I’ve loved the folk tune WALY WALY for years. I used to sing “The Water Is Wide” with guitar and violin back in my coffeehouse days. I’ve annoyed congregation members by using the tune with the text “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.” (It’s a better pairing, but people don’t seem to care about the facts when it comes to church music.) More recently I arranged the tune for piano and used it with the text “As Moses Raised the Serpent Up.”
But my favorite so far is Susa Palo Cherwein’s text “O Blessed Spring.” The wistfulness of WALY WALY brings out the seasons-of-life theme of Cherwein’s text beautifully. The added strings and Erin De Young’s solo are icing on the cake. If you can listen to it without crying, you need a heart transplant.