William Walker

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William Walker


Born: 06 May 1809, Union County, South Carolina

Died: 24 September 1875, Spartanburg, South Carolina

Biography William Walker was a teacher, singing school master, composer, arranger, and tunebook compiler. He lived most of his life in Spartansburg. His four books were exceptionally influential and are still cited as sources for many early American psalm-tunes and hymn-tunes. His first book, Southern Harmony (1835), was in four-shape "fa-sol-la" notation, and contained many songs for three part a cappella harmony; it became a principal basis for The Sacred Harp (1844). Many of the songs that he wrote or transcribed from oral sources are still sung today in churches, Sacred Harp singings, concerts, and in recordings. His later book, The Christian Harmony, was in seven-shape "do-re-mi" notation, and has seen a resurgence lately, with reprinted editions and singings devoted to that book.

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List of choral works

Arrangements by William Walker


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  • Walker, William. 1835. The Southern Harmony, and Musical Companion. Second edition, 1837; Third Edition, 1838, Fourth Edition, 1840, Fifth Edition, 1847a, Sixth Edition, 1847b, Seventh Edition, 1854.
  • Walker, William. 1846a. Southern and Western Pocket Harmonist, Intended as an Appendix to the Southern Harmony. Philadelphia: Charles Desilver and G. G. Evans. 160 pp. Second Edition, 1846b, 176 pp., reprinted 1860.
  • Walker, William. 1867. The Christian Harmony. Philadelphia: E. W. Miller and William Walker. 383 pp.

External links

Works composed or arranged by William Walker in his publications, 1835–1867

Title Role Year Pg. K First line T Pt. Comments
An Address for All Composer 1846a 147 B I sing a song which doth belong 4:4 3
The Babe of Bethlehem Composer 1835 78 a Ye nations all, on you I call 6:4 3
Believer and His Soul 1846a 148 A Come, my soul, and let us try 2:4 3
Bound to Die in His Army 1846b 159 F Tis my desire with God to walk 4:4 3
Bruce's Address Arranger 1835 132 C Soldiers of the cross, arise 6:4 3
Christian Prospect 1846a 132 G We have our trials here below 4:4 3
The Christian's Conflicts Composer 1835 131 A See how the wicked kingdom 4:4 3
The Christian's Hope Composer 1835 74 A A few more days on earth to spend 6:8 3
Chrystler's Field 1846a 120 B My brethren all, on you I call 6:8 3
Come and Taste with Me 1846a 112 F Come and taste along with me 4:4 3
Complainer Composer 1835 18 G I am a great complainer 4:4 3
Contented Soldier 1846b 167 C I've listed in the holy war 2:4 3
The Converted Thief Arranger 1835 9 C As on the cross the Savior hung 6:4 3 Alto added by Walker in 1867
Dudley Composer 1840 218 G When I can read my title clear 6:4 3
Experience Composer 1846a 84 a Come all ye people of my nation 4:4 3
Faithful Soldier Arranger 1835 122 B O when shall I see Jesus 4:4 3
French Broad Composer 1847 265 e High o'er the hills the mountains rise 4:4 3
The Good Old Way Composer 1835 156 F Lift up your heads, Immanuel's friends 6:4 3 With hallelujahs
The Good Physician Arranger 1835 49 e How lost was my condition 4:4 3
Hallelujah Composer 1835 107 B And let this feeble body fail 6:4 3
Happy Time 1846a 94 a Oh! happy time, long waited for 6:4 3
Harmony 1835 54 G Away, my doubts, begone, my fears 2:4 3
Heavenly Armor Composer 1835 93 C And if you meet with troubles 4:4 3
The Heavenly March Composer 1840 221 B On Jordan's stormy banks I stand 4:4 3
Hicks' Farewell Arranger 1835 19a a The time is swiftly rolling on 6:4 3
Humble Penitent 1846b 162 B Show pity, Lord,, O Lord, forgive 2:4 3
I Love to Serve the Lord 1846a 158 F Jesus, my all, to heaven is gone 4:4 3
I Want to Go to Glory Arranger 1846b 168 g Jesus, my all, to heaven is gone 4:4 3 "As sung by Rev. L. M. Little"
In That Morning Arranger 1846b 173 f Jesus, my all, to heaven is gone 4:4 3
Indian's Farewell Composer 1835 25b e When shall we all meet again 6:4 3
Invitation Composer 1835 2 B Come ye sinners, poor and wretched 4:4 3
Jerusalem Arranger 1835 11 A Jesus, my all, to heaven has gone 4:4 3 Wesley by William Moore, 1810.
Land of Pleasure Co-Composer 1835 63 A There is a land of pleasure 4:4 3 Ananias Davisson and Walker
The Lone Pilgrim Composer 1854 256 E I came to the place where the lone pilgrim lay 4:4 4
Louisiana Composer 1835 62 B Come little children, now we may 4:4 3
Lovest Thou Me 1846b 164 b Hark, my soul, it is the Lord 6:4 3
Midsummer 1835 56 A How tedious and tasteless the hours 4:4 3
Millennium Composer 1835 75 F The time is soon coming, by the prophets foretold 2:4 3
Missionary Farewell 1846b 169 B Yes, my native land, I love thee 4:4 3
Mourner's Lamentation 1846a 103 C Pour mourning soul! in deep distress 4:4 3
Mutual Love Composer 1835 53a G O when shall I see Jesus 4:4 3
Not Too Late 1846a 108 B Come, ye sinners, poor and wretched 4:4 3
Oh, How Charming 1846b 160 D O when shall I see Jesus 4:4 3
Pardoning Love Composer 1847 268 C In evil long I took delight 3:4 3
Parting Hand Arranger 1835 113 G My Christian friends, in bonds of love 6:4 3
Pleading Savior Arranger 1846a 110 A Now the Savior stands a pleading 2:4 3 Published by Joshua Leavitt, 1830
Resignation Arranger 1846a 54 F My shepherd will supply my need 3:2 3
Returning Prodigal 1846a 140 B Afflictions though they seem severe 4:4 3
Restoration Arranger 1835 5 a Mercy, O thou Son of David 4:4 3 Tune by James P. Carrell, 1821
Shall I Ever Get to Heaven 1846a 119 G When I can read my title clear 4:4 3
Sons of War 1846a 152 a Ye sons of war, I pray draw near 4:3 3
Spartanburg Composer 1835 86 F Ye simple souls that stray 4:4 3
Star in the East Arranger 1835 16 a Hail the blest morn,see the great Mediator 4-4 3 Rearranged by Walker for four parts in 1867
The Sufferings of Christ 1846a 105 A A story most lovely I'll tell 6:4 3
Sweet Harmony 1835 59 G O tell me no more of this world's vain store 3:8 3
Sweet Moments 1846a 165 E The time draws nigh, I must go home 6:4 3
Sweet Prospect Arranger 1835 137 e On Jordan's stormy banks I stand 6:4 4
Sweet Flowers 1846a 134 F How tedious and tasteless the hours 4:4 3
Sweet Rivers Arranger 1835 166 F Sweet rivers of redeeming love 4:4 3
Tender-Hearted Christian 1846a 78 e Come all ye tender-hearted Christians 4:4 3
Thorny Desert 1835 83 G Dark and thorny is the desert 6:8 3
The Trumpeters Arranger 1847 301 A Hark! listen to the trumpeters 4:4 3 "Melody by Rev. Mr. McCloud"
True Happiness Arranger 1835 127 B O, how happy are they 4:4 3 "A very popular revival tune" (Walker 1867)
The Watchman's Call Composer 1835 65 A The watchmen blow the trumpet round 4:4 3
Zion's Soldier 1846a 118 a Christ is set on Zion's hill 4:4 3