The hymns in this collection are drawn from traditional European melodies, American tunes, and African-American Spirituals. They represent some of the most recognised tunes in Western music. Many of these hymns have been played during important events in history, from funerals of American presidents to royal weddings and coronations. Some have even become the subject of legend: "Nearer My God to Thee," was allegedly the last hymn that the band played on the RMS Titanic before it sank.
The four-mallet arrangements are all playable on a 4 and 1/3 octave "low A" marimba,
The hymn tunes and two-mallet arrangements can be played on marimba, vibraphone, or a standard set of orchestra bells.