Hymns are sometimes dismissed by choir members, but they remain at the heart of most church music. These hymn books with music will help boost congregational singing.

Ancient and Modern: Hymns and Songs for Refreshing Worship - Although the harmonies remain inferior to New English Hymnal, A&M has added loads of missing hymns and worship songs, and structured the whole seasonally rather than sticking newer stuff at the back. A great improvement. Our sister site also has accompaniment CDs or downloads for every item in the book - see Organ accompaniments.

Full music book

Melody only book

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The New English Hymnal - the hymn book favoured by most UK cathedrals. Good range of traditional hymns, some better harmonies than Ancient and Modern, and a lot of the Victorian detritus swept away thanks to Vaughan Williams' new broom. Usually the musician's choice, but see above for a real challenger.

Full music book

Melody only book

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Hymns Ancient and Modern New Standard - The older version of the other great British hymn book, probably more common than English Hymnal. Combines much of the old faithful with the two more modern books '100 Hymns for Today' and '100 more'.

Full music book

Melody only book

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Songs of Fellowship I - Probably the best of the modern song books, it makes a good companion to NEH or A&M, though serious choirs would not rely on SoF for the traditional hymns as harmonies and sometimes words aren't always spot on. Even so, when combined with volume two it's a great worship song resource.

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Songs of Fellowship 2 - There's a great reason for getting this as well as volume one: in the back of the book is a CD with the words of all the songs in both volumes. This is excellent if you want to find a particular song but can't remember the name - and with an appropriate licence you can use the disk to generate word sheets or overheads for your congregations.

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Songs of Fellowship 3 - Remarkably, 2003 saw yet another volume of Songs of Fellowship arrive with 540 more songs and hymns for today's church.

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Songs of Fellowship 4 - Here we go again with another 510 worship songs - where do they all come from? Without doubt, though, there will be some gems in there. CD with words include.

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Songs of Fellowship 5 - And from 2011 we have yet another 510 worship songs. They must be breeding them somewhere.

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Songs of Fellowship 6 - … and another 510 worship songs from 2016. It's really hard to imagine that there are so many new great songs in 5 years, but some of them will be worth using.

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Common Praise - This, from the same stable as A&M is an attempt to produce a book that will suit the mixed musical content of a typical 21st century all age service. The new A&M (see top) is the best mix of hymns and songs with a hymn bias, where this is a mix that has a higher proportion of worship songs. Bearing in mind this is inevitably going to be a compromise, it works reasonably well.

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Complete Mission Praise - It's not cheap, but bear in mind that this is the Mission Praise equivalent of Songs of Fellowship 1&2 combined - it has over 1,000 hymns and songs and now comes in 2 volumes (both included). Particularly useful for family services and the more evangelical end of the church spectrum, but every organist ought to have a copy.

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BBC Songs of Praise - Reflecting the breadth of musical coverage of the BBC TV Songs of Praise show, this book combines traditional hymns, more modern hymns and worship songs.

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