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Lead On, O King Eternal (brass sextet or brass band)

Lead On, O King Eternal (LANCASHIRE) by Henry T. Smart is also sometimes used with the lyrics "The Day of Resurrection." It's fine with us if you call it that, but sometimes a hymn tune comes together with a set of lyrics and the result is absolutely amazing. We think Lead On, O King Eternal is one of those hymns.

We've put together a march arrangement using a little trumpet motif to bind the stanzas together. The first stanza is a relaxed march with the melody in the euphonium and trumpet licks to answer the phrases.

The second stanza is the straight hymn tune by the low brass.

The third stanza is a full-on march treatment with the melody in the first trumpet and a counterpoint by the first trombone.

This piece need not be limited to brass sextet, but larger brass ensembles will perform it effectively as well.

Scored for two trumpets, euphonium, two trombones, and tuba, the pdf includes a french horn part that easily substitutes for the euphonium.

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Lead on, O King Eternal,
The day of march has come;
Henceforth in fields of conquest
Thy tents shall be our home.
Through days of preparation
Thy grace has made us strong,
And now, O King Eternal,
We lift our battle song.

Lead on, O King Eternal,
'Til sin's fierce war shall cease,
And holiness shall whisper
The sweet amen of peace.
For not with sword's loud clashing,
Nor roll of stirring drums,
With deeds of love and mercy
The heavenly kingdom comes.

Lead on, O King Eternal,
We follow, not with fear,
For gladness breaks like morning
Where'er Thy face appears.
Thy cross is lifted o'er us,
We journey in its light;
The crown awaits the conquest,
Lead on, O God of might.

---Ernest W. Shurtleff

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MP3 sound sample: entire piece (synthesizer/midi).




LEAD ON O KING ETERNAL (THE DAY OF RESURRECTION) by Henry T. Smart, arranged by Tom Kirkland for brass sextet consisting of two trumpets, F horn or euphonium, two trombones, and tuba, comes in a pdf file of 670K, with an eight-page score, seven two-page parts, and a license page, twenty-three pages in all. Performance time should be about three minutes.


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Last update: 5 June 2017