Tune of the Day: O Little Town of Bethlehem
Phillips Brooks, an Episcopal priest from Boston, was inspired to write this hymn when he was visiting the little town of Bethlehem in 1865. He wrote: “I remember standing in the old church in Bethlehem, close to the spot where Jesus was born, when the whole church was ringing hour after hour with splendid hymns of praise to God, how again and again it seemed as if I could hear voices I knew well, telling each other of the Wonderful Night of the Savior’s birth.”
Three years later he wrote the poem for his church, and his organist, Lewis Henry Redner, added the music. Redner's tune, simply titled “St. Louis”, is the tune used most often for this carol in the United States.
The tune has been covered by many artists, including Elvis Presley, Julie Andrews, Barbra Streisand, Tammy Wynette, Bob Dylan and, more recently, by Britain's Got Talent star Connie Talbot.