Spiritual Duets for Recorder and Piano

Themes and Variations

SKU: C15

The spiritual is a kind of folksong that originated in the African American communities of the United States in the second half of the eighteenth century. Often referred to as “Negro spirituals,” these songs were mostly Christian “spiritual songs.” They were used in church services but some came to be used as work songs, with a call and response form. Drums were not allowed on plantations, so people used handclaps and foot stomps to keep the rhythm of the spiritual.

Some spirituals were used as coded messages during the time of slavery. The spiritual “Follow the Drinking Gourd” gave the directions for slaves who wanted to run away to find the Underground Railroad. After slavery ended, spirituals were performed in concert houses by African Americans for white audiences.

These duets for soprano recorder and piano will give you a collection of easy and medium pieces for your students to play. You can use the easy selections as part of your beginning recorder program. As your students progress, you can give the students who need more challenges the duets to work on in class time or at home. These will make really nice performance pieces that can be played and sung.  Piano accompaniments are included with this resource.

The range for the soprano recorder goes from low C to high D and the book is organized with reproducibles in the front and the full scores in the back.

The CD accompaniment includes a performance, a practice tempo track and an accompaniment track. The Disc includes a PDF file with the MP3s attached to use with SMART Boards, computer/projectors or IWBs. These would make great pieces to teach in Black History Month or anytime. They certainly could be used as part of a study of spirituals and how spirituals, in part, led to the development of Jazz.

Materials Included

In the printed product:
- Printed Book / Enhanced CD
- Digital Book PDF / Audio MP3
- Projectable PDF
In the download edition:
- Digital Book PDF / Audio MP3
- Projectable PDF

In the CD product: 
- Audio MP3
- Projectable PDF

To get your download edition, add this product to your cart. After you go through the checkout process, a download link will appear. You will also receive an email with a link to your download. If you purchased a printed book with CD you will also receive a download version of the book and the CD. This is to ensure that users without disk drives will still be able to use the disk's contents. When you order a print book/CD you will also receive a download edition at no extra charge. You can use the download materials as reference right away, and will receive the print book/CD in a few days.

Songs Include:

  • Who’s That Yonder?
  • Old Ark’s A-Moverin’
  • Standing in the Need of Prayer
  • Wake Up Jacob
  • Do, Lord
  • Nobody Knows the Trouble
  • I Heard the Angels Singing
  • This Train
  • Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho
  • Steal Away
  • One More River
  • Zion’s Children


Book: View Spirituals Book Sample
Audio:  Wake Up Jacob
Audio:  Who’s That Yonder?