The Lockdown Blues and Ticket Please


Zoom choirs have suddenly become the new norm: it's hard now to imagine a choir observing social distancing when in full throttle. Here is an offering by the Mosaic choir which I sing in, and here is God so Loved the World composed by my great grandfather, recorded by my cousin's choir.

The Lockdown Blues came to me in the night. I found myself thinking of the spirituals that the slaves sang on the plantations. I have always admired the way they could sing in such horrible circumstances. Were you there?, Swing Low Sweet Chariot, A Dollar and a Half a Day: they have left us a priceless heritage.

I have tried to keep the piece simple. (In the two places where the music cascades down, each part can get its note from the part before). Please note that the music is permanently in the public domain, free of all copyright and fees.

Download The Lockdown Blues Score here. Here is a score without the piano part which fits onto fewer pages.

Hear a PC sound file here. (This may not play on a phone. The absence of words makes the opening muddy, but it gives the idea.)

If you record it and put it online, please send me the link and a note about who you are, and I will display it here.

Ticket Please


This started out as a piano piece, but then it occurred to me it could be sung to good effect. The story is of a girl in a train on a branch line sending a text. Score here and Sound file here.

Thank you, David Pennant, Woking, UK.

PS This project arose from my website which is an attempt to help people who want to pray at this time and don't know how.

PPS Have you heard the spiritual with new words, Stay home a little bit longer by the Lichfield Gospel Choir? Remarkably apt.

PPSS The score of my piece The Resurrection is also available here