Emily R. Brink is a Senior Research Fellow of the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship and Adjunct Professor of Church Music and Worship at Calvin Theological Seminary, Grand Rapids, Michigan. Her main areas of responsibility are conference planning and global resources. She is program manager of the annual Calvin Symposium on Worship, which draws more than 70 presenters and 1600 participants from around the world. She also travels widely to lecture and to learn about worship in different parts of the world, especially in Asia, where she has lectured in Bangladesh, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, and Taiwan.
Her areas of interest include congregational song from all times and places;… Go to person page >
The tune ES KOMMT EIN SCHIFF GELADEN was originally part of a German Maria-lied, or love song to Mary. The tune became a carol when it was set to a text attributed to the mystic Johannes Tauler (around 1300-1361). It was published with Tauler's text in the Roman Catholic Andernacher Gesangbuch of 1608. Psalter Hymnal editor Emily R. Brink (PHH 158) composed the harmonization in 1985 on the birthday of one of her sisters, whose husband was missing at that time and later found murdered.
This Renaissance melody begins in triple meter but then changes to duple at the midpoint–the only time this happens in the entire Psalter Hymnal! The tune's meter requires keeping a constant two pulses per bar, both in the triple- and duple-meter sections. Sing in unison with sturdy organ support, or try having a choir sing unaccompanied. If this tune is unfamiliar, consider the alternate tune at 565 or sing the text in two long stanzas to a longer tune (7676D).
Seerve1d wants to have this hymn sung at his own funeral. But he has requested that a New Orleans jazz-style interlude be improvised between stanzas 3 and 4 in the tradition of African American funerals in the southern United States. In those funerals music is traditionally played en route to the cemetery, but upbeat, joyful jazz is played as the mourners return home to emphasize their sure belief in a Christian resurrection.
--Psalter Hymnal Handbook