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David Drinkell

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About David Drinkell

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 10/12/1955

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  • Location
    Fredericton Cathedral, New Brunswick
  • Interests
    Choral and organ music, food, wine and restaurants, architecture (especially old churches and Charles Rennie Macintosh), the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway....

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  1. My reading of the situation is that HWIII kept his nose clean and said very little directly about the Harrison rebuild, but left it to henchmen like Batigan Verne to stir things up - as in a long correspondence in The Organ.
  2. David Dunnett made the Norwich organ sound better than I've ever heard it when I was there with the Cathedral Singers of Ontario in 2007. It's a very fine instrument indeed, but needs care with the heavier voices if they are to work in with the rest.
  3. I used to practice at Stoke Bishop during my first year at Bristol University - I lived in Badock Hall along the road. A fine old Hele, I thought. I never got round to playing it after Daniel did it up .
  4. Denis Bedard's music is well worth playing - modern but approachable and it falls under the hands and feet well.
  5. Sifting through old files today, I found the following, which I wrote for the Ulster Society of Organists and Choirmasters nearly twenty years ago. It may amuse.... Contra Oboe - a Parable of St. Luke (Belfast) And it came to pass that there was a wedding in an house of the Lord nigh unto the Shankhill, and behold, there came unto that place one to play upon the organs, that the festivity might be the more merry. And he, knowing not what manner of organ there should be, came with haste and gazed upon it with eager eyes. And, lo, there was a stop called Contra Oboe, whereat he rejoi
  6. Bruce is quite right in thinking that the Fredericton console follows the North American pattern of having more than two vertical rows of draw-stops (this is reckoned by British players to be less convenient, but I've never found it to be so). The Swell jamb has the Bourdon at the bottom left and the stops in that row ascend diagonally to the right so that the Viola de Gamba had just enough room beneath it to fit in a Tim Horton's large size cup. The new style lids are higher than the old ones, so there isn't room for the Viola to come out without hitting the lid. Innate is also right
  7. Forumites may not know that an icon of the Canadian way of life is Tim Horton's coffee shops. They are everywhere (even above the Arctic Circle in Nunavut) - if you remember the song "Walk like an Egyptian", the equivalent "Walk like a Canadian" would have one hand outstretched with a Timmie's cup in it. In the last week or so, Timmie's have changed the design of the plastic lids on their cups. The new type makes the cup too high to fit under the Swell stops at the bass end of Fredericton Cathedral organ. A quick jab on a Swell piston could shoot the whole ensemble goodness knows where
  8. LOL - those would have been David Wyld's. Apart from his prowess as an organ builder and recording engineer, he is also an expert at restoring classic cars. Henry Willis III, who introduced the Infinite Speed and Gradation swell pedal, never ran to anything so posh. In one of his letters quoted in Charles Callahan's "The American Classic Organ", he mentions, 'Got a new car - a little Morris'. And I remember Henry 4 saying, in the late eighties, that he had hitherto been loyal to British cars, driving Fords, but had recently succumbed to getting a Japanese one because the build quality
  9. Similarly, the dial indicators showing the position of the shutters with the Willis Infinite Speed and Gradation swell pedals were fuel gauges - I think as used on Rolls Royce cars at the time although I'm not 100% certain of the latter detail. The tilting tablets were used quite widely as an economy measure. The largest example I ever met was the three manual console controlling a Willis rebuild plonked in West Walton Church, Norfolk, which stood there for about twenty years before being supplanted by its predecessor - a Holdich which had remained in the church (although at one time it
  10. Further to posts about the Walker/Compton connection, here's a passage from Nicholas Plumley's article about Walker's, Organists' Review, August 2002: "The period between the wars also saw the first commercially marketed extension organs. Walker's first foray into this field was the hardly known contract they fulfilled for Liverpool's Olympia Theatre as early as 1924. This was a three-manual consisting of 1143 pipes and 16 basic ranks in two separate swell boxes extended to form 84 speaking stops. It possessed a number of interesting features for the early date, and notable among these
  11. Absolutely - Manual extension was never used in Willis organs (apart from where it already existed in rebuilds, such as St. Matthias, Richmond), but Willis III quite often duplexed stops at the same pitch on different manuals (which he insisted was not at all the same thing) - a practice which he picked up from Skinner in America. Similarly, the Junior Development organs, when they included Pedal stops (not all did) borrowed them from the Great Gedeckt, usually with an added 16' octave. I saw a JDP organ in the works at Petersfield in about 1978 which had been rebuilt and did contain man
  12. It was always said that Henry IV had built one of his Junior Development jobs as a "Christmas Tree Organ", but I thought it had subsequently been either altered or recycled. Maybe this is it, or perhaps there was more than one. The problem with the JDP jobs, forgive me for saying so, was that they never sounded very nice. The only one I really liked was at Walberswick in Suffolk, and that improved greatly after John Budgen gave it a going over.
  13. Congratulations to Belfast on securing Matthew, and best wishes to Matthew as he takes up the post. Matthew's wife is a local girl, so he knows the place well - as a previous Organist & Master of the Choristers at St. Anne's, I have very fond memories of Belfast and Northern Ireland, and the rejuvenation and enthusiastic development of activities at the Cathedral (following a traumatic period under a previous Dean - the present one and his predecessor have worked wonders) makes me very happy.
  14. Thank you for the correction. I was writing on the basis of a passage in Ian Bell's article "A Survey of the Work of John Compton" in BIOS Journal 23: "That Year [1925] the company was reconstituted with additional directors including two members of the board of J.W. Walker & Sons [footnote says information from Elvin's book "Pipes and Actions"]. Walker had money but little work; Compton had the prospect of a lot of work, but as always a shortage of capital. The arrangement suited them both, and Walker managed to profit from the cinema boom without being publicly associated with it
  15. The Christchurch Priory diaphonic Contrabass was added by Degens & Rippin as part of their 1964 nave divison. Both D and R were ex-Compton men, and Maurice Forsyth-Grant started off as a Compton enthusiast. I suppose it's possible that D&R acquired the diaphone when Compton's pipe organ side was taken over by Rushworth's in that year. In any event, John Degens would have known well how to voice it. I assume the polyphonic 32 Sub Bass at Christchurch was a genuine Compton example. The 32 Double Open at Lancing College is a diaphone - an example of the not-widely-trumpeted conne
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