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Descant to the hymn tune WOODLANDS. Free score with harmonized descant, plus bridge and optional SATB verse. AUDIO Hymnal verse - original a cappella - bridge - harmonized descant. Audio remastered 2024. Free score. 

 Tell out my soul is a paraphrase, written in 1961 by Timothy Dudley-Smith, of the Magnificat. This was the first of his now more than 400 published hymns, penned while he was at Cambridge. "I did not think of myself . . . as having in any way the gifts of a hymn-writer when in May 1961 I jotted down a set of verses, beginning 'Tell out, my soul, the greatness of the Lord.' I was reading a review copy of the New English Bible New Testament, in which that line appears exactly as I have put it above; I saw in it the first line of a poem, and speedily wrote the rest." And thus the poet began a notable career.

Tell out my soul was not originally associated with WOODLANDS, which was composed in 1916 by Walter Greatorex, composer, organist, and music director at the venerable Gresham's School (est. 1555). The composition was published three years later in the Public School Hymnbook, paired with a paraphrase of the Sursum corda. Among Greatorex's students were W.H. Auden and Benjamin Britten, and as a youth, Greatorex was a chorister at King's College Cambridge. WOODLANDS was joined with Tell out my soul in the 1969 volume, 100 Hymns for Today.

The text "Tell out my soul" is under copyright and is used here by permission of Hope Publishing Company. Contact Hope Publishing Company to obtain the appropriate license.



Updated: January 2018 (Minor voice leading edits)


Descant verse:

Tell out, my soul, the glories of his word!

Firm is his promise, and his mercy sure.

Tell out, my soul, the greatness of the Lord

to children's children and forevermore!

– Timothy Dudley-Smith, 1985. Copyright © Hope Publishing Company, used by permission. License required from Hope Publishing for performance.  (Link to license request page.)

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