CD Release Concert and Fundraiser – January 30, 2022

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Music was recorded at Grace Congregational Church, Rutland, Vermont between September 2020 and May 2021.

Uplifting Guitar Hymns

Ron Pulcer

“Uplifting Guitar Hymns” is the new CD album by guitarist and fingerstyle guitar arranger Ron Pulcer. This album was recorded at Grace Congregational Church in Rutland, VT, between September 2020 and May 2021. The CD includes 18 hymns, Spirituals and religious songs, and features instrumental fingerstyle guitar arrangements by Ron Pulcer. These timeless and well known hymns span from the 13th Century to the 1970s.

CD Release Concert

The CD Release Concert and Fundraiser for Grace Congregational Church will take place on Sunday, January 30, 2022 (time TBD), in the Grace Church Sanctuary. A Free Will Offering at the CD Release Concert will benefit Grace’s Mission and Service Committee. Also, a portion of CD sales after this concert will be shared with Grace’s Mission and Service.

Music: Hymns, Spirituals & Religious Songs

The music was recorded in the upstairs room behind the Sanctuary balcony and directly under the church’s landmark steeple. Ron played guitar sitting between two large stained glass windows; an exterior window to the west, and an interior window to the east (part of back wall of Sanctuary). The recording sessions began at 4pm, so there was some nice natural light coming through the stained glass window, at least until Vermont’s early winter sunset. The room’s high rounded ceiling provided a beautiful resonant sound for solo acoustic guitar.

The audio engineer for this recording was Phil Henry, a local high school music teacher and well known singer-songwriter. The guest musicians on this album are Anna Pulcer (flute), Linda MacFarlane (dulcimer) and Phil Henry (djembe). On several hymns, Ron also added a verse with harmonica melody. The room’s natural sound provided an ethereal quality to the harmonica melodies. Occasional bass and ukulele tracks also appear.

These hymns were recorded during the COVID-19 pandemic, and this approach to music recording was by nature, “socially distanced”; just guitarist and recording engineer within a large room. For Ron, the Tuesday afternoon recording sessions provided a mostly regular schedule, during an uncertain time in world history. As we continue to come through the pandemic (hopefully sooner than later), Ron Pulcer would like to share “Uplifting Guitar Hymns” to an audience both within and outside the church.

Track #15 on the CD is Ron’s fingerstyle guitar arrangement of the song by Michael Joncas, titled “On Eagle’s Wings”. Ron worked out this guitar arrangement the day before he played it at his mother’s funeral Mass in 2000. Given the many souls who have been lost during the pandemic, Ron wanted to include this song on the album.

As a musician and member of Grace Congregational Church, Ron hopes that this instrumental music will be relaxing, uplifting and inspiring to listeners. Ron Pulcer dedicates this album to his parents, Edward and Maria, who gave him the best Christmas present ever (guitar)!