Authors: Tammy-Jo Mortensen


December 14, 2022

This Lent-Easter 2023 issue (Year A) explores extemporaneous prayer. According to the Oxford Canadian Dictionary, extemporaneous means “spoken or done without preparation.” Sometimes, as artists, we extemporize, too, don’t we? In music and some other art forms, this is called improvisation. Improvising means composing or performing on the spur of...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Blog
November 06, 2022

In the Pentecost 1 issue of Gathering, we explored music library cataloguing. In a similar vein, we will now explore ways people track hymn usage in their services. We’ll begin with a very low-tech method: some musicians keep track in a hymn book. The top margin of the printed hymn...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Jim Allan
Allan Baer
Don Sellsted
Theme(s)
Music and Singing
Worship Column
November 06, 2022

Denmark VU 967 “Amen” Finland VU 297 “All praise to you” VU 518 “As those of old their first-fruits brought” VU 652 “Be still, my soul” VU p. 734 Psalm 13: “Be still, my soul” VU p. 854 Psalm 131: “Be still, my soul” Norway VU 618 “God, when I...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Theme(s)
Music and Singing
Worship Column
September 29, 2022

The focus of this Advent/Christmas/Epiphany issue is cultural appropriation. In the Music for Worship section of Gathering Pentecost 1 2021, we focused on Indigenous composers and music resources. I gained much wisdom from Cree and Dene songwriter Sherryl Sewepagaham a few years ago. She shared some customs from her Cree...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Blog
July 06, 2022

Even though I haven’t been in active music leadership during most of the pandemic, I’ve still learned many things, including how much support the many facets of the church provided us when we needed it most. Help came from colleagues, teamwork between churches, seminars, national United Church support, licensing agencies...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Blog
April 28, 2022

We recently surveyed some Music United members and found that two methods seemed to be used the most: spreadsheets (in Excel or Google Sheets) or a table in a document (in Word or Google Docs). However, we think that LibraryThing or a little database built in Microsoft Access would work...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Theme(s)
Music and Singing
Worship Column
April 28, 2022

In 2019, Emmanuel College partnered with GIA Publications to produce the Emmanuel College Music Series imprint. According to the website, this innovative peer-reviewed publication seeks to empower composers and arrangers to substantiate their craft in an academic environment. In addition to excellent technique, musicianship, and style, this series emphasizes the pedagogical value...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Theme(s)
Music and Singing
Worship Column
April 27, 2022

If you are looking for hymns for Earth Day or for Wild/Forest Church, or for services with a creation theme, then look no further! Our full communion partner, The United Church of Christ in the United States, has posted a wonderfully curated list of hymns called “Sing for the Earth”.

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Blog
April 09, 2022

Looking for Canadian music for handbells? Look no further! The newly launched Handbell Musicians of Canada (HMC) has a new list up on their website. You will find their compositions spreadsheet under Resources. This is a list I built for a presentation at the International Handbell Symposium in Vancouver in...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Blog
April 09, 2022

Some of the most memorable moments I’ve spent with musicians of various churches where I’ve worked has been away from the church itself—on tour or at a retreat. Don’t get me wrong, the time spent at the church is really valuable in many ways, but you sure get to know...

Author(s)
Tammy-Jo Mortensen
Ivan Gregan
Blog