Funeral Music

Thanks to many who prayed for the service for my friends’ son.

Here’s a list of prelude and postlude music I played. I tried to choose a mix between hymns, Celtic-sounding “mournful” music, and popular songs, keeping in mind that the group wasn’t a highbrow audience.  For All the Saints and Softly and Tenderly wouldn’t have been good choices this time.  I had intended to play What A Friend We Have in Jesus and regret forgetting it.

Untitled Hymn (Come to Jesus) by Chris Rice
Homeward Bound by Marta Keen as heard played by William Joseph
Ashokan Farewell by Jay Ungar
Come, Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy
Grace by David Foster and William Joseph
I Will Remember You by Sarah McLachlan
Give Me Jesus, arranged by Fernando Ortega
There Is a Fountain
I Am a Poor Wayfaring Stranger
People Get Ready, Eva Cassidy rendition

Eva Cassidy is a new find – oh, mama, that girl could sing!! Sad story: she died (1996) at age 33 of cancer, an unknown singer.  One of her recordings got some air time in the UK and they went wacko-wild over her.  That popularity bounced back to the states.  Listen!!  If you have three and 1/2 minutes this is well worth your time. Have any of you heard her?

The samples (# 7 and #11) of William Joseph are also excellent.   I would like to thank my sister and sister-in-law for their incredible help with song selections.  For you musicians out there, musicnotes.com was a lifesaver.  I could buy the music, download and print it in five minutes.  They also allow you to print the first page for free so you get an idea on the arrangement.  Bookmark that page!

Do you have a song you would really like at your funeral or memorial service?

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9 thoughts on “Funeral Music

  1. “Another Time, Another Place,” sung by Sandy Patti and Wayne Watson – “…..oh, my heart’s been burnin’, my soul keeps yearnin’, sometimes I can’t hardly wait for that sweet, sweet someday, when I’ll be swept away, to another time and another place….”

  2. Oh, Carol, I’ve just been listening to Eva Cassidy – went from your link, to another where she sings “Over the Rainbow,” that just made me cry. What an unbelievably beautiful, pure voice! Thank you for sharing her with me.

  3. I would have loved to hear you play these selections, Carol.For years I’ve loved “O the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus” and have always thought that it would be on my funeral list. And of course, “A Mighty Fortress is Our God.” I’m a very traditional gal, but when I first heard When It’s All Been Said and Done, I declared to those around me that it must be sung at my funeral. I even purchased the music and an accompaniment CD so that no one can say they couldn’t find the music! The words are so important to me. I knew I had blogged about this song, so I went to pull it up to link and found that exactly one year ago today was when I did. Imagine that! I posted the words to the song here in this post.

  4. Carol, I guess I never played my Eva Cassidy CD for you. It’s one of my all-time favorites! She was featured a the Northwest Public Radio show, “Inland Folk,” years ago, and I thought she had one of the most beautiful voices I’d ever heard. “Over the Rainbow” is my favorite, too! Lisa V

  5. We visited a church whose pastor had parishoners fill out a form to have in the office if they should die.  I thought it a good idea and often read the hymnal for just the perfect hymn for that day… .  Someday I will make the list.
    These times of loss are such difficult times. May the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, be ministering to the family and friends of this young man.

  6. I have tried to think about planning my funeral service, but to no avail……………
    Having said that, I do like the  spiritual *Swing Low, Sweet Chariot*  for perhaps one of the songs
    Thanks for the introduction to Eva Cassidy.
    Dana in GA

  7. Thank you, all, for your kind words. Carrie, Great is Thy Faithfulness, was my mom’s favorite song and such a treasure to me.Janie, *this time* I printed out two copies of the lyrics. One is going in my funeral music notebook (yes, I started one this weekend) and the other in my journal. “You’re my life when life is gone” is food for many a devotional feast.Lisa, I guess you never did, boo-hoo. Eva Cassidy is in-cred-i-ble. Curt came home and I took him by the hand straight to the computer where she was queued up and had him listen. He was blown away. Brenda, I think that is a good idea. It helps to know. I need to do the same thing. Curt keeps reminding me that one can’t expect the attendees to sit through three hours of music. Dana, the spirituals are great for funeral music. I contemplated SW,SC but didn’t think it exactly fit.

  8. We LOVE Eva Cassidy; we were introduced to her by the Branns when Jenny started singing with them.  I assumed you knew about her…sorry! 
    Funny you should mention the songs for funerals.  I’ve been rethinking my plans for my funeral; not just the music part, but also what scriptures.  I got side tracked by what to put on my headstone!  (Not the words even, but the pictures!)  At the risk of sounding morbid, when I was doing research for what my mom wanted for her funeral, while she was alive, I ran across a group of retired Christian men in Florida who were making their own coffins.  What was impressive to me was what Scriptures they had personally engraved on their coffins.  In light of the celebration of the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus, it is good to think about our own deaths and resurrection.  He is Risen!  He is Risen Indeed! 

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