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Mander Organs

Tony Newnham

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Everything posted by Tony Newnham

  1. Hi I agree with you Colin - I've only heard a very small handful of early music pieces played on piano that I've found somewhat acceptable. I'd much rather hear original instruments. Every Blessing Tony
  2. Hi A lot of Radio 3 programmes have been either stopped or moved - irritating. Every Blessing Tony
  3. Very sorry to hear this. Prayers for his family & others affected by his passing. Every Blessing Tony
  4. Hi Yes he did. Great European Organs no 56, dating from early 2000's. I have a copy in my CD collection, but I've not played it recently so can't comment on the sound, but I don't recall any significant issues when I did listen. Every Blessing Tony
  5. Hi Some of the devices are already used for stop control, etc. by users of Hauptwerk & other pipe organ simulators, and since they output (or can be persuaded to output) the relevant MIDI commands it should be possible to interface them with a pipe organ that has MIDI facilities including MIDI inputs, but I see little point. Why would I want to play an organ from a piano keyboard when the proper console is there. I can think of a couple of possible scenarios, but it's not something I'd want to do regularly. It's a strange feeling playing organ sounds from a weighted piano keyboard! Just because something CAN be done doesn't mean that it's a good idea to actually do it! Every Blessing Tony
  6. Hi Somewhere in my music collection I have an organ duet (2 organs) arrangement of something (possibly Battle Hymn of the Republic) by Porter Heaps. I've never played it - can't remember now why I bought it many years ago. Every Blessing Tony
  7. Try MCPS (Mechanical Copyright Protection Society) (or whatever they call themselves these days). In most cases they have the answer to copyright issues for recordings, and can tell you what to do if they don't have the info. They will also deal with all the licensing (on payment of a fee of course!). PRS (Performing Rights Society) deal with public performance licensing. I've found MCPS to be very helpful, they'd rather not have to chase those who infringe copyrights. It's been a few years since I've had to deal with them though - I've produced a handful of recordings on cassette & CD over the years, but nothing recently aside from my own (simple) arrangements of hymn tunes that are in the public domain. Every Blessing Tony
  8. Very pleased to see a Mustel being used. As to Colin's original post, Cambridge Reed Organs when I last heard were concentrating on hire work, as is Phil Fluke, but as Phil still retains a large collection, it would be worth asking him about surplus parts (https://harmoniumhire.co.uk/). Karl Heslop who has recently started out on his own account as an organ builder (and is currently restoring a small reed organ for me) might just be interested (https://www.facebook.com/carl.heslop). I also noticed recently that David Shuker at Sign of the Pipe is advertising reed organ restoration (http://www.signofthepipe.com/index.html). I think there's also another set-up in the UK hiring & restoring reed organs, but I've not heard of them recently and don't have contact with them. There are a few enthusiasts around too, some of whom do their own repairs & restorations (and some are members of the Reed Organ Society). Their council member for the UK (currently me, but not for much longer) has an e-mail list, so anything particularly interesting can be circulated - but rehoming reed organs is difficult because of a lack of appreciation in general for their musical qualities, plus the issue of restoring something that will be between c.50 & c.150 years old! Much the same problems as pipe organs really! Every Blessing Tony
  9. Hi With regard to the diminuendo on the last chord, the organist I mentioned was brought up as a Baptist, and was by a significant number of years the longest-standing member of my congregation, so it's obviously not just a Primitive Methodist "things".
  10. Hi The organist in my last church did that at the end of most hymns. I've no idea where it came from, and it sounded extremely odd on a 5 stop unenclosed chamber organ! I guess like legato touch it was the suggested norm at some time in the past. Every Blessing Tony
  11. Hi Many decades ago, whilst learning to play the organ, I was taught that, in hymn accompaniment where there were repeated notes in one or more parts to tie the inner parts and possibly the bass, but not the soprano line. Not sure I'd want to be rigid about it these days, but it might provide a starting point. Every Blessing Tony
  12. Hi I do hope MM can get his book published - I much prefer real books to reading things off screen - however I do realise the problems. A good few years ago, a friend of mine wrote a book on a rather obscure topic (The development of the rose engine - the machine used for decorative pattern engraving on watch cases & the like). Although the books sold at a fair price (for the time) I guess it cost him. (I got a free copy both as a friend & because I'd made a small contribution to the contents.) At least MM shouldn't have the disaster I had - I'd researched the history of the church I was minister at for an essay in an Open Theological College course, and thought I'd print a few copies, until I discovered from a local historian just in time that the one book I'd found about the history of the village was grossly inaccurate! I still haven't got round to revising it. However it's released, I look forward to reading MM's Compton book - and I really must re-visit Colin's website! Every Blessing Tony
  13. Hi I did some research on pedals on early English organs as a small part of a talk I gave to the Bradford Organists' Association back in 2009. I append my notes below, but in essence there MAY have been an example of pedal pull downs ass early as 1635 (Jesus College, Cambridge). Earliest confirmed independent pedal pipes was 1793 - added by Avery to the organ in Westminster Abbey. On another point, I'm not sure I fully agree about the lack of tonal variety - it's surprising just what can be done with limited resources. No time for more now - I'm preaching & leading the service this morning (as well as playing) and need to get ready! Every Blessing Tony From my notes for a talk/demonstration on Early English Organs:- Development of pedals – separate keyboard for pedal stops (pix) – compass of pedals – (pix. – inc. Toe pedals from “Organbuilding 8 & Gt. Chishill) (Also same benefice – Elmdon St Nick, Flight c.1867) Pull Downs may have existed at Jesus college, Cambridge in 1635 – no independent pedal pipes. 1720-21 pedals at St Paul’s Cathedral, London. CC compass St Mary, Redcliff (1726) –CC compass Samuel Wesley is quoted as saying “pedals might be of service to those who could not use their fingers” (1840) By early 1800’s most larger organs had at least pull-downs, and most had a set of independent pedal pipes. (Some chamber organs had 16ft stop in bottom octave for use by hand or feet). Earliest confirmed pedal pipes 1793, Westminster Abbey – added by Avery 1793. Thistlethwaite lists some 43 organs that possibly had pedal pipes dating from 1773 (Green’s organ for Walsall Parish Church – details uncertain) to 1820. 16ft pipes unpopular with builders while GG compass was the norm – cost & size. Pedals initially provided a “third hand” for pedal points and complex textures.
  14. Hi My home digital has a range of temperaments - but I'm never sure what's the most appropriate for a particular piece. I'm currently working on a C.P.E. Bach Sonata, and there's one particular passage that sounds very strange in ET (And no - it's not due to wrong notes!). It's an interesting area to study - if I ever have time & inclination. Every Blessing Tony
  15. Hi There are Hammond Organs adverts in "The Organ" magazine from many years ago mentioning the Canterbury Cathedral installation. If I have time & feel up to going upstairs I'll try and look them out and see what date they were published. Every Blessing Tony
  16. Hi Having in the past played the Rye Wurlitzer a number of times for the school carol concert, I can vouch for the fact that theatre organs - with suitable registration (and you do need sometimes to think outside the box) can work effectively for "serious" repertoire. I've even heard the (in)famous Widor Toccata played on the Rye Wurlitzer by Nigel Spooner F.R.C.O. I enjoy playing theatre organ when I get the chance, which isn't very often. Every Blessing Tony
  17. Hi Reading the previous few comments, firstly, was it Jack Davies' firm that developed a hybrid part pipe part electronic back in the day? Secondly, there was an electronic organ firm called "Livingstone-Burge". I've come across a handful of their instruments back in the day, but I'm not sure where they fit into the general history of such instruments. Every Blessing Tony
  18. Hi The Early Music Shop in Saltaire stocks (or at least used to stock) modern reproductions of the Serpent. Also, of course, there are a handful of organs that have stops called Serpent - the one I've played is Blackburn Cathedral. Every Blessing Tony
  19. Hi The introduction of robed chancel based choirs (and hence organs close to the chancel) in English Parish Churches was in the main a result of the Oxford Movement in the 1800's, prior to that, the West Gallery was the common place for musicians (West Gallery Bands), choirs, and in the churches that had such things, organs. The organ history of many churches includes the removal of the organ from the West Gallery to a chancel chamber or one of the transepts. Every Blessing Tony
  20. Hi Interesting to read Ian's comments about the introduction of organs in Victorian churches. There were other significant influences, notably the Oxford Movement which encouraged a return to medieval ways of doing things in church (as interpreted by themselves!), aided by the Cambridge Camden Society on the architectural side. Part of the move to introduce organs was to bring music more under control of the incumbent - contemporary reports indicate that things got rather rowdy at times. An organ meant that the Incumbent only had to deal with one player (often his wife or the local school master). Harmoniums and other reed organs were common, and 2 manual & pedal organs were (and are) far from universal. At one time I played regularly for weddings & funerals in a rural benefice in Essex, of the 5 churches I got to, only 1 had a 2 manual organ, and that only had a TC swell, there were 3 single manual & pedal jobs - one a GG compass complete with a 13 note GG pedalboard, and the other was a single manual no pedal electronic. Another church in the group had a reed organ, but I never got to play there. The study of the how the English church changed in the Victorian era is fascinating (I chose to study this period of church history as part of my theological training). The 2 volumes of "The Victorian Church" by Owen Chadwick deals in some depth with this period and its complexities. On the organ history front, I have the 2 books mentioned above on my shelves, along with some individual histories of organ builders and so on, but given the sheer number of builders operating in that period of very rapid church growth, no one volume can hope to cover the whole ground. The Victorian era not only saw existing church buildings wanting organs because it was fashionable to sack the West Gallery band and get an organ, there was also a very significant amount of new church building, both within the Church of England, especially in the ever-growing industrial cities, and also thousands of free churches of various denominations, many of which wanted an organ of some sort. The era saw an organ-building boom! Every Blessing Tony
  21. Hi Thanks for the comment John, I have seen some of Keith Emerson's performances. I also like Rick Wakeman - another classically trained musician. A few years back he recorded a CD on the Lincoln Cathedral Organ, and has used pipe organ on a number of his recordings over the years. At one time he toured with a 2 rank extension organ built IIRC by our hosts here. Every Blessing Tony
  22. Hi I guess all organ builders had good and bad instruments - and don't forget ideas of what makes a good organ have changed over the years! I've not come across more than a few Conachers and they've all been OK, and indeed, one of my favourite small organs is the Conacher in Steeple Bumpstead Congregational Church in Essex, see NPOR http://www.npor.org.uk/NPORView.html?RI=N13335 Every Blessing Tony
  23. Talking of playing more than one organ of more than one type, how about this. I guess the "theatre organ" is a digital though:- Every Blessing Tony
  24. Hi My current main headphones are Sennheiser HD 289 Pro. I've had them a couple of years now. Good, balanced sound and reasonable isolation from external noises. I have a few other sets of 'phones about the place by Sennheiser & Audi-Technica. Every Blessing Tony
  25. Thanks MM I would agree that the Canterbury Compton was probably pipes. Interesting to know that they tried the remote organ idea more than once. Every Blessing Tony
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