No.35 Liebster Jesu, wir sind hier

Johann Sebastian Bach

No.35 Liebster Jesu, wir sind hier


About this work

While Bach served as organist in Weimar for the Duke of Sachsen-Weimar (1708 - 1717), he turned out an important collection of 45 chorale preludes that comprise his Orgelbüchlein (Little Organ Book). The set contains eight sections, the first seven featuring 33 works whose chorale themes are associated with Lutheran feast days, and the latter section, which the composer called "Glaubenslieder" (Songs of Faith), containing 12 preludes whose chorale tunes relate to various religious subjects. This one, Liebster Jesu, wir sind hier (Dearest Jesus, we are here), is the second work in the "Glaubenslieder". Its chorale theme is gentle and consoling, and Bach's use of it in a canon treatment in the upper registers is imaginative and deftly fashioned. The tempo is slow and the mood a curious mixture of joy and sobriety, giving the work a multi-dimensional expressive manner, offering yet again another example of the composer's ability to convey seemingly incompatible moods or musical elements in quite compatible ways. The work has a soothing, quite celestial manner throughout its minute and a half duration and its music will have wide appeal to Baroque and organ music enthusiasts.