[Holy Spirit, faithful Guide] (Wells)

Composer: M. M. Wells

Converted to Christianity as a youth at a mission in Buffalo, New York, Marcus Morris Wells (b. Cooperstown, NY, 1815; d. Hartwick, NY, 1895) spent most of his life near Hartwick as a farmer and maker of farm implements. He is remembered in hymnody for writing both the text and tune of "Holy Spirit, Faithful Guide." "On a Saturday afternoon, October 1858, while at work in my cornfield, the sentiment of the hymn came to me," writes Wells. "The next day, Sunday, being a very stormy day, I finished the hymn and wrote the tune for it and sent it to Prof. I. B. Woodbury." Isaac Woodbury was the editor of the New York Musical Pioneer, and the original text and tune were first published in that periodical's November 1858 issue. Bert Polman… Go to person page >

Tune Information

Title: [Holy Spirit, faithful Guide] (Wells)
Composer: M. M. Wells (1858)
Meter: 7.7.7.7 D
Incipit: 55113 21233 517
Key: G Major
Copyright: Public Domain

Notes

Converted to Christianity as a youth at a mission in Buffalo, New York, Marcus Morris Wells (b. Cooperstown, NY, 1815; d. Hartwick, NY, 1895) spent most of his life near Hartwick as a farmer and maker of farm implements. He is remembered in hymnody for writing both the text and tune of "Holy Spirit, Faithful Guide." "On a Saturday afternoon, October 1858, while at work in my cornfield, the sentiment of the hymn came to me," writes Wells. "The next day, Sunday, being a very stormy day, I finished the hymn and wrote the tune for it and sent it to Prof. I. B. Woodbury." Isaac Woodbury was the editor of the New York Musical Pioneer, and the original text and tune were first published in that periodical's November 1858 issue.

GUIDE has been associated with Psalm 121 since the 1887 Psalter. GUIDE is a rounded bar form (AABA); it has basically one rhythmic pattern and a very simple harmony. One antiphonal arrangement that works nicely is to have a soloist ask the opening question and everyone sing the rest in reply. The tune's simplicity invites unaccompanied singing in harmony.

--Psalter Hymnal Handbook, 1988

Arrangements

Organ Solo

  • Easy Organ Library Volume 53
    Composer/Editor Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (2012) pp. 93
  • The Organist Volume 116 Number 3 July August 2012: The Service Music Companion for Church Organists
    Composer/Editors Kevin Uppercue; Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (2012) pp. 93
  • Blessed Be the Name and Other Favorites for Organ
    Composer/Editors Eugene McCluskey; Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1993) pp. 60
  • The Organist Volume 94 Number 3 July 1990: A Bi-Monthly Publication for Church Organists
    Composer/Editors James Mansfield; Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1990) pp. 76
  • Preludes on Hymns from the Gospel Tradition: Settings for Organ by Raymond H. Haan
    Composer/Editor Raymond H. Haan
    Published By: Broadman Press (1989) pp. 9
  • Gospel Hymn Voluntaries Number Four: For the Organ
    Composer/Editor Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1981) pp. 10
  • A Treasury of Gospel Favorites for Organ No. 2
    Composer/Editor Lani Smith
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1978) pp. 70
  • The Organist Volume 82 Number 2 May 1978: A Bi-Monthly Publication for Church Organists
    Composer/Editor Edward Broughton
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1978) pp. 3
  • Easy Organ Library Volume 9: A Collection of Organ Voluntaries for Church Use
    Composer/Editor Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1975) pp. 76
  • The Organist's Collection of: Favorite Gospel Songs Number 3
    Composer/Editor Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1972) pp. 22
  • Herman Voss Presents Organ Favorites Volume Two
    Composer/Editor Hermann Voss
    Published By: Singspiration Music, Inc. (1970) pp. 13
  • Lorenz's Organ Album Volume 53: Three-Staff Voluntaries for the Church Organ
    Composer/Editor Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1970) pp. 35
  • Preludes for Christian Praise: For Any Keyboard Instrument
    Composer/Editor Alec Wyton
    Published By: The Sacred Music Press (1970) pp. 10
  • The Organ Portfolio Volume 33 Number 4 April 1970: A Bi-Monthly Anthology for Church Organists
    Composer/Editors Lani Smith; Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1970) pp. 35
  • Gospel Hymns for Organ: Registered for All Organs
    Composer/Editor Ralph Sunden
    Published By: Pointer System, Inc. (1968) pp. 21
  • The Organ Portfolio Volume 29 Number 4 April 1966: A Bi-Monthly Magazine for Church Organists
    Composer/Editors L. N. Porter; Roger C. Wilson
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1966) pp. 6
  • The Organ Portfolio Volume 19 Number 4 April 1956: Voluntaries for the Church Organ
    Composer/Editor Ellen Jane Lorenz
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1956) pp. 3
  • 42 Chime Solos and Responses from Classical Themes and Favorite Hymns: For Use with Electronic and Pipe Organs
    Composer/Editors Arthur Wildman; Dorothy Wells
    Published By: Belwin Mills Publishing Corporation (1955) pp. 17
  • The Organ Portfolio Volume 15 Number 4 April 1952: Voluntaries for the Church Organ
    Composer/Editor Ellen Jane Lorenz
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1952) pp. 8
  • Lorenz's Organ Chimes Folio: Organ Settings for Festive Occasions
    Composer/Editor Ellen Jane Lorenz
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1947) pp. 63
  • Van Denman Thompson's Hymn Meditations for Pipe Organ Volume Two

    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1946) pp. 39
  • Van Denman Thompson's Hymn Meditations Volume Two
    Composer/Editor Van Denman Thompson
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1942) pp. 39

Piano and Organ Duet

  • Hymn Duos for Organ and Piano Book One: For Organ and Piano
    Composer/Editor Ethel Tench Rogers
    Published By: Lillenas Publishing Company (1971) pp. 11

Piano Solo

  • The Church Pianist Volume 10 Number 5 May June 1994: The Pianist's Companion for the Church Year
    Composer/Editors Hugh S. Livingston, Jr.; Robert J. Hughes
    Published By: Lorenz Publishing Company (1994) pp. 12
  • Rudy Atwood Piano Arrangements Vol. 5
    Composer/Editor Rudy Atwood
    Published By: Alma Records, Inc. (1968) pp. 2
  • Worship Hymns for Piano
    Composer/Editor Winifred Lamb Winans
    Published By: Lillenas Publishing Company (1965) pp. 6

Harmonizations, Introductions, Descants, Intonations

  • 150 Last Verse Harmonies: For Use with the Hymn Books of the Baptist, Methodist, United Reformed and Other Free Churches
    Composer/Editor Robert W. Jones
    Published By: Kevin Mayhew Ltd. (2007) pp. 25
  • More Last Verses: Another Two Hundred Varied Hymn Tune Harmonies
    Composer/Editor Noel Rawsthorne
    Published By: Kevin Mayhew Ltd. (1996) pp. 29

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