Were You There? (Including Stations of the Cross lyrics)

This hymn for Good Friday is generally attributed as an American spiritual:  the original author is unknown and it possibly combines Afro-American and white-spiritual traditions.    A version of the song was first published in  Old Plantation Hymns (Barton, 1899).

There are many different verses in use, including one which has a verse for each of the Stations of the Cross.

With meter 10 10 14 10, it is almost always set to a tune, composer also unknown, called WERE YOU THERE.    Frequently this has been published in the key of Eb, however the version below is a little lower, set in the key of D to accommodate lower-voiced singers.


    Downloads


    Examples

    Congregation and lead singer, piano accompaniment:



    Soloist and choir, unaccompanied:



    Instrumental - guitar:


    Instrumental: organ:

    Lyrics

    A commonly-used set of words

    Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
    Were you there when they crucified my Lord?
    Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
    Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

    Were you there when they nailed him to the tree?
    Were you there when they nailed him to the tree?
    Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
    Were you there when they nailed him to the tree?

    Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?
    Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?
    Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
    Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?

    Were you there when he rose out from the tomb?
    Were you there when he rose out from the tomb?
    Oh, sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble.
    Were you there when he rose out from the tomb?


    Phrases for Stations of the Cross

    1  Were you there when they sentenced him to die?

    2  Were you there when his shoulder bore the cross?

    3  Were you there when he fell beneath the cross?

    4  Were you there when that Mother met her son?

    5   Were you there when Simon held the cross?

    6  Were you there when the woman brought the towel?

    7  Were you there when he fell unto the ground?

    8  Did you weep with the women on the way?

    9  Were you there when he fell one final time?

    10  Were you there when they stripped him of his clothes?

    11  Were you there when they nailed him to the cross?

    12  Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

    13  Were you there when they took him from the cross?

    14  Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?


    ABC Notation

    About ABC notation

    X:1
    T:Were You There
    C:Unknown - spiritual
    O:America
    Z:abc-transcription www.GodSongs.net
    M:4/4
    L:1/4
    K:Dmaj
    A, D| "D" F2 F F| "G" E D "A" F3/2 E/2| "D G"D4- | "D"D2 D F|
    w:1~~~Were you there when they cru-ci-fied my Lord?_ Were you
    w:2~~~Were you there when they nailed him to a tree?
    w:3~~~Were you there when the sun re-fused to shine?
    w:4~~~Were you there when they pierced him in the side?
    w:5~~~Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?
    w:6~~~Were you there when he rose out from the tomb?
    A2 A A| "G" B A A3/2 F/2| "A" E4- | E4| ("D7" A2 "G"d B | "A"A4)|
    w:1~~~there when they cru-ci-fied my Lord?_ Oh___
    w:2~~~there when they nailed him to a tree?
    w:3~~~there when the sun re-fused to shine?
    w:4~~~there when they pierced him in the side?
    w:5~~~there when they laid him in the tomb?
    w:6~~~there when he rose out from the tomb?
    "D"B A2 F | "Bm"F3/2 E/2 D D | "G"E D3| "D" D D3| "G" B, "A7" A,3-|
    w:some-times, it causes_ me to trem-ble, trem-ble, trem-ble.
    A,2 "G" D G | "D" F2 F F| "G" E D "A" F3/2 E/2| "D G" D4- | "D"D2 |]
    w:1~~~~~~~~~ Were you there when they cru-ci-fied my Lord?_
    w:2~~~~~~~~~ Were you there when they nailed him to a tree?
    w:3~~~~~~~~~ Were you there when the sun re-fused to shine?
    w:4~~~~~~~~~ Were you there when they pierced him in the side?
    w:5~~~~~~~~~ Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?
    w:6~~~~~~~~~ Were you there when he rose out from the tomb?

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