My Arrangement of How Great Thou Art

.How Great Duet

My arrangement of “How Great Thou Art is now available. Yes!!! Find it at:

Available for:

. Here’s a video:

The Story: I’ve arranged several hymns for people before, but this one has a cool story. With my fiction writing obsession, my music has taken a back seat lately. Which is fine. I love music and writing, and I’ll do whichever I’m in the mood for, because if I force either one, it never turns out great.

Cool thing #1

But about a month ago, I was in a musical mood and sat down at my piano and started goofing around. Before I knew it, I was plunking out a piano arrangement of “How Great Thou Art.” Not sure why that hymn since it’s never been on my top-ten favorites list, but okay. I grabbed my manuscript paper and scribbled (literally) all over it. My musical handwriting is worse than my regular handwriting, which is scary enough. But the music was coming faster than I could write. I haven’t written a song that fast in a LONG time.

Cool thing #2 came a week later

A man in my ward was asked to sing a solo at the Detroit Mission Home Fireside. He approached me to see if I would accompany him. I said yes and asked him what he wanted to sing. He said, “I’d love to sing How Great Thou Art, but I don’t want to sing it straight out of the hymnbook. I want to do some kind of an arrangement. Do you know of any?” Now, at times like this my personality begs me to clam up and say nothing. I HATE my personality. But I went for bold, jumped uncharacteristically out of my comfort zone and said, “Actually . . . I’m working on an arrangement right now. It’s mostly finished but it’s for a piano solo. But, it wouldn’t be too hard to switch it over to a vocal solo. What do you think?” He was nice enough to trust me, so we gave it a try. Not sure how he got through that first rehearsal. I was scribbling and scratching things out as he sang. But he put up with me. He’s an amazing musician. He even tolerated the funky timing I added.

Cool thing #3

Lo and behold, the song went great at the fireside — Thank you, Scott! I even had someone I don’t know ask for the arrangement afterward, which is the nicest compliment anyone can give. When I told her it was my arrangement she wasn’t completely shocked — another compliment. However, I only had one copy, and it had more scribbles on it. I handed it over anyway, hoping I would remember my last minutes tweaks. I rushed home, made the changes, and had the thought — I should publish it. Might as well, right? It was finished and a whole two people liked it. I’ve had less motivation before. :) Good enough. But then came the hard part. Most hymns are so old the copyrights have expired. You can arrange to your heart’s desire and not worry about anything. “How Great Thou Art” is not one of them. In fact, you can’t even copy it out of the hymnbook without permission. That’s okay. I’ve been working with publishers and copyrights for eight years now, so I decided to take the plunge.

Cool thing #4

I did some research, wrote about 10 emails, and now it’s approved for publication. Yay! So that’s the long story for my short announcement. My vocal solo arrangement of “How Great Thou Art” is available for purchase, as well as a vocal duet and piano solo. Find them here:

Funny how life works. One more cool thing since I’m already blabbering on. I’m being featured on Musicaneo’s homepage right now. Kind of fun. Okay, really fun. So check out the new song and let me know what you think. And as always, have a great day!. . PS: I always set out to write short posts. I tell myself, “Oh, today is going to be a short one.” 720 words later, I’m sorry. The author in me needs to learn to shut up.

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Author: Rebecca Belliston @rlbelliston

Hopeless romantic and author of CITIZENS OF LOGAN POND, SADIE and AUGUSTINA. Music nerd and composer of RELIGIOUS and CLASSICAL-STYLE music. I live in Michigan with my husband and five kids.

14 thoughts on “My Arrangement of How Great Thou Art”

  1. Do you have an audio file so I can hear what this arrangement sounds like before I buy the sheet music so I know if this is what I want to use?

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  2. Rebecca, I can not even begin to describe to you how beautiful this arrangement is. I was baptized on March 17th 2012 at the age of 25 and this is one of my favorite hymns, in fact I would like to sing this song in 2 weeks at our sacrament meeting. I would be honored to sing your arrangement as my fiancé will be playing the piano. please message me with any type of payment is needed at Christopher.j.dobson@live.com. thank you for sharing your gift with us. :-)

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  3. Hello! I am needing your arrangement, but pre-recorded on a file. Is there any way to purchase this along with the sheet music? I do not have an accompanist and need to use a CD or media file. Beautiful arrangement. Thank you!

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    1. How soon do you need it? I have a recording of the accompaniment, but it is fairly poor quality. I might be able to make one that could work, depending on when you need it. Which version are you hoping to use? High, Medium, Low?

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  4. This is wonderful! I actually have also recently written an arrangement of this hymn and wondered about the copyright situation. Could you possibly guide me in the right direction on who to contact?

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  5. This is such a beautiful arrangement! I know you did it years ago, but the music touched many hearts today. Thank you for sharing your talent with us and lifting others.

    Liked by 1 person

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