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[Did ever you see the like before]

Tune Information

Title: [Did ever you see the like before]
Place Of Origin: United States
Meter: Irregular
Incipit: 36533 21653 32122
Key: E♭ Major
Source: African-American spiritual
Copyright: Public Domain


Like many spirituals, "Oh, I Know the Lord" was written for responsorial singing. The refrains are sung by the entire group, and a soloist sings the stanzas with melodic and rhythmic freedom. (The soloist's melody descends, like the Lord reaching down his hands!) Sing either unaccompanied (perhaps with E-flat drone humming during the soloist's lines) or with minimal keyboard accompaniment.

Edward Boatner's arrangement was published in Lift Every Voice and Sing (1981). Boatner (b. New Orleans, LA, 1894; d. unknown, 1981) was a composer, educator, choral director, and concert singer. He studied music at Western University, Boston Conservatory, and New England Conservatory, and received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Chicago Musical College, Illinois, in 1932. Best known for his compositions and arrangements of spirituals, Boatner served as the director of music for the National Baptist Convention from 1925 to 1931 and taught at two Texas institutions, Samuel Houston College and Wiley College, in the 1930s.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1988



Piano Solo

  • Spirituals at the Piano: Beloved Melodies Arranged by Peggy Tolson
    Composer/Editor Peggy Tolson
    Published By: Lillenas Publishing Company (1969) pp. 10


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Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #367
Text: Oh, I Know the Lord Laid His Hands on Me
  • Bulletin Score (PDF)
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With Heart and Voice: songs for all God's children #89
Text: Oh, I Know the Lord Laid His Hands on Me
  • Full Score (PDF, XML)
  • Bulletin Score (PDF)
  • Bulletin Score (melody only) (PDF)


Instances (1 - 14 of 14)

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Psalter Hymnal (Gray) #367

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The A.M.E. Zion Hymnal #52

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The Book of Praise #579

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The Faith We Sing #2139


Total Praise #366

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With Heart and Voice #89

Include 9 pre-1979 instances
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