The Old Hymns
The following was written in 1891, though it could have been printed in the past decade. I wonder what the contemporary Christian music he wondered about sounded like.
For some years it has been apparent that the rage for novelties in singing, especially in our Sunday-schools has been driving out of use the old, precious, standard hymns. They are not memorized as of old. They are scarcely sung at all. They are not even contained in the undenominational song-books which in many churches have usurped the place of our hymn books.—Basil Manly Jr. (1825-1892) in his preface for Manly's Choice: A New Selection of Approved Hymns for Bapstist Churches, Louisville, Kentucky: Baptist Book Concern, 1891.
We cannot afford to lose these old hymns. They are full of the Gospel; they breathe the deepest emotions of pious hearts in the noblest strains of poetry; they have been tested and approved by successive generations of those that loved the Lord; they are the surviving fittest ones from thousands of inferior productions; they are hallowed by abundant usefulness and tenderest memories. But the young people of to-day are unfamiliar with them, and will seldom hear many of them, if the present tendency goes on unchecked.