A Psalm for All Seasons

The Dutch worship band ‘The Psalm Project’ tell us about their desire to let people hear and sing the Psalms again, and invite us to join them at a series of events throughout Scotland.

Psalm ProjectFor centuries the psalms have been sung.

Songs that take you through the valleys of life, but also psalms that sing of joy.

The Psalm Project has breathed new life into the many well-known melodies of the Genevan Psalter creating contemporary compositions that seek to keep the Psalms alive and relevant for now and for future generations.

Dutch pianist and composer Eelco Vos founded The Psalm Project hoping to make ancient biblical psalms accessible to today’s worshipers. Vos says their main goal is “not to rearrange the complete Genevan psalter but to let people hear and sing the Psalms again.”

Before the Genevan Psalter, congregational singing was practically non-existent. The people listened to trained professionals singing in Latin, which was by no means the language of the common folks. Martin Luther and John Calvin led the way in arranging and translating these Psalms into the simple melodies and common language of the Psalter, allowing people to sing together and to memorise the book of Psalms.

In 2009, The Psalm Project released its first CD Psalms 2nd Edition. A second album ‘Psalms Unplugged’ followed and was produced in cooperation with the Evangelical Broadcasting Company. The end of 2012 saw the release of a third album (in English) "I cry to you" featuring eleven new arrangements of well-loved psalms including Psalm 68, Psalm 75 and Psalm 136.

The Psalm Project consists of: Suzanne van der Velde, Ariën Vink, Miranda de Vlieger, Jay-P Beijersbergen, Luca Genta, Wilkin kite and Eelco Vos. During the concert release of "I Cry for You" the band is welcomed the addition of Arend Jansen (guitar) and Magdalena Karas (violin). The dozen or so members of The Psalm Project—mostly conservatory-trained musicians who live in the Netherlands—grew up singing and memorizing, or, at least, hearing Genevan psalms and through this series of events we have the opportunity to experience their beautifully crafted arrangements and passionate performance of the Genevan Psalter.

There is more information and sheet music available from their website, including the arrangements that you can hear on the albums mentioned above.

The Psalm Project are touring Scotland with their first gig as part of the Psalm for All Season’s day at Greyfriar’s Kirk SPARK event, where they will be joined by John Bell, Dr Martin Tel and the Scottish worship song writing collective ‘Satellite’.

For more info visit the Greyfriar's Kirk website.