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Nov 25, 2022

In this episode Jon talks to Dr Martin Clarke, a musicologist at the Open University. We talk about the music in Newton's sermons, West Gallery music and Thomas Hardy. We discuss how the most famous tune associated with Amazing Grace came about so long after the words were written. Finally we talk about the many inspiring and iconic performances of the hymn that lead to it becoming one of the most loved songs of all time.

From July 2022 to July 2023 a small English town called Olney will be at the centre of commemorations marking the 250th anniversary of the writing of 'Amazing Grace' possibly the world's most beloved hymn. The famous words were written by Revd John Newton in the weeks leading up to his New Year's Day service at St Peter & St Paul Church on 1st January 1773. The hymn, in various musical styles, has gone on to inspire countless people and has even become known in America as the nations's 'spiritual anthem.'