Pilgrim Psalms: Let Us Go! (Psalm 122)

Psalm 122 is full of exuberance at the mere thought of going to church. That’s hard to imagine in our day and age (at least before COVID-19), but the Israelites were in a different context. For them, God was present only in the Temple in Jerusalem. If they were going to meet with God–if they were going to worship–it would be at the Temple. Indeed, that’s what the Pilgrim Psalms are all about: songs for the long journey to Jerusalem to worship. I can imagine that this song would be one of their favorites along the way: it called them to join the journey, it boosted flagging spirits along the way, and it would be a grand anthem upon arriving at their destination.

In keeping with all my Pilgrim Psalms, “Let Us Go!” is very simple and easily learned without music. It is an eight-measure chorus repeated ad-lib with three verses that can be sung by a leader on top of the chorus. Think of it as Hillbilly Taizé.

Let us go; Let us go; Let us go to the house of the Lord!
Let us go; Let us go; Let us go to the house of the Lord!

1. I was glad when they said,
“Let us go to the house of the Lord!”
And now we’re standing before your doors.
Let us go to the house of the Lord! (CHORUS)

2. The city of God
is made of more than stone.
It is founded on justice and love
for all who go to the house of the Lord! (CHORUS)

3. Give us peace,
O Lord, give us peace.
O Lord, give all your children peace, we pray,
when we go to the house of the Lord! (CHORUS)

For those of you who care about such things, all the voices and instruments were recorded with GLS Audio’s ES-57. It’s a $30 mic fashioned after Shure’s industry standard SM57. I quite like it. It has a little more volume than the SM57 and is perhaps a tad too hyped in the mid-range, giving it lots of presence but a slightly unnatural megaphone-like color for recording. But I bought it for miking instruments live and I think it will do a great job of picking up a piano or guitar amp without much room noise. Kudos GLS!

Technical note #2: I recorded this demo without a click track. I just hit record and started singing. That’s why there are some fluctuations in the tempo here and there. So sue me. It’s also why I had to tune my guitar up a quarter step when I decided to add it after all the vocal tracks were done!

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One Response to Pilgrim Psalms: Let Us Go! (Psalm 122)

  1. Karen says:

    Hilbilly Taize – yes! I love it.

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