The Church Music of William Knapp


Title: Spiral Bound
Sale price$16.00


William Knapp was one of the best known composers of what has come to be known as West Gallery Church Music; music composed for amateur church choirs without keyboard accompaniment in the period 1700-c1850. It is known from manuscript copies that his music was widely circulated throughout the country. Knapp himself was an amateur composer; his day job was that of glover. He also served as Parish Clerk at St. James Church, Poole.


Knapp published three collections of music: A Set of New Psalm-Tunes and Anthems (1738), Anthems for Christmas Day (1744), and New Church Melody (c1751). There are 91 pieces in total, comprising 32 anthems, 41 metrical psalm settings, eleven Christmas carols, five hymns and two canons. Most are in four parts led, as was usual in Knapp’s time, by the tenors. There are also some three part pieces. Twelve pieces are by composers other than Knapp. All Knapp’s music is composed with amateur voices in mind; it presents no great technical challenges, but is tuneful and pleasant to sing.


Dr. Francis Roads, long term enthusiastic proponent of West Gallery music, has been researching and publishing this rewarding repertoire for over 25 years. He is founder and conductor of London Gallery Quire, and is Honorary Vice-President of the West Gallery Music Association. His previous publications include an edition of Henry Playford’s compilation The Divine Companion (London 1701), and The Parish Church Music of John Bishop (1665-1737).


Publisher - New Generation Publishing

Author(s) - Francis Roads

Spiral Bound

Published Date -

ISBN - 9781803691824

Dimensions - 29.7 x 21 x 1.8 cm

Page Count - 256

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