|Composer Alfred V. Fedak
Text Psalm 23
Voicing SATB, organ
Topics Comfort and Encouragement, Good Shepherd,
Price $1.95 (U.S.)
Catalog no. 440-828
Difficulty Mod. diff.
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The Lord is my Shepherd
I shall not be in want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures
and leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul
and guides me along right pathways
for his Name's sake.
Though I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death
I shall fear no evil for you are with me,
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
You spread a table before me
in the presence of those who trouble me.
You have anointed my head with oil,
my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and mercy
shall follow me all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord,
shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
"This is a movement reprinted from Fedak’s For Us the Living: A Requiem, reviewed in these pages in January 2008. I’m relieved to find that my appreciation for the piece back then remains intact; it is very nicely set, particularly the central section, 'Though I walk…,' in which a veritable firestorm of accompanimental chromaticism besets the singers, evaporating as quickly as it began, as the text reaches 'You spread a table….'"
--AAM Journal, January 2011
Fedak has provided a lyrical and relaxed setting of one of the most beloved passages in the Bible. Beginning and ending in a serene Db major, the work moves further afield harmonically during the inner verses ("valley of the shadow of death"). This anthem is taken from Fedak's requiem oratorio, For Us the Living.
"Psalm 23, well-known to every church musician, is set in English. The simplicity of the opening lines allows the text to speak clearly. The drama comes in the middle section ('the shadow of death'), reaching its climax at 'your rod and your staff, they comfort me' through intense chromaticism." --Steven Young in The Choral Journal, June/July 2009