Category Archives: Just a Minute

The stories behind some of the more surprising incidents recorded in the Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings.

“With One Accord”: A UK West Gallery Quire at the National Convention, June 12, 1997

Editor’s Note: This issue’s installment of “Just a Minute,” our examination of the story behind an unexpected line in the Minutes of Sacred Harp Singings, features a paragraph from the minutes documenting an unusual event: a performance by a musical … Continue reading

Posted in Just a Minute | Leave a comment

Harmony Primitive Baptist Church Singing, November 19, 1995: “The Traditional Window Opening”

With their standardized formatting and regimented lists of leaders and songs, the minutes might give the impression of a greater degree of order than actually reigns at any given singing. Longtime singers will attest that conventions don’t always proceed according … Continue reading

Posted in Just a Minute | Leave a comment

You Are My Sunshine

I was recently reflecting (as many of us have) on my ten-year singing anniversary. The first all-day singing I attended was the William Walker Memorial at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The singing uses two books: The Sacred Harp … Continue reading

Posted in Just a Minute | Leave a comment

The Chattahoochee Convention, August 1, 1880: Memorial for Benjamin Franklin White

Benjamin Franklin White, co-compiler of The Sacred Harp, prolific composer, and the person largely responsible for building the traditions that continue to define Sacred Harp singing, died on December 5, 1879. The following year, the Chattahoochee Musical Convention, at that … Continue reading

Posted in Just a Minute, Read the Old Paths | Leave a comment

Minnesota State Convention, September 28, 2002: “To the Puzzlement and Delight of All,” a “Surprise Wedding”

I was bound and determined after my split-up with a non-singer that my next partner was going to be a singer, so there were a lot of third dates at Sacred Harp singings. Lara liked the first one she went … Continue reading

Posted in Just a Minute | 3 Comments

Mt. Zion Primitive Baptist Church Singing, July 4, 1997: M. B. Forbes Playing the Harmonica

Anyone browsing the 1997 minutes from the singing at Mt. Zion Primitive Baptist Church in Ashland, Alabama might be a bit surprised to read of this lesson: “M. B. Forbes 164, 59 (on his harmonica).” After dinner, M. B. Forbes … Continue reading

Posted in Just a Minute | Leave a comment