1. An article by Paul Harvey titled "Wondrous Love: The living tradition of Sacred Harp singing". Harvey writes about sacred harp singing and discusses two books that deal with it: Kiri Miller’s Traveling Home, an academic study, and Kathryn Easterburn’s A Sacred Feast: Reflections on Sacred Harp Singing and Dinner on the Ground, a collection of essays, reflections, and even recipes.
2.The documentary, “Awake My Soul.” (The website has a clip of the singing as well as a trailer. You can buy the soundtrack and the DVD on the site as well.) Here's the description:
"Awake, My Soul is a feature documentary that explores the history, music, and traditions of Sacred Harp singing, the oldest surviving American music. While often linked only to its history, (e.g. the songs were used in the recent historical films "Cold Mountain" and "Gangs of New York") this haunting music has survived over 200 years tucked away from sight in the rural deep south, where in old wooden country churches, devoted singers break open The Sacred Harp, a shape note hymnal first published in Georgia in 1844. These singers have inherited The Sacred Harp and its traditions from those who came before them and preserved these fierce yet beautiful songs, many of which are much older than the hymnal itself. And so they, like the early singers, begin each song by intoning syllables which are represented by each shaped note in their hymnal: fa, sol, la, and mi. To the casual observer, it is some foreign, unintelligible language, but to these Sacred Harp singers, it is the key that unlocks mysteries: songs of both beauty and sorrow, of life and of death, songs that cause feet to stomp and tears to flow, often at the same time. They are ancient sounds, which are at times disorienting to the modern ear, and yet they are sung with such passion and force that it becomes obvious that these songs are very much alive. Awake My Soul is a film that captures both the history and the vitality of a music that is utterly unlike any music most viewers are likely to have heard.”
Enjoy! And if you're a fan of sacred harp, leave a comment and let me know.