A dataset for Sacred Harp songs


Tags: Data Shapenote

I’ve previously done some analysis involving songs from the Sacred Harp. Some have been serious; some less{’ ‘}so.

One challenge in doing this analysis is having a machine-readable dataset of all songs to work with. The excellent indexes on fasola.org present the information for each individual song on a different page which is great but you can’t easily analyse all the songs at once.

To make future analysis easiser, I’ve prepared a single dataset of all the songs in The Sacred Harp, 1991 Edition (Denson Revision) in both a .CSV spreadsheet and also in a .JSON file.

Download the .CSV spreadsheet (Right click on this link and click Save or Download)

Download the .JSON file (Right click on this link and click Save or Download)

The files are stored in a Github repository here. (Don’t worry if that bit doesn’t make sense. You can still use the CSV and JSON files above.)

Where the data exists, these data are available:

  • song number
  • bare song number (ie. without the ‘t’ or ‘b’ after the song number for top or bottom)
  • song title
  • composer/source
  • composition date
  • poet/source
  • poetry date
  • poetic meter
  • lyrics
  • time signature

I’m planning to add time signature data for all the songs. Time signatures are also included.

Let me know if you find mistakes in the data or if you have any ideas about how to make it better.