Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Randall, John (1715-1799)

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RANDALL, JOHN (1715–1799), organist, born in 1715, was a chorister of the Chapel Royal under Bernard Gates [q. v.] On 23 Feb. 1732 at Gates's house, Randall acted and sang the part of Esther in the dramatic representation of Handel's oratorio. In 1744 he graduated Mus. Bac. at Cambridge. In the following year he was appointed organist to King's College Chapel; in 1755 he succeeded Dr. Greene as professor of music in the university of Cambridge, and in 1756 he proceeded Mus. Doc. Assisted by his pupil, William Crotch, who joined him in 1786, Randall retained his appointments until his death at Cambridge on 18 March 1799. His wife predeceased him on 27 April 1792.

Randall set to music Gray's ‘Ode for the Installation of the Duke of Grafton as Chancellor of the University,’ 1768. He published ‘A Collection of Psalm and Hymn Tunes, some of which are new and others by permission of the authors, with six Chants and Te Deums, calculated for the use of congregations in general,’ Cambridge, 1794. Of these his six original tunes are said to be ‘Cambridge,’ ‘Trinity Church,’ ‘Garden,’ ‘Yelling,’ ‘King's,’ and ‘University,’ but Randall is best known by his two double chants (Grove). ‘The Hopeless Lover,’ London (1735?), and other songs are attributed to Randall.

[Burney's History, iv. 360; Sketch of the Life of Handel, p. 22; Chrysander's Handel, ii. 273; Grove's Dictionary, iii. 73; Gent. Mag. 1792, p. 480.]

L. M. M.