Recent comments

Excellent work, Captain. I like your take on the Divine Mercy Chaplet. God is upbeat and upchannel. Win with Jesus! I did a couple Divine Mercy songs with a member of TCS a few years ago, so I am onboard.
Keep rockin' and rollin' out these teaching songs "adapted" from popular nationalistic songs that exclude God from the equation.
Absolutely beautiful!  Love the "turns" - those little triplets - those really add a lot to the song!  Hats off to MacDonald for her composition!
A beautiful proclamation. The guitar and voices are nicely layered. Peaceful yet resounding. Thanks for sharing this. 
I like the rhythm of the words in the refrain. Very cool. Good composition. Your performance is a beautiful declaration of gratitude for God's saving graces.
Thank you for your continued sharing of your arrangements of responsorial psalms. They have a gentle folk rock vibe.
Thank you so much, Richard!!! Wishing you and your whole family Peace and Joy for the Holidays!!! With love and respect, Rene and Clarissa
Clarissa has a voice of an angel which is well supported by a very able guitarist. Bravo, my friends. Merry Christmas to you!
Mellow devotion to God. I always get a feeling of calm when I listen to your recordings. Very nice. I have a question about the chord you play at "for" in "for He has worked wonders". I am hearing some dissonance on that word. Since you are singing the note Ab, it seems that the chord C# would work well for this phrase, i.e. C# - Eb - Bb. What chords do you play in this arrangement? I am hearing Eb - F - Bb. If you are using a capo at fret 1, then C - D - A would work fine...
Like my uncle used to say, "You boys are clever!" Nice conjoining of Catholicity with Korean dancing. Keep up the good work.
Good to know that you know the people behind Great Catholic Music streaming radio. I have asked them for advice on starting my own streaming service for Salmos Responsoriales.
I know these folks! They're from where I'm from - Canton, Ohio (USA) area. Their flagship station took over an old daytimer a couple decades ago called the "Big 1060". Good folks. 
Author: Andrzej
A beautiful message, indeed. Thank you for sharing your music with us - looking forward to hearing more of it in the new liturgical year! 
A very nice message. Well spoken against a beautiful backdrop of music. Thank you so much for enriching Top Catholic Songs listeners with your beautiful psalm settings throughout the past year. Blessings.
Well done, good and faithful musicians of the Lord!
Hi Richard. That's the famous Holy Spirit window in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome  
I appreciate your touring of my songs. André van Haren ( andrevanharen.net ) and Paul F. Page ( paulpage.org ) will appreciate knowing that you like their arrangement of Psalm 8: O Lord, Our God, How Wonderful Your Name. I wrote the basic melodies for refrain and verses and contributed my voice. But those two gentlemen made the psalm shine with the piano underlayment. The sheet music is available here: https://insong.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/Psalm-8-O-Lord-Our-God-v7-...
Author: Andrzej
Wow - an amazing richness of music here. Sincere congratulations on these compositions, recordings and performances. As a very quick initial point of appreciation: I really admire the setting of the response on Psalm 8: there is certain unresolved, open quality to it that nourishes the imagination. THe eventual resolution provides a gentle, shimering renewal and lift into the verse. Well done, congratulations on this work!
Author: Andrzej
Beautiful and uplifting arrangement and performance!
Fr. Maximilian: Very nice. As you say, uplifting yet reverent and prayerful. Excellent vocals and instrumentation. Nice variations with those bridges. That Holy Spirit altarpiece! Where is it?
I like this quotation from the Remember When article: A flyer circulated in Woodstock in 1794 argued the importance of regulating “harmony in the religious societies… and to... gain knowledge in the pleasing Art of Psalm singing.” In 1797, it was impressed upon the residents of Dorset that it was their “indispensable duty” to “support the public worship of God” through “singing the praises... with musical harmony and decency,” as “...
A regular thing here in the Twn Cities, too. Performed at the Basilca of St. Mary in downtown Minneapols by SPCO. https://content.thespco.org/events/holiday-concerts-handels-messiah-2223/
Author: Sherri Matthew
Remember When: Hallelujah!: When the Messiah came to Vermont It's popular here! A Vermont Christmas tradition, right up there with the maple syrup and autumn leaf tourists.
Thank you, Sherri. I have never sung in a Handel's Messiah concert. That would be awesome.
Author: Sherri Matthew
Hi Richard, Happy Sunday! Very rich singing voice... we'd love to have you up here in Vermont for one of our Handel's Messiah Sings! :-)
Sadly, the article "Vaughan Williams: Complicated, but Not Quite Conservative" is behind the NY Times paywall. Maybe it will surface as a free read somewhere else. Thanks.
Not sure if you found anything useful in that Steinberg Dorico forum thread I linked above. As you saw, there was mention of Gregorio/LaTeX which you have used in the past. The Dorico team and Dorico users are really working hard to make Dorico the premier engraving program that can handle all sorts of notation challenges. Join the forum and ask questions! As far as export/import, MusicXML format makes it possible to move scores between most music notation programs, including MuseScore. https...
Author: Sherri Matthew
The New York Times has a good read today on Ralph Vaughan Williams: Vaughan Williams: Complicated, but Not Quite Conservative (along with a Spotify playlist) Hope they do one on Fauré sometime...
Author: Sherri Matthew
Hi Richard and Andrzej, Here's a photo of my handwritten arrangement when I recorded Ave Maris Stella: Some years ago there was a nice website that allowed you to design your own pdf staff paper and you could add a Gregorian chant staff above a modern notation system. I made a couple of pdfs, one with three modern staves below and another with two. Now I can't find that site anymore, but I still have the blank pdfs I made and print them out from time to time as I need them. I used to have...
Author: Andrzej
A beautiful piece - congratulations! I will be sure to listen to the rest of the playlist on Youtube. 
OK. Let's talk about music engraving programs. I started out with Finale but never did get the hang of note entry and note repositioning. Simply not intuitive. I then moved over to Avid Sibelius where I gained just enough ability to score simple arrangements: one staff with melody and guitar chords. Then along came Steinberg Dorico. This has proven to be the best music notation program for my simple needs. I collaborate with André van Haren, an orchestral composer and arranger in...
Author: Sherri Matthew
These are nice!  I miss my old Photoshop. I have a sort of Photoshop substitute but the interface is awkward and the layers feature just doesn't cut it. I've developed some work arounds of sorts, but they're time consuming. Thanks for the suggestions! Will definitely wait for a Black Friday sale. At the moment I use two programs together to have some decent typesetting in a final PDF. Music typesetting is a whole 'nother ballgame. I've gone through a slew of software packages trying to...
Have you looked at a FireWire solution for ingesting video into your 2009 iMac? https://www.synchrotech.com/product-1394/analog-dv-converter_01-dac-200-... This DAC 200 model currently not available as new but you may be able to get one used on Ebay. I recommend you look at the very affordable trio of apps from Serif.com – Affinity Photo, Affinity Design and Affinity Publish. Pay once! The three apps are gaining in popularity as suitable replacements for Adobe Illustrator, InDesign and...
Author: Sherri Matthew
Do you have a solution for getting video into an iMac of my vintage? This machine does not appear to have any ports that will allow A/V input. It's a shame, because it's a nice 20" monitor and I've often thought if the hard drive ever fails it would make a great external monitor for another machine. I even experimented with some video adapters for it (tried attaching an external CD/DVD player) and no go.  This was a useful reference page from Apple: https://support.apple.com/en-us/...
My workhorse is of the same vintage as yours. I have an early 2009 Mac Pro (1 TB SSD boot drive, 48 GB of RAM, 2 x 2.26 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon). A few months ago I finally did the dosdude1 upgrade hack to Mojave. I had been camped out at High Sierra for quite a while (also thanks to dosdude1). I also do a lot of work on my 2016 MacBook Pro (internal 500 GB SSD, 16 GB RAM, 2.7 GHz Intel Core i7). As far as perfromance, both machines are about equal! One thing I encountered with my upgrades...
Author: Sherri Matthew
Hi there Richard, Thanks much for digging into this and finding out what was going on. I was inclined to think it was my machine, as it's actually an iMac early 2009 and it has a version of Catalina on it that's a bit non-standard - Catalina Patcher http://dosdude1.com/catalina/ which is designed for machines that can't really support that OS. So I always figure if something weird happens, well it must be a Catalina thing! I didn't install this, the machine came with it when I...
I think I have remedied the issue now (by setting an X-XSS-Protection policy). The iframe preview shows now in Mac Safari when you hit Preview. Sorry about the hassle.
I was just now able to replicate with Safari 14.1.2 the blank iframe preview that you encountered. I was logged in as a regular user. Despite there being a white window where the iframe should be, when one hits Preview or Save the YouTube Music playlist does appear. I next tried the same thing when logged in as admin. The same blank preview appears. I didn't realize that this occurs in Mac Safari. Next, I tested the same iframe preview in Mac Google Chrome (Mojave 10.14.6). The YouTube...
Turning from the technical to the aesthetic, I must comment on the beautiful, lush soundscapes you have created with your harp. Thanks for sharing the details of this instrument.
I am not sure why you are unable to get an iframe to show up. I tested an account that has regular user access (non-admin) and it seems to work fine. I can't imagine that Catalina would be the cause of this. I am at Mojave and Firefox 105.0.3, so I am unable to test your setup.
Drupal is a CMS (content management system) that is totally different than WordPress.org CMS. But both technologies use PHP and a MySQL database. See https://www.drupal.org/ After updating you to WordPress 6.x, your site admin should install these two WordPress plugins to maintain your "Classic" interface experience: Classic Editor – https://wordpress.org/plugins/classic-editor/ Classic Widgets – https://wordpress.org/plugins/classic-widgets/ Half of WordPress users...
Author: Sherri Matthew
Awesome, thanks. It didn't want to show in Preview either. I knew if I clicked Save that was the same as hitting Publish in WordPress. (Is this a varient of WordPress btw?) I have a very old version of WordPress for my domain site. I had my site admin let me try out the updated version of it and I hated it. It had a very strange interface. Not intuitive like the old one. So I thanked him and kept the old version. It still gives me dire warnings about needing to upgrade but he sees no security...
"It gave me a square box that said IFRAME in red". Yes, that is what you should see until you actually Preview or Save the post. Then it will show up. I suggest you use the Preview option to check your post when in doubt. The lack of an embed preview while in edit mode is an unfortunate limitation in this old version of Drupal CMS (v6.x) that I have not been able to solve. This website with its dated technology is somewhat analogous to your analog recording studio. "If it ain...
Author: Sherri Matthew
Hi Richard, Thanks for doing this for me. I tried doing just that, like a million times. All I got was the code when I previewed it. It wouldn't show me the actual player. Also it gave me a square box that said IFRAME in red. Also I experimented with the Source tab and Rich text and Plain text, as well as the link button. Also switched browsers and it still happened in FireFox. Didn't try it in Chrome. I'm using Safari 14.0.1 on Mac OS Catalina 10.15.7.  I don't have any browser...
Sherri: Copy and paste this code into the Source tab of your post (upper left button in formatting toolbar). If you like, I can do this for you. <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/videoseries?list=OLAK5uy_kNF1XVxYhmlcwmEf_hYMc8FqExWPGF968" allowfullscreen></iframe>
Michelle, this is your most popular psalm at TCS to date, with over 1000 reads. Congrats! It's a beautiful setting of Psalm 92. What is the first name of the soloist in this song?
Author: Guillaume
Hi Andrzej! Thank you for your positive feedback! I am currently working on a third one. Have a great day! Guillaume
Author: Sherri Matthew
Hi Andrzej! I am so glad you liked reading about my working methods. I always figured people would find it quite boring, so I try not to get into that in too much detail. I usually hear the  "I don't understand technology!" followed by a giggle, so that's taught me not to discuss my recording work in depth. I just say I'm a harpist and a recording engineer and quickly change the subject. In the meantime, here's a bit more about little Jasmine Kitty!! Here is a photo of her plucking...
Author: Andrzej
so beautiful to see a household so full of joy in music! THank you for sharing these intriguing glimpses into your process, space and equipment. I really enjoyed your point about how the process is different than on a computer, as is the way of thinking about and constructing the music.  THe result sound great, i'll look forward to hearing more. IN the meantime, thank you again for this delightful post! 
Author: Andrzej
I really like how the two songs patiently develop and unfold. I love the waltz meter in the first as well as the interesting  chord changes. I especiallylike the intrumentation and arrangement and energy of the second. Can't wait to hear more!
Author: Andrzej
Congratulations to the composer!
Author: Andrzej
...A beautiful blend of crystal clear acoutic tone and smokey, velvety vocals!
A fitting reflection on Mary on the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. Very nice blend of voices and instruments. Love that violin. A pleasant contemplative folk vibe. Reminiscent of the Mamas and the Papas and Karen Carpenter. Were you having trouble embedding the YouTube iframe?
Author: Sherri Matthew
Hi Richard! Thanks for listening and I'm happy to hear I've inspired you to dust off your old r2r :-)  What make and track width is it? If it's been sitting around for a while you may need to take it in for touch-up servicing... the main drive belt slipped off the capstan motor on one of my Tascam TSR-8s, plus the other machine needed a new (actually used part) reel table. And of course, they both had to be re-calibrated, head alignment, etc., etc. My 16 channel analog mixer console spent...
First of all, welcome to TopCatholicSongs.com. It is awesome that you have an old-school analog recording studio. I have my old reel-to-reel in the attic and am now inspired to bring it down to my basement studio and dust it off. There is a warmth and fullness that analog tape offers over digital recording methods. Your 30-second clip of Salve Regina sounds lush – like an Enya production, as you say. I am looking forward to exploring your music, especially your addtional instrument...
Good melodic contours and chord progressions. Sung well. Played well. Very nice.
Beautiful song. Of course, the lyrics is so wonderful. I am so fortunate to have visited The Sea of Galilee, earlier this year. Thank you for sharing this beauty!!! Blessings, Rene
Author: Guillaume
Hi, Thank you so much for your kind words. I discovered a few days ago the post you mentioned. In Christo. Guillaume
Love it. Really good music and passionate singing. Bravo. Thanks for sharing. Have you seen this post here at TCS? Another Catholic Metal band. topcatholicsongs.com/Via-Crucis-Katholicus-Catholic-Metal
Beautiful, melodious and infused with the love that flows from the Trinity. A very nice blend of vocals and righteous instrumental backing. Awesome that you performed this in concert. Thanks for sharing. 
Author: Nothingless
thank you, I really appreciate!!!
I enjoyed this, loved the blending of the two different languages with one purpose.
Author: Alexander John
Hi guys, thanks for the kind and supportive words and feedback. I was not raised a Catholic growing up and my family weren't religious in any sense. It was seven or eight years ago I started attending church and as strong as my faith is, there are moments where I feel myself losing grip and slipping away from it all. I know it's not the right way because it doesn't feel "right" and there is an emptiness that is cold and hollow when I drift. I cant talk to any blood relatives about any of it but...
Alex: Stay strong in the faith. I found poetry quite therapeutic as well as intellectually and artistically stimulating. Several of my poems turned into songs. You can see the questions I posed and the observations I made here: indwellings.com
Good to hear from you once again. And glad you're strengthening your faith also. It's a long haul journey for sure but God's grace is amazing. Thank you for sharing your work here also! Keep it up - and maybe your writing may help you process some of what you're going through, can be very therapeutic :-)
Hi Richard, I will pass your good word to Decker! It has been a while since I had communbicated wioth you. And great to hear from you. I have been busy with a few good folks wanting to collaborate in songwriting. What keeps you busy these days? Warm regards, Rene
As usual, beautiful music and imagery. Very restful yet proclamatory!
Well played and sung, Rene. I like this one. Give my regards to Decker Brown. Coincidentally, I penned a song called "You're the One" back in 2009. I posted it here at TCS several years ago but just refreshed the story to include my two takes on the song with two differnet collaborators – one classical and the other rock. Search for "You're the One" to find it.
This is graceful and melodious. I was really struck by the entrance of the chorus. Guitar work is uncomplicated yet fully supportive, as usual.
I love it. It brings your song lyrics to life. I hope this video gets a lot of traction. Send it to EWTN. Bravo. Congrats to you and Opus Joyous Studios.
You create a very fine and soothing tapestry of prayer in this psalm setting. Absolutely wonderful. Thank you for sharing.
Dan Vi, my condolences to you and your family at the loss of your dear father. My prayers are for you all.
Author: asiansa09
My daddy went to heaven upon Christ & the Holy Family.  Pray for us.
Your psalm rendition floats over restful waters. God hears your heartfelt praise and thanks for the wondrous gift of creation. Let us respect each other and tend to the garden.
Thank you so much Dan Vi! And your devotion to the Virgin Mary is so inspirational. I am so glad to be able to contribute to this collaboration. I am excited to hear the congregational version of this collab project. Your wonderful comments are so much appreciated. Rene
Author: asiansa09
Hi Richard, You can find more information about the rosary through the link below: https://rosarycenter.org/
When you come visit, we can both play Taylor Guitars, and make good music. Respectfully, Rene
Author: asiansa09
Hi Richard, I am so glad that you have such an inspiration to work on version 2 of the song about promises from Our Lady of Fatima because it is a great resource for the general public to know more about the messages.  Good promotion. 
Thanks for sending your list of Fatima promises. I am glad I asked. I had mistakenly thought the promises below were from Fatime. I see now that the seven below were revealed to St. Bridget: https://www.ncregister.com/blog/our-lady-s-seven-sorrows-seven-promises-... Our Blessed Mother revealed these seven promises to St. Bridget of Sweden in the 14th century. Our Lady said she would bestow seven graces to the those souls honoring her daily by saying seven Hail Marys while meditating on her...
Author: asiansa09
Yes, I do have Mary's 15 promises to those who recite the rosary from America Needs Fatima https://americaneedsfatima.org/ 1.  Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces. 2.  I promise my special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary. 3.  The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies. 4.  It will cause virtue and good works...
Dan Vi: I might try composing another version that uses the idea behind your lyrics. I assume that these are among your original sources for the promises of Mary: Mary's seven promises to the shepherd children of Fatima Mary's 15 promises to those who pray the Rosary (as given to St. Dominic) Do you have other sources I can look at? Here is my objective in doing a second version: I want to create a Marian song that might be suitable for congregational singing, and especially easy...
Author: asiansa09
It is a richness in resources within the messages from our Lady of Fatima to her children.  We just touch the surface of the treasure that we haven't discovered from Mother Mary.  So continue to recite the rosary as her request from her children.
Hi Richard, Thanks for the lovely comments. And much respect and appreciation for the work that you do. You are a very generous person, and truly a blessing to all!!! Thanks for inviting me to collab on this project. I can't wait for your version of this project!!! Rene
Rene, you did a superb job on this – so reverent and flowing. And your guitar is sublime. You are so good at creating magic out of any lyrics, no matter how uneven the line lengths are. You possess a natural ability for creating prosody which is a key requirement for a good song.
Author: asiansa09
As I listen to your voice, and I realize you have warm voices and sweet.  That is so wonderful. I like the record of the song very much. You write the song lyric precisely and according to the Bible as we follow closely with the words of Mother Mary through the rosary.  
Author: asiansa09
You can write my real name, Dan Vi Nguyen, in collaboration with Richard Schletty and Rene Asologuitar.
Good Evening Dan-Vi and Richard, I am done with the song melody. I do have a request to make. I would like to start a new blog to present the song. Thank you!!! At this time, this song is quite buried in this current thread/blog. Presenting the song in a new blog would help in the proper presentation and release of this song. Title: I Am The Mother Of God,Praying For You Lyrics:  Collaborated by asiansa09, Richard Schletty and Rene Asologuitar Melody:  By Rene Asologuitar You...
I Am the Mother of God, Praying for You VERSE 1 I received the good news from / the Angel Gabriel: An Immaculate Conception / through the Spirit. A child born for mankind's / salvation. A child bringing peace to the earth. A child bringing joy to each heart. CHORUS I am // the mother of God, praying for all. Interceding for all through Jesus, my Son, Bringing praise and petitions to the Father of All. You can trust in His love, my children. VERSE 2 Salvation is promised to all who...
Author: Andrzej
I agree - I think this is so beautifully done. The instrumentation, text and phrasing are so effectively arranged. I especially admire the intimacy of the vocals. Please accept my admiration!  
Author: Andrzej
Sounds great and really catchy too! Thank you for sharing this. Andrzej
Congratulations, Fr. Maximilian. Very nice article by Aleteia.org. You are a creative songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, deeply rooted in Christian faith, exploring many genres. Keep on "spreading the blaze" – the fire of the Holy Spirit! Thanks for sharing your songs of faith here at TCS. You are both prodigious and prolific!
Author: asiansa09
I like it very much. I like the title of the song. I wrote the song lyric from the perspective of Mother Mary's conversation with her children. Your song lyric is in the form of Mother Mary's response to her children. That is a very unique approach.  We should continue to follow the unique way of writing this song's lyrics in that direction.
Rene and I are working together to craft this song for Dan-Vi. I came up with some of my own tweaks which I might as well share. Anyone can feel free to jump in and make comments. The real work begins when we start to pour the lyrics into a melody, meter and chord progression. And then there is the question of whether we should attempt to rhyme! I Am the Mother of Jesus, Praying for All VERSE 1 I received the good news from the Angel Gabriel: An Immaculate Conception through the Spirit. A...
As Mother Of God, I’ll Pray For You CHORUS In heaven, I'll pray for you upon my son, Jesus Christ. In heaven, I'll intercede for you upon my son, Jesus Christ. Trust in Him, my child. VERSE My honor to receive good news from Angel Gabriel Immaculate conception with the Spirit A child who will be for mankind's salvation. A child will bring peace to the earth. A child will bring joy to the world. Salvation promised to all believers Confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord...
Thanks Richard!!! Your comments are always so appreciated. Rene
You sing this imperative with passion and artistry. Excellent.
Thanks, John, for sharing your song of hope that flows from Jesus Christ.
Thanks, Dan-Vi, for your reflections on fatherhood. I pray for a restoration and strengthening of the nuclear family as one way to restore love of God and love of neighbor in our troubled world.
Author: asiansa09
Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers out there upon Sorrowful Mother Virgin Mary and Christ. 
A timely song professing the power of selfless love as a curative for abortion. Thank you!
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