About Sacred Harp

Sacred Harp is a participatory, a cappella, 4-part harmony singing tradition. All are welcome! No performances, rehearsals, commitment, experience or ability required!

The musical style began in New England, survived in the American South, and has spread throughout the United States and around the world.

Sacred Harp uses a system of musical notation, called shape notes, which can aid in sight reading. Singers typically sit in a square, by parts, and everyone is invited to lead from the center of the square.

The majority of the songs are Christian hymns, and for many, Sacred Harp singing is a religious or spiritual practice. But if you’re not Christian, or religious, or spiritual, don’t worry — people from many traditions (and lack thereof) sing Sacred Harp.

More information is available at fasola.org.  But the best way to learn about Sacred Harp is to join us for a singing!

For more information about Bay Area Sacred Harp, the nonprofit that promotes shape note singing in the region, visit our About BASH page.

Woman holding tune book leads a song in hollow square.