02/08/2020 @ 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Edmonds Lutheran Church
23525 84th Ave W
WA 98026
$45 ($25 full-time students)
David Ash

Hymn writing workshop

Calling all poets! The words we sing matter! As the church grows and changes, we need to add to the treasure-house of music by singing new words that will inspire us (and those to come) to pray and work in the vineyard. Hymns, the lyrics of our songbooks, drive what and how we worship. We’ll go over the nuts and bolts of hymn writing, how text and tunes are married, and how we review and use these poems for liturgy. Being a musician can come in handy when writing new text, but it is not necessary! The non-musician will learn enough to be aware of what a tune writer will need. Yes, we’ll write! And maybe you and some friends can start a hymn writing circle of your own! Come sing, write, or rap your way to a new church.


8:30 a.m. – Registration and Check-in
9:00 a.m. – Morning Prayer and Welcome
9:30 a.m. – NUTS & BOLTS: Definition, History, Terms, Feet, Meter, Rhyme
10:30 a.m. – Break
10:45 a.m. – TEXT & TUNE: Tune indexes, Counting, Breathing, Bar Form
11:45 a.m. – Lunch (included in workshop fee)
1:00 p.m. – HOW TO USE: Order of worship, Sundays and Seasons, Outside the Church
2:00 p.m. – Break
2:15 p.m. – OTHER STUFF: Editing, Theology, Copyright, Publishing, Links and Tools
3:15 p.m. – Break
3:30 p.m. – Final Project and Q&A
4:00 p.m. – Evening Prayer
4:30 p.m. – End


ALCM member David Ash received an AB in English literature from Georgetown University and an MA in liturgical music with an emphasis in music composition from Santa Clara University. He was a music and/or liturgy director for six Catholic parishes in the Seattle Archdiocese over a span of 17 years before serving the recently closed Grace Lutheran Church in Bellevue, WA for seven years as accompanist and music director.

Along with his wife Laura, he has composed and produced three albums of liturgical music, a series of music for Advent Lessons and Carols, and many other liturgical songs and psalms. They have songs published with Oregon Catholic Press and music for many dances of Betsey Beckman’s, including her series The Dancing Word. David also wrote the collection Hours of Grace for morning, evening, and night prayer as well as the hymn “We Are a Priestly People” set to music by David Schwoebel and published this year by Fred Bock Publishing Group.

Haiku for Catholics is one of a dozen humorous gift books that David has published. David and Laura also wrote the music for the 2013 musical “Grace on the Margins,” a social justice musical produced by the Intercommunity Peace and Justice Center.