The New Song Never Ends
Hymns, Songs, & Spiritual Songs - Scott Hyslop

Author Scott Hyslop
Released 4/2017
Catalog no. 125-052
Price $19.50 (U.S.)

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Foreword by Carl Schalk

The last half of the 20th-century and the early years of the 21st-century have seen a remarkable outpouring of new hymns, psalms, and spiritual songs--both texts and music. It is an outpouring quite unprecedented since the time of Pietism in the late 17th- and early 18th- centuries, and the periods of revival in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Scott M. Hyslop’s collection The New Song Never Ends: Hymns, Songs, & Spiritual Songs is one of the most recent and more interesting compilations to appear.

The texts, with original musical settings by Hyslop, are drawn from a wide variety of authors, some ancient, but mostly more recent. The larger number of texts are drawn from such well-known authors as Jaroslav J. Vajda, Christopher Weber, Thomas Troeger, and Stephen Starke, but also includes texts by lesser-known writers such as Harriet Warnick--from one of whose texts the title of this collection derives. Other authors represented in this collection include Timothy Dudley-Smith, Shirley Erena Murray, Martin Franzmann, and a number of authors represented by only one text.
Currently the cantor at St. Lorenz Lutheran Church, Frankenmuth, Michigan, Scott Hyslop’s music reflects by his own words his background “as an American Lutheran…under the influence of the rhythmic chorale and Victorian English hymns.” He also acknowledges his own “fascination with and attempt at wedding the genres of art song and hymnody…” While many of the musical settings in this collection are intended to be sung by a musically untrained assembly, others are clearly intended as vehicles for a choir or a soloist. In all this, Hyslop manages to find his own unique voice and his work deserves serious attention and a prominent place among the many voices contributing to the “new song” of our day.

Amid the all too often self-aggrandizing talk about the “new song” in today’s church, where many are all too ready identify their new song and the new song, we might do well to hear what Clement of Alexandria had to say in the 2nd century. Clement, in his Exhortation to the Greeks, reminds us simply that Christ is the new song. It has nothing to do with guitars or banjos, praise bands or bongos. It has even less to do with such slippery and ultimately meaningless terms as “traditional” and “contemporary.” The “new song” is Christ. He is the song that goes on forever. That is something this collection, in both its title and its substance, reminds us of—and which the church would do well to remember.

Carl Schalk
Distinguished Professor of Church Music Emeritus
Concordia University Chicago
River Forest, Illinois


Composer Scott Hyslop’s first collection, The New Song Never Ends: Hymns, Psalms & Spiritual Songs, contains musical settings of 55 texts by a wide range of authors including Jaroslav Vajda, Carl Daw, Timothy Dudley-Smith and Harriet Warnick. Works in this collection span twenty-five years of service as a church musician and clearly reflect the composer’s developing aesthetic over the course of that time. Many of the settings in this collection are intended to be sung by a musically untrained assembly, while others are the intended domain of the soloist or choir. (Download the indexes here)

"Here are 55 texts, most by well-known 20th­-century hymnists, most not found in our Lutheran hymnals. Their tunes are all new, composed and introduced in congregations over the past 25 years by Scott Hyslop, currently cantor at St. Lorenz Lutheran Church, Frankenmuth, MI. Most are for congregational singing; the hymns numbered 5, 20, 23, and 37 are better suited for choir or soloist.

The collection's title, The New Song Never Ends, comes from one of eight hymns by Harriet Warnick, a teacher and colleague in Frankenmuth (Rosa, #42, a simple Short Meter tune reminiscent of Scottish harmony). Also among the hymns are five each by Timothy Dudley-Smith and Stephen Starke, four each by Thomas Tropeger and Jaroslav Vajda, and three by Martin Franzmann (whose hymns, as Hyslop himself notes, are "not easy"). Hyslop's PASCHAL LAMB (#39) is a better fit for "Our Paschal Lamb, That Sets Us Free" than REGION THREE (compare LSB 47 3); his TRUMPETING (#52) for Franzmanri's "Weary of All Trumpeting" is just as martial as DISTLER but arguably more singable for congregations (compare CW 527, With One Voice 785). His tune BERGHOLZ (#8) could well succeed in rescuing Franzmann's neglected worship hymn "O Fearful Place" (compare Worship Supplement 774). In setting Sylvia Dunstan's mission hymn "Go to the World," Hyslop's CHURCHGROVE (#15) throws us a wonderful harmonic curve of a minor third in the second phrase. Other treasures include tunes for two worthy hymns by nineteenth­century Bavarian pastor Wilhelm Loehe (included because of Loehe's historic mission connection with Frankenmuth and St. Lorenz Church): a communion hymn with a folk lilt (FREUDENLIED NEW, #21) and a hymn of praise, LOEHE ("O Son of God, Eternal Lord," #31).

The book is spiral-bound (to lie flat) but also folded inside a sturdy board cover. It is well supplied with indexes for quick reference. I wish this collection had been available back when I was still regularly choosing hymns for worship!" --Cross Accent, Fall/Winter 2017


“Scott Hyslop, church musician and composer, offers a collection of fifty-five tunes compiled from over twenty-five years working with hymnody. The title of the collection is from the first stanza of a text by Harriet Warwick which reminds us that God’s grace is the source of all our song.

Hyslop composed tunes for texts by twenty-nine authors. Although most of the texts set are from recent hymnwriters, historical texts feature notable poets such as John Milton, Robert Burns, and Henry Baker. This collection introduces Hyslop’s colleague Harriet Warwick to a wider audience with eight of her texts. The majority of texts are drawn from the writings of Timothy Dudley-Smith, FHS; Stephen P. Stark; and Christopher Webber with five each. Thomas H. Troeger, FHS, and Jaroslav Vajda, FHS, are represented by four texts each. Other prominent authors included are Carl P. Daw Jr., FHS; Sylvia Dunstan, FHS; Fred Pratt Green, FHS; and Shirley Erena Murray, FHS.

In his Preface, Hyslop admits his collection betrays his “background as an American Lutheran who grew up heavily under the influence of The Lutheran Hymnal (1941) with its peculiar assemblage of German chorales and Victorian hymns.” He also credits influences by Carl Schalk, FHS; Richard Hillert; Paul Manz; and David Cherwien.

With his choice of eclectic texts and musical influences, it is not surprising to discover tunes written in a variety of meters. The score does not display time signatures, but the meters are evident. Overall, the tunes feature strong rhythmic patterns with enough repetition to easily retain, but with enough variety to avoid tedium. Although the majority of tunes are set in major mode, Hyslop does not shy away from minor mode, creating attractive tunes such as AUERNHAMER for Troeger’s “The moon with borrowed light” and EVERGREEN for Murray’s “Hunger Carol.” Melodically the tunes are diatonic, often embracing inflections of the lowered seventh scale step or chromatic mediants.

Many of the texts are set in traditional hymn style; however, the composer skillfully explores the stanza/ refrain structure as in ARCADIA TERRACE and EMERSON AVE. He provides viable alternate tunes for Sylvia Dunstan’s “Go to the world” (CHURCHGROVE) and Troeger’s “As a chalice cast in gold” (CHALICE).

The collection is supported by extensive Notes on the Hymn Tunes, Topical Index, Metrical Index, Authors Index, Tune Names listing, and index of First Lines or Titles. This collection is a good resource for finding new tunes for familiar texts from wordsmiths of various eras.” --The Hymn, Autumn 2020



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