Commit Your Way to God the Lord
- The following article is from the Psalter Hymnal Handbook.
Edward Miller (b. Norwich, England, 1735; d. Doncaster, Yorkshire, England, 1807) adapted ROCKINGHAM from an earlier tune, TUNEBRIDGE, which had been published in Aaron Williams's A Second Supplement to Psalmody in Miniature (c. 1780). ROCKINGHAM has long associations in Great Britain and North America with Isaac Watts' "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross" (384). The tune title refers to a friend and patron of Edward Miller, the Marquis of Rockingham, who served twice as Great Britain's prime minister.
Miller's father had made his living laying brick roads, and the young Edward became an apprentice in the same trade. Unhappy with that profession, however, he ran away to the town of Lynn and studied music with Charles Burney, the most prominent music historian of his day. A competent flute and organ player, he was organist at the parish church in Doncaster from 1756 to 1807. Miller was active in the musical life of the Doncaster region and composed keyboard sonatas and church music. His most influential publications were The Psalms of David for the Use of Parish Churches (1790), in which he sought to reform metrical psalmody (and which included ROCKINGHAM), and David's Harp(1805), an important Methodist tunebook issued by Miller with his son.
ROCKINGHAM (or ROCKINGHAM OLD) is one of the finest long-meter tunes in the history of church music and is much loved by those who sing in harmony. A slight hold (stretching rather than adding a beat) is appropriate at the end of the second phrase and helps to provide a sense of two long musical lines.
- Visit hymnary.org for more information on this song and additional resources.
- The following are alternative accompaniments for this tune, ROCKINGHAM (OLD)
Alternative Harmonization for Organ and Descant Resources:
- Archer, Malcolm. After the Last Verse. Kevin Mayhew ISBN 0 86209 502 6 
- Fedak, Alfred V. 25 More Harmonizations. Selah 160-729 
- Mawby, Colin. Hymns for Occasions. Kevin Mayhew ISBN 0-86209-568-9 
- McKinney, Howard D. Preludes for Fifty-Five Well-Known Hymn Tunes. J. Fischer 9770 
- Noble, T. Tertius. Free Organ Accompaniments to One Hundred Well-Known Hymn Tunes. J. Fischer 8175 
- Rawsthorne, Noel. 200 Last Verses. Kevin Mayhew ISBN 0 86209 189 6 
- Shaw, Geoffrey. The Descant Hymn-Tune Book bk 1. Novello 15207
- Thiman, Eric. Varied Accompaniments to Thirty-Four Well-Known Hymn Tunes. Oxford ISBN 0 19 323210 3 
- Wilkinson, John T. One Hundred and Four Descants for “The Hymn Book”. enThusia 
- Wyton, Alec. New Shoots from Old Roots. SMP KK 279 
Alternative Harmonization for Piano:
- Jefferson, Thomas W. Let It Rip! At the Piano. vol. 2 Augsburg ISBN 0-8006-7580-0 
- Porter, Rachel Trelstad. Let It Rip! At the Piano. Augsburg 11-11045 
- Words: Permitted with a license from CCLI.com or from OneLicense.net. If you do not own one of these licenses, please contact the copyright holder for permission.
- Music: The Music is in the Public Domain; you do not need permission to project or reprint the Music.