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Member Since 24 Apr 2007
Offline Last Active May 21 2017 04:41 AM

Topics I've Started

"Organs and Organists: Their Inside Stories"

09 May 2017 - 06:13 AM

John Mander has very kindly given his blessing for me to make a brazen advertisement for my latest book, "Organs and Organists: Their Inside Stories" on your forum. John himself and several of you have helped by contributing - for all this I am immensely grateful.  

I'll keep it as short as possible since all the info you will need is on the website.

But I am happy, relieved (delirious almost) to tell you all that my almost-sequel to Organ-isms: Anecdotes from the World of the King of Instruments is now in the last stages of production and will be hitting the streets (figuratively speaking I hope) in June/July. It is a vast tome (it put on weight faster than me in a chocky factory) at 416 pages of full colour with masses of cartoons, photos, drawings and goodness knows what else. It took on a life of its own. It is also impossible to describe. A little slideshow of some of the pages on the webpagewill help give you an idea...

The good thing is that I can offer a slight discount for pre-publication expressions of interest.  It will undoubtedly be cheaper for you to order from Butz rather than me if you live in the northern hemisphere . But still put your name down so that we know to contact you once the book is available and you still qualify for the discount as well as the cheaper version from Europe. Both printings are identical - it is just that we are trying to save you money on the postage! 


You can always email me, but the quickest thing is to visit this webpage with the info

Cheerful, and relieved noises,


How many pipe organs in the world - in total?

07 October 2016 - 05:58 PM

How many pipe organs in the world - in total? 

If you count everything, from one manual upwards, but only those that are working, what do you think the ball-park figure might be? I have tried asking this elusive question of a number of organ specialists, as well as trying to nail the sum by doing some totting up of various databases and I'm still not convinced I am getting anywhere near the right number. Possibly the most accurate comment comes from the wonderful, and indefatigable Martin Doering of die-orgelseite.de:

"According to several sources there must be about 120,000 pipe organs in the whole world. Probably about 30% of them are in a poor condition or not playable anymore because there is no money to repair / restore them".


Can anyone add their considered two pennyworth? 

Horseshoe pedal couplers? - how on earth do they work?

13 June 2016 - 08:17 PM

Just curious as to how these horseshoe pedals work - are they like the French spoon couplers? The example I am thinking of is in St Andrew's, Hingham, in Norfolk...

Page turners - ancient and modern!

26 May 2016 - 09:52 PM

A friend of mine uses an iPad (I think it's an iPad rather than a notebook) to read his music from in concerts, while his accomplice sits near the console - perhaps the front pew or a chair in a loft - and turns the page for him remotely using some sort of connection - Bluetooth, WiFi etc. Brave man, I thought, and have wondered whether he ever had problems with system/battery/interference etc. I will be asking him, of course.

But that also lead me to muse on the world of page turners - old style and new style. Being one such, I KNOW there are a wealth of tales out there, both from the point of view of performer and turner. Anyone care to share their tales (anonymity assured) for my book? Some have already run in Organ-isms but there must be as many diverse stories as there are players. And turners...


EDIT: Arghghgh! Sod's Law! I just posted this then found the topic Sheet Music and Tablets - sorry for any duplication. But I am still fascinated to hear your stories... :-)