God Be in My Head
by Robert G. Farrell
A collection of 12 accessible choral anthems.
For over 50 years, Robert Farrell has dedicated his life to composing music for the Church. A prolific composer and organist, Farrell now offers his first, full-length collection with OCP, which includes pieces published over the last decade.
While his music can be characterized as ecumenical, Farrell nevertheless chooses to set texts within the Catholic choral tradition, making this collection appropriate for liturgical use. The pieces are highly accessible for most choirs, and six of the anthems are offered with keyboard accompaniments, allowing musicians to opt for piano if an organ is unavailable.
Music directors are routinely finding Farrell’s music to be among their choir’s favorite works. With wonderful melodies supported by imaginative harmonic settings, Farrell fully explores each text, creating pieces for many liturgical moments.
Pieces for the entire year
With an evocative and exciting organ part, “Savior of the Nations, Come” features subtle text painting and interesting vocal writing — an ideal choice for the season of Advent.
Offering prominent organ, Farrell’s setting of “The Wexford Carol” is both simple and stirring. It serves as a wonderful addition to a choir’s Christmas repertoire.
“Remain in My Love,” a short, meditative choral anthem with a verbatim setting of John 15:9–12, is scored for SAB choir and keyboard. With themes of discipleship and God’s love, it is especially appropriate for use during the Lenten and Easter seasons.
And lastly, “God Be in My Head” is a gentle prayer of yearning for use throughout the liturgical year. This flowing piece is set for SATB choir and keyboard.
List of Songs:
The Wexford Carol
Peace I Leave with You
Savior of the Nations, Come
I Know That My Redeemer Lives
O Gladsome Light
As Lately, We Watched
O Esca Viatorum
Angel Voices, Richly Blending
God Be in My Head
God So Loved the World
Puer Natus in Bethlehem
Remain in My Love
Robert has been composing sacred choral music since he was in high school. Some of his recognizable compositions include “Peace, I Leave with You” and “Savior of the Nations, Come.”
Robert was originally accepted as an organist/composition major at Carneige Mellon University but instead graduated with degrees in Piano Performance and Music Education. For the past thirty years, he has taught high school choir and general music, while serving as a composer in various churches.
Choral music touches his soul and purifies his heart. When his music is performed, he feels as though he is doing what he was meant to do: helping to elevate the level of spirituality in the congregation. As he writes music for worship, he hopes to do the text justice and that it will bless the listeners with a heightened feeling of goodness — as he puts it, “Godness.”
His composition “Peace, I Leave with You,” written for a passing colleague, was showcased at the NPM Convention 2016. His arrangement of “Savior of the Nations, Come” was his first piece published with OCP.
Robert lives in Pittsburgh, PA, where he is composer-in-residence at St. Paul Cathedral.