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Brindley, Schulze And Lewis


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Recent discussions about these builders (under the thread on "Dulciana Mixtures") has revealed some interesting connections between them, of which I was previously unaware, and raised some interesting questions for Hauptwerkians.

 

Anyone who uses Hauptwerk will have initmate knowledge of the organ of St Anne's, Moseley, described as "Brindley & Foster, 1907", but it would now appear that that description is an over-simplification.

 

The specifications as given on NPOR and on the church's own website give rise to some confusion:

http://npor.emma.cam.ac.uk/cgi-bin/Rsearch...ec_index=N00645

http://www.st-annes-moseley.org.uk/organ.html

http://www.st-annes-moseley.org.uk/organspec.html.

 

The former (survey date 1984) mentions pipework by "Shultz" (sic) and "Lewis".

The latter mentions an earlier organ by "J.C. (sic) Lewis of Brixton, London" whose pipework was included in the 1907 instrument, and also allegedly includes pipework by "Schultz" (sic). There were further improvements and additions by Nicholsons in 1984 and 1990 (NPOR needs updating - Tony?).

 

Are "Shultz" and "Schultz" misprints, and is this really the Schulze of Armley/Doncaster fame?

Is "JC Lewis" a misprint for the famous TC?

 

Douglas

 

[Enjoying a Sunday morning off - as all our roads are closed for the Tour de France and we can't go anywhere - but unable to explore the mysteries of Moseley any further, since the HW organ is out on hire to a local choral society.]

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Recent discussions about these builders (under the thread on "Dulciana Mixtures") has revealed some interesting connections between them, of which I was previously unaware, and raised some interesting questions for Hauptwerkians.

 

Anyone who uses Hauptwerk will have initmate knowledge of the organ of St Anne's, Moseley, described as "Brindley & Foster, 1907", but it would now appear that that description is an over-simplification.

 

The specifications as given on NPOR and on the church's own website give rise to some confusion:

http://npor.emma.cam.ac.uk/cgi-bin/Rsearch...ec_index=N00645

http://www.st-annes-moseley.org.uk/organ.html

http://www.st-annes-moseley.org.uk/organspec.html.

 

The former (survey date 1984) mentions pipework by "Shultz" (sic) and "Lewis".

The latter mentions an earlier organ by "J.C. (sic) Lewis of Brixton, London" whose pipework was included in the 1907 instrument, and also allegedly includes pipework by "Schultz" (sic). There were further improvements and additions by Nicholsons in 1984 and 1990 (NPOR needs updating - Tony?).

 

Are "Shultz" and "Schultz" misprints, and is this really the Schulze of Armley/Doncaster fame?

Is "JC Lewis" a misprint for the famous TC?

 

Douglas

 

[Enjoying a Sunday morning off - as all our roads are closed for the Tour de France and we can't go anywhere - but unable to explore the mysteries of Moseley any further, since the HW organ is out on hire to a local choral society.]

 

 

=========================

 

It's very easy to get carried away with speculation, but to date, I can think of no real connection between T C Lewis and Schulze, save for the fact that Lewis admired Schulze above all others.

 

The Karly Schulze connected with Brindley & Foster as an employee, would have worked for him around 1870(?)-85, because we do know that he left the company when Albert Keates set up in business and tempted Karl Schulze away from Brindley & Foster, who were rapidly going down the path of factory-organ production by that time.

 

Quite how Lewis pipework (presumably almost contemporary) could find its way into a Brindley & Foster instrument is hard to fathom, unless the Brindley & Foster instrument hurriedly built to cope with larger congregations, and used some older pipework.

 

M Schultz (sic) I have never heard of, and can find no evidence of; yet that name could certainly be connected with piano-making and harmonium-making, so there is a very tentative link.

 

It really comes down to the very solid connection between Charles Brindley and Edmund Schulze; to the extent that Brindley had considerable involvement at both Doncaster and Armley.

 

As with all these things, there were also outside suppliers (Violette pipes?) who supplied several organ-builders, and personally, I very much doubt that Edmund Schulze had much of a hand in anything to which his name was attached; save for his very real and personal collaboration with Henry Booth of Otley (later Leeds). I suspect that Schulze was happy to make available his pipe-scales and patterns, and others were happy to climb onto the band-wagon of the Schulze phenomenon. In any event, Edmund Schulze didn't live long after Armley was built.

 

Interestingly, it usually an "Open Diapason" or "Gamba" to which the term "Schulze" applies, but considering the fact that Schulze didn't have a metal-shop back in Germany, such a claim was really quite meaningless. Of course, it MAY have been possible that Schulze had the pipes made, voiced them and then sent them to other organ-builders, but considering the abilities of people like Charles Brindley, T C Lewis and Karl Schulze, this seems very unlikely.

 

On the other hand, he DID collaborate with Henry Booth, and he DID voice quite a lot of ranks in at least one Methodist Church organ built by Booth in West Yorkshire (now mercifully re-housed elesewhere and in good condition).

 

Of course, there is also the outside possibility that some of the pipes from the Great Exhibition Organ (later at Northampton Town Hall, which disappeared without trace), may have floated around the trade in some sort of clandestine black-market, but we are back to speculation.

 

The connection between all these people (which must also include Thos.Pendlebury and Forster & Andrews of Hull), was really a desire to imitate and market the Schulze sound, and in fairness, both Brindley and T C Lewis came fairly close.

 

I would just re-state what I said previously, that any Brindley organ between about 1870 and 1885 is worthy of preservation and will usually demonstrate quite splendid pipe-voicing.

 

MM

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"Schulze didn't have a metal-shop back in Germany"

(Quote)

 

Really ?

(Ask Mr Töpfer...)

 

Pierre

 

 

==============================

 

 

Unless you are about to alter our perception of the Schulze "empire," (which consisted of a house with a magnificently carved front-door and a couple of converted chicken-sheds as workshops), I think I will stick with the belief that Schulze obtained all his metal-pipes from trade-suppliers. This was certainly the case in England, to the best of my knowledge, and it may go some way towards explaining the number of wood-basses such as Violones, and the large number of wooden-flutes in his instruments.

 

The workmanship of Schulze reeds is almost lamentable, and really quite rough, yet the flues are perfectly well-made. What does this tell us?

 

Furthermore, the scaling of the bottom octave of the 32ft reed at Doncaster is way out; and about 25% underlength.

 

Whatever one thinks of Schulze, he and his craftsman were a bit sloppy in many ways, and there is a roughand apparent almost everywhere. It goes to show how a voicing genius can work with inferior pipes and get the best results.

 

Of course, the Schulze "empire" was only ever part-time, because when they wern't building organs, the staff were out working the fields and gathering the harvest at Paulinzelle.

 

As compared to many other organ-builders,Schulze didn't actually build that many, which is why the English examples are so priceless and the stuff of pilgrimage.

 

MM

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Thanks to MM for the helpful info.

 

To answer a couple of your questions:

Quite how Lewis pipework (presumably almost contemporary) could find its way into a Brindley & Foster instrument is hard to fathom, unless the Brindley & Foster instrument...used some older pipework.

It did [see my original post]. The first organ, installed in the church in 1875, was a chamber organ by Lewis. The 1907 B&F incorporated this pipework.

 

M Schultz (sic) I have never heard of, and can find no evidence of

I think you'll find the "M" on the NPOR specification stands for "Metal" (and "W" for wood).

Two of the pedal stops (one wood, one wood and metal) are attributed (in part, at least) to "Schultz".

Which then raises the questions: Is this Karl or Edmund, and were they related?

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Thanks to MM for the helpful info.

 

To answer a couple of your questions:

 

It did [see my original post]. The first organ, installed in the church in 1875, was a chamber organ by Lewis. The 1907 B&F incorporated this pipework.

I think you'll find the "M" on the NPOR specification stands for "Metal" (and "W" for wood).

Two of the pedal stops (one wood, one wood and metal) are attributed (in part, at least) to "Schultz".

Which then raises the questions: Is this Karl or Edmund, and were they related?

 

 

=====================

 

 

Oh of course! I should have realised that W & M didn't mean "William and Mary" period! <_<

 

So we've solved the problem of the Lewis pipes, which should be carefully guarded and surrounded with barbed-wire.

 

The "Schulze" question is a bit more difficult to fathom, and the truth may never be known. Schulze didn't voice every pipe himself, and at Doncaster for instance, Charles Brindley did quite a bit of the voicing, as did his own employees, such as a man named Vo'gler (who ended up at Forster & Andrews) and the Karl Schulze who ended up working with Brindley's in Sheffield.

 

As I mentioned to Barry Williams by private reply, Dennis Thurlow once showed me a voicing book, in which the margins included references marked by a large "S" to indicate Schulze. The trouble is, he didn't know who the voicer was!!

 

However, it was certainly not uncommon for Schulze ranks to end up in a variety of instruments, and off the cuff, I can think of "Schulze" pipes included in organs by Forster & Andrews, (All Soul's, Hayley Hill, Halifax especially), organs built by Booth of Otley (with whom Schulze collaborated for a while), the organ of Leeds PC, Harrogate PC (after the Armley Schulze had been removed)......and the list goes on.

 

Of course, what we don't know is whether Schulze ever actually touched them at all, or whether they were supplied by others and voiced by those who knew the Schulze style. There is, if the pipes remain untouched, a way of telling. Firstly, the pipe toes will be just cut off square (open foot voicing), and secondly, the windways will be very narrow. It's worth checking this, just in case the pipes remain as they were made. If you find leathered lips and saw-tooth nicking......well......

 

Like all fashions, the Schulze phenomenon had a drastic effect on northern organ-building and on T C Lewis, and as one vicar at St.Bart's Armley suggested, "Schulze probably had more disciples than Jesus Christ!"

 

MM

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Guest Cynic
=====================

Oh of course! I should have realised that W & M didn't mean "William and Mary" period! <_<

 

So we've solved the problem of the Lewis pipes, which should be carefully guarded and surrounded with barbed-wire.

 

The "Schulze" question is a bit more difficult to fathom, and the truth may never be known. Schulze didn't voice every pipe himself, and at Doncaster for instance, Charles Brindley did quite a bit of the voicing, as did his own employees, such as a man named Vo'gler (who ended up at Forster & Andrews) and the Karl Schulze who ended up working with Brindley's in Sheffield.

 

As I mentioned to Barry Williams by private reply, Dennis Thurlow once showed me a voicing book, in which the margins included references marked by a large "S" to indicate Schulze. The trouble is, he didn't know who the voicer was!!

 

However, it was certainly not uncommon for Schulze ranks to end up in a variety of instruments, and off the cuff, I can think of "Schulze" pipes included in organs by Forster & Andrews, (All Soul's, Hayley Hill, Halifax especially), organs built by Booth of Otley (with whom Schulze collaborated for a while), the organ of Leeds PC, Harrogate PC (after the Armley Schulze had been removed)......and the list goes on.

 

Of course, what we don't know is whether Schulze ever actually touched them at all, or whether they were supplied by others and voiced by those who knew the Schulze style. There is, if the pipes remain untouched, a way of telling. Firstly, the pipe toes will be just cut off square (open foot voicing), and secondly, the windways will be very narrow. It's worth checking this, just in case the pipes remain as they were made. If you find leathered lips and saw-tooth nicking......well......

 

Like all fashions, the Schulze phenomenon had a drastic effect on northern organ-building and on T C Lewis, and as one vicar at St.Bart's Armley suggested, "Schulze probably had more disciples than Jesus Christ!"

 

MM

 

What is important is not who voiced the pipes, necessarily, any more than who made them. Arthur Harrison, to name another celebrater 'voicer' carried out most of his work from the organ bench. What is so impressive about the results of both AH and Schulze is the regulation, the immaculate tonal finishing. To carry this work out always involves two people (as a minimum) anyway - one by the pipes another at the keys. It is not an individual pipe, but the balance between notes, the perfect match, the blend and gradual progression (sometimes involving a slight crescendo in the upper part of the manual) that makes a stop beautiful to listen to.

 

I believe I have read of AH having quite a large team present during tonal finishing - those 'on the floor of the church' being equipped with carpet slippers for the prime purpose of running to and fro silently in order to provide AH with the few troublesome pipes for his personal attgention - or to speed up his setting of the Cs. Father Willis, it is recounted, after struggling with odd pipes that refused to come into perfect line would snap them against his leg and order a new pipe.

 

There are still some very fine voicers around, some of the best are free-lance (as Billy Jones was). Their results still speak of tireless patience and the willingness of decent firms to go the extra mile for a high quality result.

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Their results still speak of tireless patience and the willingness of decent firms to go the extra mile for a high quality result.

I think this unfairly maligns the workaday firms, who are, after all, constrained by their customers' budgets. You don't go to a Jaguar dealer if all you can afford is a Skoda, but the latter will get you from A to B. Top quality costs. Those firms with the right reputation can provide that quality, because those customers with the budget to pay for it will go to them. But that doesn't mean they're any more willing to go the extra mile than would be Boggis and Sons, for the same budget. And again, it's the customer who makes the tradeoff between finishing time and a couple of extra ranks of pipes.

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I think this unfairly maligns the workaday firms, who are, after all, constrained by their customers' budgets. You don't go to a Jaguar dealer if all you can afford is a Skoda,

 

Actually, you do. The Jag X-type prices overlap the Skoda Octavia's by about 7k. Having had both, I much prefer the Skoda!

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During a seminar about "Quality" in the U.S. we learnt

this word is meaningless, since there are several dozens

of definitions to it....Some will name Jaguar's niceley made

dashboards, others the Toyota's "no frills no breakdown" habits.

 

Same with an organ: quality may mean expansive woods with

a lushy finish, or a comfortable, well-equipped console and

manic voicing (late-romantic traits by the way...)

This word "Quality" is too vague and should be reserved

to Marketing crew.

 

Pierre

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I think this unfairly maligns the workaday firms, who are, after all, constrained by their customers' budgets. You don't go to a Jaguar dealer if all you can afford is a Skoda

 

HOW DARE YOU!! :P

 

We have two Skodas (a Fabia VRS and a MK II Octavia estate) and I am more than happy to run around in either car, in preference to a Jag., thank you very much!

 

<_<

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Open pigeons...insert cat.

Example deliberately chosen for the reasons stated in the replies to my posts - the point is that it is the customer's budget, not the firm's image (whether this image be a reflection of their current output or some folk memory of past glories) that determines the quality of the end result.

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Actually, you do. The Jag X-type prices overlap the Skoda Octavia's by about 7k. Having had both, I much prefer the Skoda!

 

 

==========================

 

 

This is, of course, the choice between a Ford Mondeo and a Volksgwagen. Both are very well made.

 

:rolleyes:

 

MM

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During a seminar about "Quality" in the U.S. we learnt

this word is meaningless, since there are several dozens

of definitions to it....Some will name Jaguar's niceley made

dashboards, others the Toyota's "no frills no breakdown" habits.

 

Same with an organ: quality may mean expansive woods with

a lushy finish, or a comfortable, well-equipped console and

manic voicing (late-romantic traits by the way...)

This word "Quality" is too vague and should be reserved

to Marketing crew.

 

Pierre

 

 

===========================

 

 

Those who know what quality really means, would buy a Lexus. (By Toyota of course!)

 

MM

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Guest Cynic
Open pigeons...insert cat.

Example deliberately chosen for the reasons stated in the replies to my posts - the point is that it is the customer's budget, not the firm's image (whether this image be a reflection of their current output or some folk memory of past glories) that determines the quality of the end result.

 

 

I don't particularly want to argue, but I would still maintain that some firms (in both planning and costing) allow for a specialist voicer to attend and finish an organ - I know two top-class voicers who do exactly this work for a number of firms. There are other firms that don't, and in some of those cases, their organs would be a damn sight better musical instruments if they did.

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Slightly off the beaten track although it mentions Schulze, but the current edition of our local Organists' Assn newsletter carries an advertisement .......................................

 

"Organist and Choirmaster required ........St Peter's Church, Hindley, Wigan. 16 strong choir (many members of local choral societies) backed by a well digitised three manual organ (it used to connect to our Shultz) need help! Basic retainer of £2500pa for two Sunday sewrvices plus Thursday choir rehearsal. Also option for weddings/funerals @ RSCM rates. Contact Rev XXXXXXX"

 

Anyone tempted?!!!!!!

 

The church in question is my "home" church where my interest in the organ first began at the age of 10, and of course, refers to the fine three manual instrument by Schulze which still stands in all it's glory at the West end of the church. The console was turned into the console for the present toaster, installed three or four years ago.

 

One of the finest examples of ecclesiastical vandalism I have ever come across.

 

 

Neil

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Slightly off the beaten track although it mentions Schulze, but the current edition of our local Organists' Assn newsletter carries an advertisement .......................................

 

"Organist and Choirmaster required ........St Peter's Church, Hindley, Wigan. 16 strong choir (many members of local choral societies) backed by a well digitised three manual organ (it used to connect to our Shultz) need help! Basic retainer of £2500pa for two Sunday sewrvices plus Thursday choir rehearsal. Also option for weddings/funerals @ RSCM rates. Contact Rev XXXXXXX"

 

Anyone tempted?!!!!!!

 

The church in question is my "home" church where my interest in the organ first began at the age of 10, and of course, refers to the fine three manual instrument by Schulze which still stands in all it's glory at the West end of the church. The console was turned into the console for the present toaster, installed three or four years ago.

 

One of the finest examples of ecclesiastical vandalism I have ever come across.

Neil

I won't presume to comment on the pros and cons of replacing the Hindley Schulze organ with a pipeless instrument, since I know nothing of the circumstances and it was/is obviously very controversial.

All I would say - since I believe the "toaster" to be the work of Hugh Banton - is that they could have done a h*** of a lot worse. HB is, IMHO, one of the best digital organ builders in the country today and is, allegedly, one of only a tiny handful of people who really know how to get the best out of the "Bradford System" hard- and software.

[Disclaimer: I have no financial interest in HB other than as a very satisfied customer.]

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