Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Emerging: Suites for Advent

The Christian year begins with the First Sunday in Advent, which often falls on Thanksgiving weekend. Advent continues for four Sundays, the amount of time we need to get ready to come close to the mystery of Christmas.

Here's some music for Advent. No, it's not Christmas music ... at least, not until right at the very end! These suites are built around the seven ancient "O" Antiphons, as sung by the choirs of St. Mark's Cathedral in Seattle. Pop and choral music alternate and, hopefully, leave you with a feeling of anticipation and expectation.

Yes, these recordings are under copyright, but the way I have mixed them into suites is original to me. If you hear something you like, please go buy it. I also welcome feedback on Advent music I might use to expand these suites next year!

(Right-click each header to download the suite.)

Advent Suite 1: Eschaton

R.E.M. - It's the End of the World as We Know It (and I Feel Fine)
Crazy World of Arthur Brown - Fire
George Michael - Praying for Time
Mary Poppins - Stay Awake/ Sufjan Stevens - Year of the Sheep
Peter Hallock - Let My Prayer Come Up as the Incense

Advent Suite 2: Wisdom

Godspell - Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord
Sufjan Stevens - O Come, O Come Emmanuel (1)
Peter Hallock - O Sapientia
Sixpence None the Richer - Sister, Mother
Martina McBride - Love's the Only House
Sting - Love Is the Seventh Wave

Advent Suite 3: I Am That I Am

Peter Hallock - O Adonai
Sixpence None the Richer - Anything/The Waiting Room
Hooters - All You Zombies
Sufjan Stevens - O Come, O Come Emmanuel (2)

Advent Suite 4: Come and Save Us

Peter Hallock - O Radix Jesse
Toad the Wet Sprocket - Pray Your Gods
Aimee Mann - Save Me
U2 - I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For
Herbert Howells - A Spotless Rose
Seal - Love's Divine

Advent Suite 5: You Open and No One Shuts

Peter Hallock - O Clavis David
Mr. Mister - Kyrie
Sufjan Stevens - Chicago
Jeff Buckley - Hallelujah

Advent Suite 6: Rising Dawn

Peter Hallock - O Oriens
The Beatles - Here Comes the Sun
Sixpence None the Richer - Waiting on the Sun
The Polyphonic Spree - Light and Day
Sufjan Stevens - O Come, O Come Emmanuel (3)

Advent Suite 7: Prince of Peace

Peter Hallock - O Rex Gentium
J.L. Hosler - You Heavens Above
Simon & Garfunkel - Last Night I Had the Strangest Dream
John Mayer - Waiting on the World to Change
John Denver & Robin - When the River Meets the Sea
Goo Goo Dolls - Better Days

Advent Suite 8: But What If ... ?

Peter Hallock - O Emmanuel
Joan Osborne - One of Us
Isaac Everett - Expectation

Advent Suite 9: Amen

Sting - Gabriel's Message
Conductus - Ave Virgo Virginum
Franz Biebl - Ave Maria
J.S. Bach - Magnificat in D, BWV 243, I: Magnificat
St. Mark's Cathedral Choir - O Come, O Come Emmanuel
Isaac Everett - Incarnation


  1. Do the suites correspond to particular weeks? I already listened to the first one, it sounds great!

  2. Katrina -- Not by week. You could, however, listen to suites 1-9 on December 16-24 ... that would correspond well.

  3. These are so excellent. You've inspired me to make an Advent playlist on my iPod.

  4. Great, Stacy! Tell me what songs you use that I hadn't thought of.