The Music of The Titanic

Alexander's Ragtime Band

The toughest thing about success is that you've got to keep on being a success.
Irving Berlin, Composer of Alexander's Ragtime Band, 1888-1989


It was a time of change, but when is it not?  The music of the Victorian era was slipping into history and people were finding new melodies in ragtime.

There is scant documentation written about what music was played on the ship.  The Countess of Rothes always remembered the orchestra playing "Tales of Hoffman" the evening they struck the berg and got cold chills when she heard it. Wireless Operator Harold Bride testified that the last song he heard before the ship sank was "Songe D'Autome", a popular waltz but he was the only one to mention it.  Others swore that the band played "Nearer My God to Thee" but there are two musical pieces that this hymm is set to, one American and one British.  Which one was used?    No one is certain.  Ragtime?  The only song that was mentioned was Alexander's Ragtime Band, a very popular mumber at the time.  Of course during the voyage the orchestra had played light music in the public rooms as their job demanded.   Waltzs were always a big hit and one is represented here.

So ladies and gentlemen, for your listening pleasure we are pleased to present the Music of the Titanic!


Nearer, my God, to Thee

Eternal Father, Strong to Save
(the sailor's hymm)

Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer to Thee!
E'en tho' it be a cross
That raiseth me;
Still all my song shall be,
Nearer, my God, to Thee,
Nearer, my God, to Thee, Nearer to Thee!

There let the way appear,
Steps unto heav'n;
All that Thou sendest me,
In mercy giv'n;
Angels to beckon me
Nearer, my God, to Thee!
Nearer, my God, to Thee, Nearer to Thee!

Then with my waking tho'ts
Bright with Thy praise,
Out of my stony griefs
Bethel I'll raise;
So by my woes to be
Nearer, my God, to Thee!
Nearer, my God, to Thee, Nearer to Thee!



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Eternal Father, strong to save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bids the mighty ocean deep
Its own appointed limits keep:
O hear us when we cry to Thee
For those in peril on the sea.

O Savior, whose almighty word
The winds and waves submissive heard,
Who walkesdst on the foaming deep,
And calm amid its rage didst sleep:
O hear us when we cry to thee
For those in peril on the sea.

O Christ, the Lord of hill and plain,
O'er which our traffic runs amain
By mountain pass or valley low:
Wherever, Lord, Thy brethern go,
Protect them by Thy guarding hand
From every peril on the land.

O Holy Spirit, who didst brood
Upon the chaos dark and rude,
And bid its angry tumult cease,
And give, for wild confusion, peace:
O hear us when we cry to thee
For those in peril on the sea.

O Spirit, whom the Father sent
To spread abroad the firmament:
O Wind of heaven, by Thy might
Save all who dare the eagle's flight,
And keep them by Thy watchful care
From every peril in the air.

O Trinity of love and power,
Our brethren shield in danger's hour;
From rock and tempest, fire and foe,
Protect them wheresoe'er they go;
Thus evermore shall rise to Thee
Glad praise from air and land and sea.


Merry Widow Waltz




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