Is a Dmaj7 too weird for this song?

Dusty Turtle
03/26/20 10:09:50PM
@dusty-turtle

Hey folks.  I am arranging an old lullaby called "A La Ru" that was used by Franscican missionaries in a nativity play called Los Pastores that was common in the missions throughout California and the southwest before Mexican independence and before the lands were conquered by the U.S.  You can find the pdf in the link above.

At question is the 6th measure.  It is odd rhythmically and harmonically. I found some sheet music that basically had three notes of two beats each, but I follow here the rhythm of a choral arrangement I heard online so the final note of the measure gets a single beat. It is still odd, but only a little so.

And yet it is the harmonic accompaniment that I ask you about.  The chord in the previous measure is a Bm, and I could stay on that Bm for this measure as well, since the notes are F# and B.  But the rest of the song has such frequent chord changes that to stay on one chord for two measures would feel empty.  I could also use a D chord, since 5 of the 6 beats of the measure are an F#, and the final note is a kind of pick-up for the next measure.  Both of those choices seem bland to me.  I also tried an F#m (either 4-2-2 or 2-2-2) but that option seems odd because I use that chord in measure 4, so going back to it does not have the impact the measure seems to want.

The sheet music that I found (in a book that has some obvious mistakes) has a Gmaj7 there.  The F# in the melody would indeed be the 7th note of that chord, but when I play 3-1-2, it sounds both weird and unsatisfying.  I tried a Dmaj7, playing 0-2-2, and it still sounds weird but kind of intriguing and dare I say jazzy.  Any thoughts?