The Music of Elizabeth Alexander

Frequently asked…

…questions about Ordering Music

(For Questions not about Ordering Music, scroll down a little further)

Where can I buy Elizabeth’s music?

Most of my sales are now being handled by my trusty music dealers, leaving me more time to create music and interact with performers. But don’t worry about not being able to find a seller! Each piece’s webpage includes handy-dandy links that will guide you straight to where you need to go.

Licensed PDFs, instant downloads:
~ Many choral and vocal titles: Graphite Marketplace. No minimum order size.
~ All titles in all genres: JW Pepper. Minimum order size may apply

Sheet Music, shipped to you:
~ All titles in all genres: JW Pepper
~ All titles in all genres: Your favorite music dealer

Some of my newest, oldest, and most unusual titles are not yet in the hands of dealers! In those cases you’ll still buy the music directly from me, usually as Licensed PDFs which I will email to you manually after I process your order. Please note: Unlike in the past, you will not be charged at the time you place your order! I’ll email you a bill when I email you your PDF.

If I buy sheet music directly from you, how much will shipping cost?

For direct customer sales my shipping charge is a flat rate of $6.00 no matter what size order you place.

If I buy a licensed PDF directly from you, will I receive it right away?

You can purchase instant downloads of most of my titles from Graphite Marketplace and/or JW Pepper. But if you purchase a licensed PDF from me it won’t be instantly available because I’ll need to create it manually! That might take 2-3 days but if you need it sooner feel free to write that in the memo field, send a message through my contact form, or just give me a call.

I’m buying music for my organization. Can you bill my choir (or church or university or school)?

Absolutely! You’ll receive an invoice by e-mail when your order ships, which you may submit to your organization. Payment is due 30 days after you receive the bill. If your organization takes longer than that to process payments, just let me know.

I’m a MUSIC DEALER looking to place an order. How can I do that?

Most dealers simply send purchase orders to me via email. They’re also welcome to simply give me a call.

If this is your first time ordering music from me simply send me a message through my Contact Form and get you set right up. I’ll also send you a current copy of my dealer policy, which I like to think is flexible and user-friendly.

…questions not about Ordering Music

I’d like to print the lyrics to one of your songs in a concert program. May I do that?

How wonderful that you’re asking permission! You may print any of my original lyrics in concert programs and bulletins, with my blessing. Please include the following copyright notice: “Lyrics copyright (year) by composer Elizabeth Alexander.”

Keep in mind that I’m not in a position to grant reprint permission for lyrics other than my own, even though I publish the music. You’ll need to request that permission yourself. I can provide you with contact information for those poets, lyricists and copyright holders.

Where did the name Seafarer Press come from? Why isn’t the publishing company just named after the composer?

When brainstorming a name for my publishing company I quickly discovered that all of my names and extended family names — Elizabeth, Alexander, Harper, Collins, Adams — happened to be names of established publishing companies. The seed of “Seafarer Press” comes from the composer’s initials: S.E.A.

But beyond this “initial” reason, there are many auspicious aspects to the name Seafarer Press. For starters, the expressions “setting out to sea,” and “being lost at sea,” pretty much sum up my experience of starting a business. In addition, “fare” means “to go or travel” (as in “Fare thee well”), and publishing my music has certainly been a journey!


How do you do this all yourself – composing, publishing, marketing, and distributing?

Haha that’s very funny. I don’t! I have been blessed with…oh good heavens, how many helpers? Good-natured offspring like Simon and Oliver Alexander-Adams, who spent their formative years assisting with orders, mailing campaigns and conferences. Tech-savvy relatives like Steve Harper and Paul Adams, whom I have mercilessly commandeered into my service countless times over the past 25 years. And my talented and savvy composer-publisher colleagues, who give me great advice and help me solve business challenges.

Truly, I have heaps ’n heaps o’ helpers.

Is composer Elizabeth Alexander also a famous poet?

Although composer Elizabeth Alexander (b. 1962, Chester, SC) writes the lyrics to many of her songs, she is not the same Elizabeth Alexander (b. 1962, Harlem, NY) who wrote the poem for Barack Obama’s first inauguration and now heads up the Mellon Foundation. But never fear; you’ll find her here! Elizabeth Alexander the Famous Poet.

Do people frequently misspell the titles of your pieces?

Okay, this is not a commonly asked question. In fact, no one asks it. However, it is such a funny answer that I couldn’t resist slipping it in!

Of course, performers and correspondents misspell the titles of my pieces from time to time — in delightful ways. The most common typo by far is When the Song of the Angles is Stilled, and I have had many queries over the years for pieces like If You Can Walk You Can Sing, If You Can Talk You Can Dance, and even If You Can Walk You Can Walk.

But wait, it gets way better than that! Here are my all-time favorites:

Honestly, I am not making this up.

Are you a member of ASCAP?

Yes! I am listed as both “Elizabeth Alexander” and “Sarah Elizabeth Alexander” (ID#334780654).

Who built your amazing website?

Adrian Tudorache.

I know, I know. Lucky me.