Ausbund, Eine Unparteiische Liedersammlung (B), Unparteiische Liedersammlung (G), Unparteyisches Gesang-Buch, Notabücher, hymn, slow tune, half-fast tune


A survey of Notabücher (tune books) currently used by geographically diverse Amish communities leads to the conclusion that Amish slow tunes can be placed into three categories according to date of origin. I've dubbed these Old, Middle, and New Groups. Old Group tunes are derived from sixteenth century folk songs and Reformation era hymns. Middle Group tunes are, for the most part, based on later German chorales and New Group tunes have been adapted from early American hymn tunes. I begin this article with a brief summary of earlier research on Amish slow tunes, then give an overview of current Notabücher, their compilers, and layout. Next, characteristics of each tune category are given, with musical examples. Lastly, the Notabuch survey appears in chart form.



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