The Georgia Tech Guthman Musical Instrument Competition, 2016

guthman poster scaled

On March 3, 2016, the Center for Music Technology program at Georgia Tech (the Georgia Insitute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia), held the finals of its eighth-annual Guthman Musical Instrument Competition, as a public performance. This event is both international and world-renowned. Designers of musical instruments compete for cash prizes and recognition by going through an extensive multi-day interview process with a panel of judges, culminating in the evening concert for the finalists.

This was my first time attending this event, world-famous among those who develop new musical instruments. Several instruments that have appeared in the competition over the years have gone on to become mass-produced, commercial products. On the other hand, many instruments and their creators are in it for something entirely different — they hand-build one instrument for their own use. And this leads to the Guthman competition’s multiple-personality problem.

Is this an event to foster technological innovation, or is it a competition for individual performers to show off their unorthodox skills using impractical instruments that you couldn’t imagine anybody else wanting to play? It’s both. The range of instruments and performers were so wide that I cannot understand how the judges could select winners. Regardless, this dichotomy made for a great evening of avant-garde musical entertainment.

One instrument was entirely acoustic, others acoustic with simple pickups or contact microphones. Other instruments made use of digital sounds and cutting-edge computer software in artificial intelligence, algorithmic composition and the like, in combination with novel implementations of hardware such as motion-capture cameras, wireless controllers, lasers and optical sensors.

The judges for the competition were the great jazz guitarist Pat Metheny, American music journalist Allan Kozinn, and Marcelo Wanderley, professor of music technology at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.

The Ferst Center seats over 1,000; the hall was full of curious Georgia Tech students, who cheered on and warmly encouraged this very motley crew of inventor-musician-madmen, some of whom must have spent their last €0.10 to get here from the four corners of the globe.  Everybody felt entertained and enlightened.

Now on to the amazing instruments and performances, most of which inspired a well-deserved sense of wonderment from the audience.

A general comment: You can find information about each of these instruments online, but even recent photos and videos you see may not reflect the state that the instrument was in at Georgia Tech. I get the impression that each of these inventors was constantly modifying and tweaking their prototypes right up to performance time.

Yaybahar, Görkem Şen, Turkey

Second Place Award
Audience Award: Best Instrument


This imposing instrument, which is entirely acoustic, creates its own deep reverberation, while the performer plays it both as a pair of bass drums and as a fretted, bowed instrument with about the dimensions and range of a Turkish bağlama or saz. The neck of the stringed instrument is coupled through two long, loose springs to the two bass drums which provide both resonating chambers and acoustic spring reverb. Görkem Şen spun out enchanting, haunting, wistful melodies that set the stage for the evening.

The Sound Space, Greg Beller, France

Judges’ Award: Technical Excellence

The Sound Space
The Sound Space

Greg Beller performed as a human beat box. He created percussive and melodic sounds with his voice into a head-mounted microphone, sampling, triggering and modulating the sounds in real time using his body’s gestures in three-dimensional space. This was sensed by a motion-capture camera and triggered by controller buttons on gloves on each hand, with computer software that handles all this behind the scenes. His performance was entertaining and humorous and warmly received.

Claudeatron Mk IV, Claude Woodward, Australia

Claude Woodward is a veteran tinkerer with the soul of a street busker. His enigmatic clear Plexiglas hand-held instrument enables him to perform expressive melodies by manipulating wheels and buttons, controlling parameters in virtual instruments in Apple’s MainStage program for the Macintosh. He was really into the performing shtick, cranking out a medley of show tunes and operatic themes with a wild, wooly vibrato on what might be called an information-age theremin. He explains it all in his demo video above.

Kalichord Strum, Dan Moses Schlessinger, California

An earlier prototype of the Kalichord Strum: This is NOT the instrument in the form that it was being performed at the Guthman competition.
An earlier prototype of the Kalichord Strum: This is not the same instrument in the form that it was presented at the Guthman competition.

Dan Moses Schlessinger is an engineer with the Sennheiser microphone company. The Kalichord is his home-brew array of piezoelectric sensors that can be plucked and strummed by one hand while notes are played on a keyboard with the other hand. The latest prototype is in a wooden box that sits on a table. Behind the scenes is a computer-based physical modeling virtual instrument which creates string sounds, processed through the Max/MSP music programming environment. The Kalichord could enable a keyboardist to mimic the performance of a guitar, but he went beyond that, starting out with New-Age harp and zither sounds and ending with an endearing attempt to crank out a classic 70s Motown riff.

Stimulierte Emissionen Klingen, Leo Bettinelli, Argentina  and Austria

Third Place Award

Stimulierte Emissionen klingen
Stimulierte Emissionen klingen

Leo Bettinelli came from the Andes and crossed the Alps. His instrument (it means “stimulated emission sounds” in English, but that takes us no closer to understanding its function) is a two-meter-square vertical two-dimensional array of laser beams and photo sensors creating a grid of eight beams on a side, which define 80 different sensor points. It is played by a performer waving his hands, feet or any other part of his body inside the grid to trigger sounds and musical phrases. The laser grid is interfaced to an Arduino microcontroller kit and thence to computer-based sound generation. Playing it seems to be as much of a dance as a musical performance.

La Diantenne, Dianne Verdonk, Netherlands


Possibly the simplest instrument in the competition was played by Dianne Verdonk, who is also a cellist and bass player. Her latest prototype is simply a sheet of metal with a contact microphone which Verdonk plays by striking the center with her hand or with a mallet while warping the shape of the sheet. This is a variation on the old “musical saw” or the device used in theater sound effects for centuries to simulate the sound of thunder. Verdonk, however, uses her instrument to skillfully produce slow, sonorous bass lines with deep, sweeping portamento and mysterious overtones. Verdonk was the only performer in the competition to sing while playing, making her own statement about do-it-yourself instrument building for a singer-songwriter. She won no award, but I cast my ballot for her in the category of audience award for best performer.

Electric Mbira, Josh and Wes Keegan, Colorado

The mbira, also known as the African thumb piano or the kalimba, is a folk instrument with a long history. The Keegans, doing business as Colorado Soundscapes, were the only finalists with an instrument which they manufacture and sell, rather than the one-offs or prototypes every other participant was playing. But the format of the live concert presentation let them down. For eight minutes one of the Keegans stood on stage and played his mbira held motionless in his hands, which is not a visually exciting thing to do, and the audience was at a loss to understand why this instrument was significant. But when I looked them up afterwards, I realized that they have re-designed and re-engineered this folk instrument, crafting every component in unique ways to make it more professional and reliable. They have carved a wooden soundboard that acts like tuned speaker cone; they have designed and custom-machined an original mechanism for precision-tuning the tone bars which seems to be innovative. Many craftsmen make mbiras, but the Guthman competition recognized the Keegans for their refinement of the design. I suppose you could call it the Fender Stratocaster of mbiras.

MotionComposer, Andreas Bergsland and Robert Wechsler, Norway

Special Recognition Award

Motion Composer

Robert Wechsler is a dancer from New York who got his start with Merce Cunningham. Andreas Bergsland is a professor at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. As they say, “The MotionComposer is a hardware-software device being developed for persons with disabilities. It allows anyone a clear sense of musical expression through creative gesture and movement.” Wechsler added, “We even work with people who can only move their eyes.” To demonstrate their system, they brought out a “local kid” named Eirc Naindouba. Eirc appears to be about twelve years old and lives with a condition that I am guessing is cerebral palsy. Eirc performed from his wheelchair. I gather that he and his family are immigrants from an African nation who live in Atlanta. Details are scant, but from what I can gather, the MotionComposer operates using motion capture from a single camera box, with three-dimensional range, without the need for any physical sensors attached to the performer. The performer’s gestures trigger what I gather to be a computer-based real-time algorithmic composition system with pre-determined musical phrases mapped to different kinds of gestures that the performer can trigger. It also seems to take its tempo and rhythmic phrasing from cues in the performer’s gestures. I think MotionComposer was truly inspiring and empowering; it was given special recognition by the judges.

Golf club sitar/tabla and associated hybrid instruments, Ken Butler, New York

First Place Award
People’s Choice “Most Unusual”
People’s Choice “Best Performance”

Ken Butler and one of the many instruments he entered under the title "Golf Club Sitar/Tabla"
Ken Butler and one of the many instruments he entered under the title “Golf Club Sitar/Tabla”

Ken Butler closed the show and blew everybody away. I was amazed but also baffled by every minute of his performance, which largely defies description. He was certainly the most interesting performer, to the point that his instruments seemed to be an incidental detail compared to his musicianship. He swept the awards. His performance was howlingly funny and, well, baffling. What he did was to rapidly work through short performances on a series of instruments which he crudely home-made from found items, literally junk with strings and contact microphones attached, in the finest American tradition of the gut-bucket bass or the homemade slide guitar. He played astonishing melodies and percussion interludes, running everything through a Fender vacuum-tube guitar amplifier and grungy guitar pedals for that essential lo-fi vibe. This culminated in a percussion solo played on an ordinary toothbrush with a contact microphone scrubbed across his teeth, and then clamping down on the contact microphone inside his mouth and drumming out a solo with his fingers on his balding head. Forget all the computer software and the motion capture technology. Country-rocker Mack Davis had a song in the 70s that went, “Poor boy don’t need electronics to make no rock and roll. Poor boy got boogie woogie born right in his soul.” The Guthman judges agreed.

Semi-finalists (not performing in concert)

Contriverb, Ed Potokar, New York — Judges’ Recognition Award
The BladeAxe, Romain Michon, California
Pocket Operators, Teenage Engineering, Sweden
Kinefy, Federico Visi et al, England
The Big-Eared Scrambler, Greg Hendler and Mark Crowley, Georgia Tech
Reflexive Looper, François Pachet et al, France
Exp.Inst.Rain, Balam Soto, Connecticut gloves, Imogen Heap et al, England
The Spiral of Fifths, Ruben Dax, Massachusetts
The SolidNoise Ensemble, Jiffer Harriman et al, Colorado
ShohamMX, Amit Shoman, USA
Acoustic Additive Synth, Krzysztof Cybulski, Poland
ACPAD, Robin Sukroso, India
Instrument 1, Artiphon, unspecified location

Comments and criticisms

There were things about the event that I found frustrating.

My biggest problem is that the judges and the organizers knew all about the competitors and their instruments, but the audience had to scrabble for clues. For instance, what is the most basic thing you would want to know about a performer at an international musical event? Where that person is from. But this information was not made obvious to the audience. The printed program gave short “Entrant Biographies” but each one was free-form and there was no editing for consistency in the information provided. I was interested in the instrument “La Diantenne” played by musician Dianne Verdonk, but neither the program nor anything said on stage revealed what I was only able to infer by listening to her accent as she spoke briefly in English: she is from the Netherlands.

The most annoying thing about the event, for me, was the moderation by John Biggs, New York-based journalist for TechCrunch, who approached the entire event as a stand-up comedian who made endless little jokes but couldn’t be consistent in imparting useful information about each instrument and performer.

Each of the nine finalists gave an eight-minute performance on their instrument. Each one was amazing and beautiful, but during each performance I had a nagging what-the-heck-is-that-thing-and-what-am-I-listening-to? feeling. Then the moderator would come out and ask the performer to sum up in one or two sentences what it was we had just heard and how the instrument worked. This was always inadequate. I’m telling you that I had to go home and look up further information about each of these instruments on the Internet the next day in order to adequately understand myself what it was that I saw and heard the night before.

There was no good reason for this. The event organizers could have provided a proper introduction for each performer and instrument, printed in the program or presented verbally and with slides on the numerous projection screens on stage. They could have succinctly explained the principles involved and pointed out the innovations before the performance took place. This would have increased the audience’s appreciation for what they were hearing, and it need not have been tedious.

Setting aside my complaints, this was an exciting evening of the wild and wonderful, showing us the possibilities in the future of musical performance. People travel from across the nation and across the world to participate and to observe. I would recommend that you check out next year’s competition if you are able.

Bach’s Motets in English Translation

Last night I attended a performance of six motets by J. S. Bach, performed by the superlative Georgia Tech Chamber Choir, Jerry Ulrich, director, with Timothy Hsu, Baroque organ and Erin Ellis, Baroque cello.

So once again I’m revisiting a series I’ve done here that’s been quite popular; I’m providing my own translations of the texts, in this case from Bach’s German into modern English. I should restate my purpose:

My translations are intended only for English-speaking singers who are rehearsing and studying these pieces for performance in the original German.

My translationsare not for singing the piece in English. They are also not translations for printing in a concert program to be read by an audience during a performance.

What they are is more of a word-by-word translation to help singers who do not speak German to study the lyrics they are singing, and to find the emphasis of specific words within each line of melody. Therefore many grammatical structures in my translation will sound strange to a speaker of English, because German word order and modern English word order are very different.

If you are a music listener and you want a smooth-reading, easily-understood translation of the lyrics of these Bach motets, you can find those online in other places. If, however, you are a singer who is rehearsing and studying these pieces for your own performance, you might find my translations very useful.

I have labeled the Bible verses and source material in Bach’s texts. They are either from Martin Luther’s translation of the Bible (circa 1522) and are therefore un-rhymed, or they are rhyming lyrics from hymns; in that case I have identified the lyricists.

I encourage you to look up each of the Bible verses in the translation or version of the Bible to which you are accustomed. When there are Bible verses being used, I have not simply copied-and-pasted text from one particular English translation of the Bible, as many would do; rather, I have attempted a word-for-word translation of the German text that Bach himself set. My approach will necessarily sound awkward, but it will help the singer identify the important words according to the German sentence structure; that’s why I suggest that you look up the verses in your own Bible to get a more coherent understanding of the meaning.

Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied, BWV 225

Sing to the Lord a new song

Hymn texts by Johann Gramann (1487 – 1541). Movement 3 is from “Nun lob, mein Seel, den Herren” (“Now praise, my soul, the Lord”), which is based on Psalm 103.

1. (Psalm 149:1-3)
Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied!
Die Gemeine der Heiligen sollen ihn loben,
Israel freue sich des, der ihn gemacht hat.
Die Kinder Zion sei’n fröhlich über ihrem Könige.
Sie sollen loben seinen Namen im Reihen,
mit Pauken und Harfen sollen sie ihm spielen.
1. (Psalm 149:1-3)
Sing to the Lord a new song!
The congregation of the saints shall him praise,
Israel rejoices itself in him, who has created it.
The children of Zion are joyful over their king.
They should praise his name in dances,
with drums and harps should they play to him.
Gott, nimm dich ferner unser an!
Denn ohne dich ist nichts getan
mit allen unsern Sachen.
D’rum sei du unser Schirm und Licht,
und trügt uns unsre Hoffnung nicht,
so wirst du’s ferner machen.
Wohl dem, der sich nur steif und fest
auf dich und deine Huld verläßt!
God, take you from now on us (to you)!
For without you is nothing to be done with all of our belongings.
Wherefore be you our protection and light,
and if deceives us our hope not,
So will you us happier make.
Happy is one who strictly and tightly
to you and your mercy submits!
Wie sich ein Vat’r erbarmet
Üb’r seine junge Kindlein klein:
So tut der Herr uns Armen,
So wir ihn kindlich fürchten rein.
Er kennt das arme Gemächte,
Gott weiß, wir sind nur Staub.
Gleichwie das Gras vom Rechen,
Ein Blum und fallendes Laub,
Der Wind nur drüber wehet,
So ist es nimmer da:
Also der Mensch vergehet,
Sein End, das ist ihm nah.
As a father has mercy
upon his young children small:
so does the Lord does with us poor ones,
So we respond to him with childlike fear pure,
He knows his poor creations,
God knows, we are but dust.
Just as the grass that is mowed,
a flower and a falling leaf,
the wind only over it blows,
So is it no longer there;
So the person passes away,
His end, it is is near to him.
 4. (Psalm 150:2, 6)
Lobet den Herrn in seinen Taten,
loben ihn in seiner großen Herrlichkeit.
Alles was Odem hat, lobe den Herrn,
4. (Psalm 150:2, 6)
Praise the Lord in his works,
praise him in his great lordship.
Everything that has breath, praise the Lord,

Der Geist hilft unsrer Schwachheit auf, BWV 226

The (Holy) Spirit helps our weakness

Movement 2. Hymn text by Martin Luther (1483-1546)

1. (Romans 8:26-27)
Der Geist hilft unsrer Schwachheit auf.
Denn wir wissen nicht, was wir beten sollen, wie sich’s gebühret;
sondern der Geist selbst vertritt uns aufs beste mit unaussprechlichem Seufzen.
Der aber die Herzen forschet, der weiß, was des Geistes Sinn sei,
denn er vertritt die Heiligen nach dem, das Gott gefället.
1. (Romans 8:26-27)
The Spirit helps our weakness.
For we know not, for what we should pray, what we should pay (in fees);
rather the Spirit itself intercedes for us in the best way with unutterable sighs.
He, however, who his heart examines, he knows, what the Spirit’s intention is,
because it intercedes for the saints according to that by which God is pleased.
Du heilige Brunst, süßer Trost,
Nun hilft uns fröhlich und getrost
In dein’m Dienst beständig bleiben,
Die Trübsal uns nicht abtreiben!
O Herr, durch dein Kraft uns bereit
Und stärk des Fleisches Blödigkeit,
Daß wir hier ritterlich ringen,
Durch Tod und Leben zu dir dringen.
Halleluja, halleluja!
You holy fire, sweet comfort,
Now help us joyfully and confidently
In your service firmly to remain,
Trouble to us is not aborted!
O Lord, through your strength us prepare
And strengthen the flesh’s bashfulness,
So that we here like knights may wrestle,
Through death and life to you can penetrate.
Hallelujah, hallelujah!

Jesu, meine Freude, BWV 227

Jesus, my joy

Hymn text by Johann Franck (1618 – 1677)

Jesu, meine Freude,
meines Herzens Weide,
Jesu, meine Zier!
Ach wie lang, ach lange,
ise dem Herzen bange
und verlangt nach dir!
Gottes Lamm, mein Bräutigam,
außer dir soll mir auf Erden
nichts sonst Liebers werden.
Jesus, my joy,
my heart’s pasture,
Jesus, my treasure!
Ah how long, ah long,
has my heart feared
and longed for you!
God’s lamb, my bridegroom,
besides You should I (hold) on earth
nothing dearer.
2. (Romans 8:1)
Es ist nun nichts Verdammliches an denen,
die in Christo Jesu sind,
die nicht nach dem Fleische wandeln, sondern nach dem Geist.
2. (Romans 8:1)
There is now nothing damnable in those,
who in Christ Jesus are,
who do not after the flesh walk,
but rather after the Spirit.
Unter deinen Schirmen
Bin ich für den Stürmen
Aller Feinde frei.
Laß den Satan wittern,
Laß den Feind erbittern,
Mir steht Jesus bei.
Ob es itzt gleich kracht und blitzt,
Ob gleich Sünd und Hölle schrecken,
Jesus will mich decken.
Under your protection
Am I from the storms
And all enemies free.
Let Satan rage,
Let the Enemy fume,
By me stands Jesus.
Whether it now crashes and flashes,
whether now sin and hell terrify,
Jesus will me protect.
 4. (Romans 8:2)
Denn das Gesetz des Geistes, der da lebendig machet in Christo Jesu,
hat mich frei gemacht von dem Gesetz der Sünde und des Todes.
4. (Romans 8:2)
For the law of the spirit, which alive makes in Christ Jesus,
has me free made from the law of sin and death.
Trotz dem alten Drachen,
trotz des Todes Rachen,
trotz der Furcht dazu!
Tobe, Welt, und springe;
ich steh hier und singe
in gar sichrer Ruh!
Gottes Macht hält mich in acht;
Erd und Abgrund muß verstummen,
ob sie noch so brummen.
Defy the old dragon,
defy death’s vengeance,
defy fear as well!
Rage, world, and attack;
I stand here and sing
in altogether secure peace!
God’s power holds me in watchfulness;
Earth and abyss must fall silent,
However much they might rumble.
 6. (Romans 8:9)
Ihr aber seid nicht fleischlich, sondern geistlich,
so anders Gottes Geist in euch wohnet.
Wer aber Christi Geist nicht hat, der ist nicht sein.
6. (Romans 8:9)
You, however, are not of the flesh, but rather of the Spirit,
since otherwise God’s Spirit in you lives.
Anyone, however, who  Christ’s Spirit does not have, is not his.
Weg mit allen Schätzen,
du bist mein Ergötzen,
Jesu, meine Lust!
Weg, ihr eitlen Ehren,
ich mag euch nicht hören,
bleibt mir unbewußt!
Elend, Not, Kreuz, Schmach und Tod
soll mich, ob ich viel muß leiden,
nicht von Jesu scheiden.
Away with all treasures,
you are my delight,
Jesus, my desire!
Away, you vain honors,
I want to you not to listen,
remain to me unknown!
Poverty, misery, torture, shame and death
shall to me, although I must suffer much,
not from Jesus part me part me.
 8. (Romans 8:10)
So aber Christus in euch ist,
so ist der Leib zwar tot um der Sünde willen;
der Geist aber ist das Leben um der Gerechtigkeit willen.
8. (Romans 8:10)
So however if Christ is in you,
so is the body indeed dead indeed for sin’s sake;
the Spirit, however, is life for righteousness’s sake.
Gute Nacht, o Wesen,
Das die Welt erlesen!
Mir gefällst du nicht.
Gute Nacht, ihr Sünden,
Bleibet weit dahinten,
Kommt nicht mehr ans Licht!
Gute Nacht, du Stolz und Pracht!
Dir sei ganz, du Lasterleben,
Gute Nacht gegeben!
Good night, nature,
that the world cherishes!
You please me not.
Good night, you sins,
Stay far away,
Come no more to light!
Good night, you pride and glory!
To you utterly, you corrupt life,
Good night be given!
 10. (Romans 8:11)
So nun der Geist des, der Jesum von den Toten auferwecket hat,
in euch wohnet, so wird auch derselbige,
der Christum von den Toten auferwecket hat,
eure sterblichen Leiber lebendig machen,
um des willen, daß sein Geist in euch wohnet.
10. (Romans 8:11)
Therefore now the Spirit of him, who Jesus from the dead raised,
in you dwells, so will therefore that same one,
Who Christ from the dead has raised,
Your dead bodies alive will make,
for the sake, that his Spirit in you will dwell.
Weicht, ihr Trauergeister,
denn mein Freudenmeister,
Jesus, tritt herein.
Denen, die Gott lieben,
muß auch ihr Betrüben
lauter Zucker sein.
Duld’ ich schon hier Spott und Hohn,
dennoch bleibst du auch im Leide,
Jesu, meine Freude.
Hence, you Spirits of sadness,
because my Master of joy,
Jesus, comes here.
Those, that God love,
must even their troubles
(seem to be even moreso) pure sugar.
Endure I already here mockery and shame,
nevertheless you stay with me even in suffering,
Jesus, my joy.

Fürchte dich nicht, ich bin bei dir, BWV 228

Fear not, I am with you

Hymn text in Movement 3. by Paul Gerhardt (1607 – 1676)

1. (Isaiah 41:10)
Fürchte dich nicht, ich bin bei dir; weiche nicht, denn ich bin dein Gott; ich stärke dich, ich helfe dir auch,
ich erhalte dich durch die rechte Hand meiner Gerechtigkeit.
1. (Isaiah 41:10)
Fear you not, I am with you;
recoil not, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you also,
I sustain you through the right hand of my righteousness.
2. (Isaiah 43:1)
Fürchte dich nicht, denn ich habe dich erlöset; ich habe dich bei deinem Namen gerufen, du bist mein.
2. (Isaiah 43:1)
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name, you are mine.
Herr, mein Hirt, Brunn aller Freuden!
Du bist mein,
ich bin dein,
niemand kann uns scheiden.
Ich bin dein, weil du dein Leben
und dein Blut,
mir zu gut,
in den Tod gegeben.
Du bist mein, weil ich dich fasse
und dich nicht, o mein Licht,
aus dem Herzen lasse!
Laß mich, laß mich hingelangen,
wo du mich, und ich dich
lieblich werd umfangen.

Fürchte dich nicht, du bist mein.

Lord, my Shepherd, fount of all joy!
You are mine,
I am yours,
no one can us part.
I am yours, since you your life
and your blood,
for my sake,
in your death have you given.
You are mine, since I hold to you
and you (I do) not, O my light,
from my heart let go!
Let me, let me attain unto,
where You to me, and I to you
lovingly will embrace.

Fear not, you are mine.

Komm, Jesu, komm! BWV 229

Come, Jesus, come!

Hymn text by Paul Thymich (1656 – 1694)

Komm, Jesu, komm, mein Leib ist müde,
die Kraft verschwindt je mehr und mehr,
ich sehne mich nach deinem Frieden;
der saure Weg wird mir zu schwer!
Komm, komm, ich will mich dir ergeben,
du bist der rechte Weg,
die Wahrheit und das Leben.
Come, Jesus, come, my body is tired,
the strength wanes more and more,
I long for your peace;
the sour path becomes for me too hard!
Come, come, I will to you myself yield,
You are the true path,
the truth and the life.
D’rum schließ ich mich in deine Hände
und sage, Welt, zu guter Nacht!
Eilt gleich mein Lebenslauf zu Ende,
ist doch der Geist wohl angebracht.
Er soll bei seinem Schöpfer schweben,
weil Jesus ist und bleibt
der wahre Weg zum Leben.
Therefore enclose I myself in your hands
and say, World, to you good night!
Hurries my life’s run to its end,
is certainly my spirit fully prepared.
It shall with its Creator soar,
because Jesus is and remains
the true path to life.

Lobet den Herrn, alle Heiden, BWV 230

Praise the Lord, all heathens

(Psalm 117)
Lobet den Herrn, alle Heiden,
und preiset ihn, alle Völker!
Denn seine Gnade und Wahrheit
waltet über uns in Ewigkeit.
(Psalm 117)
Praise the Lord, all heathen (nations),
and extol him, all peoples!
For his grace and truth
rule over us for eternity.


Please write to me and let me know if you have found this translation helpful. Let me know where in the world you live, and tell me about the choir that you sing with or the school where you study.