A native of Southern Ontario, Graham is Associate Professor Emeritus of Emmanuel College in the University of Toronto, where he designed and instituted Canada’s only Master of Sacred Music program. Previously, he was national Officer for Worship and Music for the United Church, where had roles in publishing the hymnal Voices United (1996) and the book of prayers, Celebrate God’s Presence (2000). He conducted liturgy and music workshops for the denomination monthly for 14 years from Atlantic to Pacific.
As a student in the Bachelor of Music program at University of Toronto, Fred completed the Associateship of the Royal Conservatory, Toronto under Dr. Charles Peaker. On scholarship in Germany, he studied organ with Karl Hochreither and Michael Schneider, 1967–70. A decade later, he was mentored by Russell Saunders, Eastman School of Music, during the Master’s program in Organ Performance. From 1985–91 he was enrolled in the PhD (Liturgical Studies) at Drew University, Madison, NJ. His doctoral thesis on Methodist hymns of the 19th century was published in 2005. More recently, he edited the authorized version of the Revised Common Lectionary, 2012 after he had served two terms as convener of the ecumenical Consultation on Common Texts. Active since 1961 as a pastoral musician, his career took place in Anglican and United churches in Ottawa, Halifax, and the Greater Toronto Area.
Honours include the Davidson Trust prize for excellence in theological teaching, and the Fellowship of the Hymn Society in the United States and Canada (FHS) for distinguished leadership in congregational song. His hymn tunes and arrangements appear in Voices United, More Voices, Common Praise, and Glory to God (PCUSA). A member of the National Council of the RCCO, he acts as Convener of the Professional Support Committee. He is a Licensed Lay Worship Leader in the United Church, and preaches regularly as needed. An inveterate traveller, he currently resides in Guelph, Ontario.