Edward Shippen Barnes (September 14, 1887 in Seabright, New Jersey – February 14, 1958, in Idyllwild, California) was an American organist. He was a graduate of Yale University where he studied with Horatio Parker and Harry Jepson. After graduating from Yale, Barnes continued his studies in Paris with Louis Vierne,Vincent D'Indy, and Abel Decaux. He worked as organist at the Church of the Incarnation, New York (1911–1912), Rutgers Presbyterian Church, New York (1913–1924), St. Stephen's Episcopal Church, Philadelphia (1924–1938), and the First Presbyterian Church, Santa Monica (1938–1958).
Although he is largely forgotten as a composer, Barnes was quite successful, composing several signifcant organ symphonies, suites, and shorter works. He is most remembered for his harmonization of the Christmas carol, "Angels, we have heard on high," appearing in most American hymnals.
"Seven Sketches" were published by The Boston Music Co. in 1923. The group of pieces shows considerable variety. Some of the works show the strong influence of Louis Vierne, while others are much more "American" in their outlook. They are dedicated to the famous Canadian organist, Lynnwood Farnam (1885-1930).
The first work in the collection is "Pastorale in C".
Having never heard this, nor any of the pieces in the collection, I was expecting this to be very much like Vierne's "Pastorale" in the 24 Pieces, but it is quite different.
This is one that I would say is much more "American" in style. Actually, it's quite "orchestral" in conception. Barnes marks the tempo as "Allegretto con spirito" and because of this, I took it a bit more briskly than I might otherwise have played.
"Pastorale" is tuneful and quite captivating. It's got some tricky parts to work out smoothly, especially if you are inclined towards registration changes! :-)
The score is attached below, as well as photos of Edwin Shippen Barnes and Lynwood Farnam, as well as some of the churches Barnes served.