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GOSPEL

Forward
Music and Lyrics written by Bryon Black II
SATB and piano with solo

This gospel piece can be performed by a chorus or a church worship team, with either piano or the addition of a band (acoustic guitar, bass and drums). It was premiered by the Kent State University Gospel Choir in 2021. I hope this song will encourage the listener that even in seasons of heavy change, we can still move FORWARD into promise, new hope, and opportunity.

**Contact Bryon Black II for perusals of the chord chart and bass guitar scores.

Costs:
$3.50/SATB and piano score
$2.00/lead sheet score
$2.00/bass guitar score
$2.00/chord chart
$10.00/SATB Audio Practice Tracks

Performed by The Kent State University Gospel Choir, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2021

SPIRITUALS

Hold On Just a Little While Longer
Traditional Spiritual, arranged by Bryon Black II
Additional Text by Benjamin Isaiah Black
SATB div. with Alto solo

The texts of many African-American spirituals were created during slavery, to communicate an escape to freedom or a connection to their faith in God while they dealt with many trials and tribulations. The melody of this song would likely have been heard as a “field holler”, with a single voice crying out a simple, repeated text that speaks for itself very clearly.

The chorus of this piece builds a foundation towards the cornerstone of the message, supporting a soloist or treble voices who would deliver the melody in a way that calls back to how it would have been sung several years ago. The core message of this piece and the added text all work together to deliver a hopeful message that rings true today through life’s trials we all face – we often need to be reminded to just ‘hold on…just a little while longer. Everything will be all right.’

Cost: $3.50/score
Voice Practice Tracks: $10.00

Performed for “In the Spirit: An Encounter with Spirituals”, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2018

Steal Away
Traditional Spiritual, arranged by Bryon Black II
SATB div. with piano
*TBB arrangement available upon request only

Using the piano part to move in a gently rocking 12/8-time signature, I leaned more into the gentle solace that this piece provides in its’ words. There’s a comfort that the words provide every time you hear “steal away, steal away to Jesus…steal away home, I ain’t got long to stay here.” There’s a comfortable acceptance of the peace we receive in our belief that the troubles of this world will be nothing compared to what we are stealing away home to in the next life…most importantly, we don’t have long to stay here.

Cost: $3.00/score
Voice Practice Tracks: $10.00

Performed for “In the Spirit: An Encounter with Spirituals”, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2018

Walk Together Children
Traditional Spiritual, arranged by Bryon Black II
SATB div.

Centuries later, African-American slaves referenced Biblical stories in their songs in order to cling to hope, expressing how it represented their prayers of freedom and homegoing to God as their promised land for a better life. This strong hope and faith maintained a tradition of strength and perseverance that carries strong in our community to this day. It also led to a piece that has inspired several wonderful choral arrangements enjoyed by many around the world. One of my goals for this arrangement was to tie together both choral ideas that I was influenced by, and the feel of how it would have been sung in a traditional church house with the utmost jubilance so many years ago.

So this arrangement encourages you to stay strong, to persevere, to walk together, pray together, sing together, love together, and even shout together as we go forward in this life. Walk together children, and don’t you get weary! Why? Because there’s a great camp meeting in the promised land!

Cost: $3.00/score

Performed by The Harvest Choir, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2019

ORIGINAL/ADVANCED CHORALS

Magnificasti me mirabilia
Composed by Bryon Black II
SATB div. with Soprano solo

The text of this piece comes from Psalm 139:14 – “I will praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Marvelous are your works, and that my soul knows very well.” Using intertwining vocal lines, and a recitative-style soprano solo, this composition reminds the listener that we were created and made unique, beautiful and wonderful.

Cost: $3.00/score

Performed by The Harvest Choir, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2019

And let us not be weary
Composed by Bryon Black II
SATB div.

In the Biblical book of Galatians, the apostle Paul shares messages of encouragement from God to a church in Galatia. One of these messages in chapter 6 reads “And let us not be weary in well-doing, for in due season, we shall reap a harvest of blessing.” Life bring many positive and negative experiences to grow from; however, the encouragement to not give up in challenging times is a strong message for all. These words inspired me to compose music that would draw out both the comforting aspect of this verse, and the idea of experiencing plentiful blessings. The piece opens gently, and gradually develops into several vocal lines to paint a wider texture of the “harvest of blessing.”

Cost: $3.50/score
Voice Practice Tracks: $10.00

Performed by the Slippery Rock University Chorale, conducted by Dr. Stephen Barr, 2017

Psalm 42
Composed by Bryon Black II
SATB div. with SATB soli

This haunting composition re-imagines King David’s psalm of worship using bell-tone entrances, gentle 6/8 movement and a solo quartet to set a heavenly atmosphere.

Cost: $4.00/score

Performed by The Harvest Choir, conducted by Durrell LeGrair, 2017

Brotherhood
Composed by Bryon Black II
TTBB with piano

This composition was written for – and premiered by – the Kent State University Men’s Chorus in 2017. The dynamic of musical ensembles often highlights the positive notion of people working collectively towards something meaningful. The texts chosen for this composition, simply put, reflect on the unity, faith, and brotherhood of mankind. It is meant to not only exemplify the “we are brothers united in song” pieces often heard from a men’s chorus; but to also capture how wonderful it would if all people would live together in harmony.

Cost: $3.00/score
Voice Practice Tracks: $10.00

Performed by The Kent State University Men’s Chorus, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2017

CHRISTMAS

On Christmas Nighta Christmas Cantata
Arranged by Bryon Black II
SATB with piano; available with orchestra

Seven total arrangements of traditional Christmas carols and hymns, written to be performed for church chorus with piano or orchestra. Below are perusals from 4 of the SATB/piano scores – they may be performed individually as a set.
**Contact Bryon Black II for perusals of the orchestral scores and remaining three cantata arrangements.

Costs:
$3.00/individual choral score
$4.00/orchestral score (per inquiry)
$18.00/Full cantata score
$5.00/Voice Practice Tracks per score
$15.00/Voice Practice Tracks for a group of four scores
$25.00/Voice Practice Tracks for full cantata

#1. On Christmas Night
Features chorus and full orchestra.

Performed by The Harvest Choir, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2017

#2. O Holy Night
Features chorus, winds and piano. Special feature for Piano, which quotes Claude Debussy’s Clair de Lune along with the winds.

Performed by The Harvest Choir, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2017

#3. O Come, O Come Emmanuel
Features chorus, strings and hand drum.

Performed by the Tallmadge Lutheran Church Chancel Choir & Orchestra, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2016

#4. The First Noel**
Features chorus, piano, strings and winds. Special feature for flute. Available upon request only.

#5. O Come All Ye Faithful**
Features chorus and brass. Available upon request only.

#6. Silent Night
Features chorus, Soprano solo and descant, piano, winds and strings.

Performed by the Tallmadge Lutheran Church Chancel Choir & Orchestra, conducted by Bryon Black II, 2016

#7. Joy to the World**
Features chorus and full orchestra. Available upon request only.

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