'Hosanna to the Son of David' is performed by the Choir of St George’s Cathedral; the recording took place within the cathedral, located at 38 St George’s Terrace, Perth. Being an a cappella piece, the acoustics of the room become an integral part of the recording and St George’s Cathedral does not disappoint. As the vocal notes decay we hear the magnificent natural reverb of the cathedral itself.
Written by Thomas Weelkes (1576–1623) and traditionally performed in both English and Latin, the source of the lyrics is the Gospels of Matthew 21 and Luke 19 from the New Testament of the Christian Bible. Weelkes was a prolific writer of church music; he was also employed most of his life as a church organist at Chichester Cathedral.
His life was not without controversy; in 1616 he was reported to the Bishop for being ‘a common drunkard and notorious swearer and blasphemer’. Following another indiscretion the Dean dismissed Weelkes for being drunk at the organ and using bad language during divine service. He was however reinstated and remained in the post until his death, although his behaviour did not improve.