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Jeremy Ewen

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Everything posted by Jeremy Ewen

  1. Totally OT, but my introduction to organ playing many decades ago was Nicolas Kynaston playing Bach on the Clifton Rieger, Classics for Pleasure. I was able to get it on CD later, when the original LP became see-through by too much playing. But the interesting thing is that when the 16' C pedal notes are held for the second canon and in the grand climax of BWV540, you can't actually hear any bass from the speakers. You can discern that the note is being played, but compared with the many recordings of it which I have in which the grand climax pedal C is on at least a 16' trombone or even a bombarde, or even a 32', it is underwhelming in its effect. Perhaps the microphones were placed at a dead point (antinode?). Can anyone confirm whether or not the 16' at Clifton actually makes any noise if you stand at the right place? ATG ps you can all go back to discussing WM now
  2. Errr.... how can you be more innovative in presenting the organ? Paint it red?
  3. The Winter/Altenbruch is currently available second hand on Amazon. I have this disc and it is wonderfully atmospheric. If only past generations hadn't "improved" the old organs! Maybe there is a lesson to be learned from this. ATG
  4. From memory, yes, plus Cabezon, Praetorius, Pachelbel, the usual suspects. I will have to dig it out and get the record player going again. ATG
  5. Somewhere buried deep I have an LP of Reinhardt Menger playing lots of different regals (mostly desk or bible regals) from a museum in Germany. It has been my recent life's work to try to find this on CD but no luck so far. Yes, they sound rough but most on this record are hundreds of years old, and the choice of repertoire is wonderful. ATG (a self confessed regals-phile)
  6. Many years ago, when the Apollo moon missions were going up regularly, I recall seeing one of the rockets taking off on TV with ASZ playing. I seem to recall that it had the deep pedal note playing for quite a long time after the final mighty chord, and also beforehand for a bit longer than usual. I have listened to many different versions but have never found this one, and being (like most of us on this forum) a bass freak I wondered if anyone knew which version/recording it was. It would have been late 60s/early 70s. Alternatively, are there any current versions out there with extra long pedal intro/outro? Thanks in advance. ATG
  7. OT but the only Gabriel Jackson piece I know is "O nata lux" on a disc from Wells Cathedral, and it's totally sublime. Has anyone done this with their choir? JE
  8. One thing which anyone considering a home practice organ (with pipework) needs to bear in mind is the lack of reverberation in all but the most palatial music/living rooms. This results in quite a dead sound and makes practice of romantic music difficult, although not impossible. Also, appropriately scaled and voiced pipework does not always have the same "zing" as one might expect in a church or hall situation, hence once again a dead sound. I once experimented with electronic reverb with dubious success, that is to say, the improvement was not such that I wanted to go out and purchase the reverb unit (an Alesis Microverb III since you ask) which I had borrowed. That said, in June this year my box of whistles will be 20 years old and still worth something like what I paid for it, which it would not be if it was an electronic. And it looks nicer too, courtesy of Frank Bradbeer and Saxon Aldred. JE
  9. We have a CD of William Christie playing harpsichord works by Fischer, recorded somewhere in France with a Robin chirping along in the background. I must say it adds to the pleasure of listening. JE
  10. Speaking of Ton Koopman, does anyone know if it is possible to get a CD of an old LP he did of Byrd virginal pieces? I've searched on the web but to no avail. It must be out there somewhere; as an example it took me about 15 years to find the CD of Bradford Tracey playing Giles Farnaby virginal works - in the end I got it from Klassik CD in Denmark somewhere. Worth every penny, as the cassette I made when I first borrowed the LP from Crouch End library in about '84 was just about see through, and only played on special occasions. ATG ps Similarly for Colin Tilney playing stuff from Parthenia (a really echo-ey recording, must have had the mike at the other end of the hall).
  11. Yeah, me too, I sent off my £5,000 cheque today for the "facilitation" fee. Funny though, I never heard any more from the other lot, and they seemed so eager..........
  12. I can picture this perfectly! Thanks for the memory jog.... not sure about the Willis though... And you forgot one thing at the end - to be able to walk home in the twilight without encountering traffic, ideally with nothing pressing to do in the evening after tea/supper, and with the day off tomorrow! Paradise indeed. JE
  13. Well I know we're not allowed to advertise but we are moving in a couple of weeks and I have the complete OR since May 1989 looking for a new home, otherwise they're going in the recycle bin. Free to good home but must be collected or parcel post paid. Also double manual keyboard from an old Victorian organ, bone naturals and black sharps. Not sure which maker. PM if interested. JE
  14. The title says it all really. There is a town church near us where I heard the organist regularly did five weddings on summer Saturdays in the old days, just wondered if this sort of thing still happens? JE
  15. Just found another one, although not a playing instrument this time. In "The Copper Beeches" episode of the Sherlock Holmes series with the incomparable Jeremy Brett, there is a scene at about 30 mins where the main characters meet in an upstairs room at an inn. In the left background can distinctly be seen a rather plain flat fronted Georgian organ with three towers of three pipes. The flats between the towers have no cloth or fretwork so I assume this is an empty case. The inn is a half timbered Elizabethan affair with a coat of arms in relief in the plasterwork over the fireplace on the other side of the doorway. Although this part of the story is set in Hampshire, the filming of the main house was evidently done in the north to judge by the construction of the main house, but the inn looks distincly Cheshire-esqe. Any ideas? JE
  16. This organ was one of the first that I ever heard, on an LP of Bach by Nicolas Kynaston on Classics for Pleasure, the sleeve of which showed a magnificent baroque organ! I thought all organs sounded like this; no wonder I turned into a neo-classical fan. I agree about the lack of bass power, during the grand climax towards the end of the prelude of BWV540, the bottom C pedal note can be "discerned" but not exactly felt. I managed to get this as a CD many years back (again on CFP) so no need to wear out the vinyl.
  17. About 15 years ago I managed to pass Grade V Organ and always intended to go on to Grade VI, but the requirement to transpose at sight brought me to an abrupt halt because my poor cranium doesn't work that fast. I know our illustrious readership probably find this really easy but I don't! I wrote to the AB asking them why out of all instruments only the Organ had transposition as an exam element, and their reply predictably was that some churches or choirs might need it. But if I have no intention of playing in church why should this be thought of as essential to one's development? Many other instruments might need to transpose from time to time (ie, forgot to bring my A415 flute to the Baroque ensemble) but so far as I am aware they don't get examined in this way. Any thoughts?
  18. Hi Mark, could you tell me please where the Spang Hanssen Buxtehude boxed set is listed please? I saw it on Amazon at around £19 plus delivery, but nowhere else. Thanks in advance, Jeremy
  19. Looking at the cartoon in the recent OR, it occurred to me that western music might have worked out a whole lot differently if Buxtehude's daughter had been better looking. Just supposing Bach's trip to Lubeck had been one-way, and he ended up being the organist at St Mary's, would he still have composed the same works (the few of which have been left to us) or would life have been different? Would he have had 20 children, and was Miss Buxtehude musical (the cartoon gives her dainty fingers after all), in which case would we have had the "Anna Magdalena" book and the other easy introductions to his keyboard music? Would we have the English Suites? Would we have the cantatas? Would he have written in tablature? Would his organ music have been even better/worse? If the answer is "no" to the above, who would be the most revered organ composer? (Imagine Lizst trying to compose "Fanatasia on B-u-x-t-e-h-u-d-e" !!!!!) What do you think? JE
  20. Hmmmm..... you good people should be aware that if you order this (like I did) you will receive a single CD called Paddy goes to Holyhead, as pictured on the Amazon page (like I did today). I have emailed Caiman to see what they propose to do about it and will let you know. I thought £5.73 was cheap for 7 CDs....... JE
  21. But just to ask the question again (yes, I know I didn't ask it originally), what do people think about the Mayhew complete Bach edition? They're doing it on special offer at £99 for the lot, which seems cheap, but not sure if its any good. JE
  22. I had a similar experience some years ago, when even after the "go in peace" etc one of our NSMs was in the habit of adding a bit more holy wordage. Luckily in those days I used to waft the clergy and choir out with quiet stuff, so it was not a real problem (he just spoke over me). Nowadays, I use the rear view mirror to check that our lady vicar has finished for good, then off I go with something loud, saves time and effort. On a similar thread, I cannot improvise to save my life, so have to judge how long/short an intro to do before they all walk in at the beginning of the service. With the present team I have no problems as they are pretty patient, and I can usually finish off while they get comfortable. But I did once have a visiting priest who just started talkiing while I was getting to the end, even though I had truncated the piece. So I thought, "*** you!!* and just stopped playing on the spot. JE
  23. I was very impressed to see Edward Petherbridge playing what I think was the end of one of the 48 preludes, but not sure what organ it was. Must buy or borrow the DVD sometime.
  24. A few years back I got a bit bored with all the normal stuff I was playing at the Christmas services, so started to make an organ version of the Slade song "Merry Christmas Everybody", but it didn't come to anything because the wife said it was undignified . I thought it would go down quite well, at least everyone would know it, even the ones who only come once a year to the carol service. Has anyone ever gone the whole hog and done something like this, not just the odd line in the middle of an improvisation? JE
  25. Talking about authenticity, I recall many years ago when my wife and I were going through our early music/harpsichord phase, and Trevor Pinnock's recordings were normally made on modern copies, thus helping to make the music sound like it would have done when first written, and Christopher Hogwood always seemed to record on old relics which sounded like 300 year old fruit boxes with fencing wire strung across them. You can guess whose CD's we bought most of (but we did get CH's My Lady Nevells Book because that was all done on new fossils). And quite off topic, it made me laugh during the Lord of the Rings film watching sessions at home, when looking at the (interminable) extras about how exacting they had to be with all the props, accents, landscapes, size differentials, etc, but then completely butchered the plot and style of speech ("follow your nose" indeed!). JE
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