This is a grand and beautiful piece.
“Zion’s Walls” is a revivalist tune with words and music by John G. McCurry (1821 – 1886), a farmer from Georgia who published the song collection, The Social Harp. Copland used this song again in his opera, The Tender Land (1952-1954). Copland’s orchestration alternates between various instruments playing the tune with the singer and descant instrumental accompaniment, sometimes using both in one phrase.
Come fathers and mothers,
Come sisters and brothers,
Come join us in singing the praises of Zion.
O fathers, don’t you feel determined
To meet within the walls of Zion?
We’ll shout and go round
The walls of Zion.