In the Garden Hymn
Charles A. Miles
Eddie Lewis on Trumpet
This week’s Unadorned Trumpet Hymn is In the Garden. This is a hymn that was written in 1913 by Charles A. Miles, who was quoted to say,
“It is as a writer of gospel songs I am proud to be known, for in that way I may be of the most use to my Master, whom I serve willingly although not as efficiently as is my desire.”Charles A. Miles
In the Garden was is his most popular hymn but he wrote hundreds of them. It was printed in over two hundred different hymnals.
Miles’ quote reminds me of the bible verse that says “well done good and faithful servant” from the parable of the talents. Is it safe to say that most, if not all Christians read that parable and think to themselves, “I want to be a ‘good and faithful servant”? I know I do. When my job hear on earth is over, I want to hear those words.
The Hymn’s Lyrics
The lyrics for In the Garden are very picturesque. They describe a gentle morning’s stroll in a beautiful, peaceful garden. There’s dew on the roses. Imagine you are in this garden having an intimate conversation with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! It’s a relaxed, almost matter-of-fact conversation. You are having a conversation with someone with whom you are more familiar than your closest family members.
No wonder this is such a popular hymn!
Here are the full lyrics…
I come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses,
And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.
He speaks, and the sound of His voice
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing.
I’d stay in the garden with Him,In the Garden Hymn by Charles A. Miles
Though the night around me be falling,
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe
His voice to me is calling.
In the Garden Hymn Melody
The melody for In the Garden does a good job of matching the visuals of the hymn’s lyrics. This is partly because the harmonic rhythm is a bit slower than some other hymns. The first chord is two measures long. Then the second chord, a four chord, only lasts one measure before it returns back to the one chard again. One to four to one is a soft movement, which works perfectly for establishing the peaceful sound of the garden described in the hymn.
The refrain is just as beautiful in the same way, for the same reasons. Mostly the harmonic rhythm. And I love the fermatas going into the refrain. They add another element to the overall peace of the hymn. Just beautiful!
Unadorned Trumpet Hymns
I have recorded over two hundred hymns as part of this series of recording that I call Unadorned Trumpet Hymns. The idea behind the hymns is to record the bare melodies on my trumpet with absolutely no embellishments. I don’t even add the “amen” at the end. As a a performer, the challenge is to showcase the melodies of the hymns with the proper mindset.
To be honest, I wasn’t very good at it at first. What I do now is read the lyrics first, and then pray. I don’t want these recordings to be “of this world”. The idea to record them, the process I use to record them, almost everything I do goes contrary to “industry standards”.
We have released three albums of these Unadorned Trumpet Hymns. The In the Garden hymn will probably be on the fourth album I don’t think we will make another album after that.