of two half notes. It’s appropriate to a very slow, solemn song like this, but it makes counting really difficult, as there are numerous points where you have to play 16th notes. That’s not bad in standard music notation, but in a tab where everything is a fraction of a half-note, you’d end up counting something like: “and-a-one-uh and-a-two-uh,” etc. Clumsy and confusing. Much better to recast it as 4/4 and eliminate the 16th notes. Eighth notes are bad enough.
This song has been transposed to the key of C. I tried to transpose it to G, which is musically closer to the original, but it was impossible to play, so C it is. That does require the use of a few “unusual” chords, but they are not difficult ones. C/G (pronounced C over G) is just a normal C chord, with a G bass added on the #6 string.
C and Am are played normally, but GaddD is another interesting variation. It is played exactly like a normal G, except the #1 string is not played, and the ring finger frets the #2 or B string in the third space, instead of the #1 string. This chord is sometimes written as Gadd3, because D is the third note in the G scale. It is dead easy to play, even easier than a normal G.
The rest of the chords are all easy barre chords. GIII, CVIII, and FI are all barred E-shapes. The only difference is their position on the guitar neck. G7III is even easier, as it’s just a barred E7-shape.
The words to this hymn were written by Edward P. Kimball, who was the Mormon Tabernacle Choir organist for more than thirty years. He was the organist when Music and the Spoken Word was begun. His son, Ted Kimball, was the first announcer for the show. Edward P. Kimball also wrote the music to "Great God, To Thee My Evening Song" and "The Wintry Day Descending to a Close", two other hymns included in the “green”hymnal. He died in 1935.
The music for this hymn was written by Alexander b. Schreiner. Copyright is held by the LDS Church, Used by permission. This song is NOT in the Public Domain. You may use it for personal or church use, but may not distribute it or charge for it, without written permission of the copyright holder.
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