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Guest Hector5

Bbc Songs Of Praise - Rant Alert (or Never Try And Con An Organist) While

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Guest Hector5

Aw come on BBC - justs how stupid do you think organists actually are!!!!!!! The last hymn - Jerusalem, introduced on the organ, with a nice shot of organist playing (or rather miming) on the Harrison at St Sepulchre's Holborn - only one problem here, the sound came from a toaster, and not a very good one at that (name withheld in case of libel suits). I'm sure the fact that a 32' came into play may have given the game away to some of you. The Harrison was in need of restoration, by what not at least be honest rather than doing such a silly thing as pretending a toaster is really a diminutive Harrison???????

 

By the way, and ideas as to who is to restore the organ, and when it will happen?

 

 

Hector

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...and shame on Huw for his fake demonstration of stops at the H&H console...The Great Open Diapason tapered off with a little diminuendo !

 

But, on the positive side, it's good to see the organ being robustly defended as the best tool for leading worship.

 

WHAT was Malcolm Archer doing ? Could we not have had someone with a bit more pizazz ? Well, a lot more, in fact...

 

H

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Copied from another place because it fits better here:

 

'Have just heard the programme - some nice bits - Malcolm Archer at the Ballroom was a bit alternative. I played a piece the other week that veered off in a similar way to his Jesu Joy - 'trouble was it didn't head towards the seaside rather some atonal zone due to a complete mental block on my part! Huw Edwards was good. Is Gordon Stewart back over here again?

 

AJJ

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The last hymn - Jerusalem, introduced on the organ, with a nice shot of organist playing (or rather miming) on the Harrison at St Sepulchre's Holborn - only one problem here, the sound came from a toaster, and not a very good one at that (name withheld in case of libel suits). I'm sure the fact that a 32' came into play may have given the game away to some of you. The Harrison was in need of restoration, by what not at least be honest rather than doing such a silly thing as pretending a toaster is really a diminutive Harrison???????

As I'm sure we all noted, the programme actually featured several toasters, but not once was the existence of electronic substitutes mentioned. I suppose it was a bit disingenuous of the BBC, but I for one was quite glad they kept stumm about it. The programme was meant to be a celebration of the pipe organ and, while I accept the inevitability of toasters (and the reality that some are better than some pipe organs), I wouldn't want to see them actively promoted in church.

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I once had a very nice letter from Songs of Praise when I wrote pointing out the incongruity of shots (many) of the new and then incomplete Metzler at St. Mary's Oxford interpose with someone playing a 2 man. electronic with more glowing stop tabs than lights on a christmas tree. The writer praised me for my observance but rather made it seem as if few others would have noticed or even been bothered!

 

AJJ

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It has A Double Open Wood 32ft but not a reed. You could see the largest pipes painted white between the case and wall.

 

H

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I was simply very proud. I know Snogs of Praise is a big turn off for most families (at least in my day you could guarantee music from one's own tradition at least 80% of the time), but in these days when our instrument gets minimal media exposure, I was proud to see it take centre stage. It was also good to hear some of the UK's finest and most infectious communicators reach a slightly wider audience. Having hero-worshipped Gordon Stewart and Malcolm Archer as a youngster (and later taught by/worked with both) it was great to sit and watch them (in the inspiring company of Wood, Parsons and Marsden Thomas) with my own keenly musical children.

 

I agree about the toasters, however - what WAS that noise at the end of Jerusalem?? - and also hate that metallic digital echo the ill-disciplined youth of today's BBC insists on adding to perfectly nice acoustics, but in the words of Victoria Wood, Joe Public won't notice... <_<

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Despite the criticisms, I think they deserve our thanks for promoting the King of Instruments. It wasn't, after all, a programme designed for organists, but a programme to showcase the organ to the general public. I think that it served that purpose admirably.

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Guest Roffensis
Despite the criticisms, I think they deserve our thanks for promoting the King of Instruments. It wasn't, after all, a programme designed for organists, but a programme to showcase the organ to the general public. I think that it served that purpose admirably.

 

 

Perhaps now they'll restore the broadcast organ recitals, two or three times a week on Radio 3, that I recall as a kid, which have basically stopped...... :lol:

 

R

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Perhaps now they'll restore the broadcast organ recitals, two or three times a week on Radio 3, that I recall as a kid, which have basically stopped...... :lol:

 

R

Yeh, but from the tone of some the comments posted on this forum, some of us will only tear the recitals to shreds..... :P

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Guest Roffensis
Yeh, but from the tone of some the comments posted on this forun, some of us will only tear the recitals to shreds..... B)

 

 

Very true, sadly :P:) .

 

The BBC could do a sterling job promoting the organ on Radio 3, bringing the instrument to a wider audience and fostering interest in it as a musical instrument and not a hymn machine. Mr Average may just decide to attend an organ recital because of what he heard on the radio etc?....

 

It's hard to believe there were often as many as three organ recitals per week on Radio 3, and usually opening recitals of rebuilt instruments were broadcast too.

 

All but gone. :(

 

Why?

 

R

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The BBC could do a sterling job promoting the organ on Radio 3, bringing the instrument to a wider audience and fostering interest in it as a musical instrument and not a hymn machine. Mr Average may just decide to attend an organ recital because of what he heard on the radio etc?....

 

It's hard to believe there were often as many as three organ recitals per week on Radio 3, and usually opening recitals of rebuilt instruments were broadcast too.

 

All but gone. :)

Well quite. B)

 

Why?

Lord knows. I don't. Of course 40 years ago, which is abround the time you have in mind, I think, the BBC pretty much had a monopoly of radio. Nowadays its all about audience figures in a way it never was then. The organ is presumed to be a turn-off. Sadly there may be something in this. Many musicians do regard it with contempt as an expressionless, mechanical contraption (as Stravinsky said, "The monster never breathes"). But then all musicians have their pet hates, don't they? Mozart didn't like the flute. Or maybe the organ is seen as inextricably connected with the church and therefore by definition a bit looney. Or is it something to do with problems of access for recording and unsociable hours? Search me.

 

Then again the organ is not the only instrument the BBC neglects. Ask children, or adults for that matter, what instrument they would fancy playing and hear how often the harp is mentioned. Yet how often do you hear a harp recital? Even less than an organ one, probably, despite it being one of the most popular instruments of all.

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Has anyone noticed that not only has Radio 3 abandoned organ recitals but they seem to think that the only solo instrument is a piano. Everytime I turn the radio on these days there seems to be a piano track playing. Early morning, teatime and, occasionally if I wake up , in the middle of the night as well. I know that there is a lot of good solo piano works but I'm sure if I hear another piece of Chopin, I'll scream. It's put me off listening to piano recitals anymore. Returning to the old "Music for Organ" series, I used to tape these using an old cassette tape recorder, starting I believe in 1972 or 1973. I still have boxes of the things somewhere. The recording quality may not be up to today's standards but I'd wager there's some fascinating stuff tucked away there.

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I've given up on the beeb, and bought a Logitech Squeezebox - a 'wifi radio tuner' that plugs into my amp and allows access to several thousand internet radio stations, including Organlive (organ music 24x365, with NO presenters) Choirboys and Trebles (choral music 25x365 with NO presenters), Sacred Choral Music, (you get the idea) Choral Treasure etc.

 

Go and have a look at www.live365.com - and this is only a tiny fraction of what's out there on the net.

 

Since all the beeb's radio channels - including the digital-only ones - are also available on the internet, and since all my CDs were long since ripped to iTunes, which the slimserver also knows about, this gadget has become the only audio source I ever use. (And no, I don't have shares in the company!).

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Go and have a look at www.live365.com - and this is only a tiny fraction of what's out there on the net

Ooh! Another one for my favourites. I see I have just missed a track from Mr Coram's CD. I hope he's getting royalties!

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I've given up on the beeb, and bought a Logitech Squeezebox - a 'wifi radio tuner' that plugs into my amp and allows access to several thousand internet radio stations, including Organlive (organ music 24x365, with NO presenters) Choirboys and Trebles (choral music 25x365 with NO presenters), Sacred Choral Music, (you get the idea) Choral Treasure etc.

 

Go and have a look at www.live365.com - and this is only a tiny fraction of what's out there on the net.

 

Since all the beeb's radio channels - including the digital-only ones - are also available on the internet, and since all my CDs were long since ripped to iTunes, which the slimserver also knows about, this gadget has become the only audio source I ever use. (And no, I don't have shares in the company!).

Crumbs. All this modern technology! Is it compatible with my gramophone?

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Has anyone noticed that not only has Radio 3 abandoned organ recitals but they seem to think that the only solo instrument is a piano. Everytime I turn the radio on these days there seems to be a piano track playing. Early morning, teatime and, occasionally if I wake up , in the middle of the night as well. I know that there is a lot of good solo piano works but I'm sure if I hear another piece of Chopin, I'll scream. It's put me off listening to piano recitals anymore. Returning to the old "Music for Organ" series, I used to tape these using an old cassette tape recorder, starting I believe in 1972 or 1973. I still have boxes of the things somewhere. The recording quality may not be up to today's standards but I'd wager there's some fascinating stuff tucked away there.

 

 

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

 

 

I can go back to the 1960's, with boxes of 7" mono tapes.

 

The programmes include the opening recital by Francis Jackson at Blackburn Cathedral, many of the Geraint Jones BBC radio 3 continental historic organ series, Dupre, Germani, Heiller, John Betjamin's "Britain's Cathedrals and their music" and a whole galaxy of other stuff. Unfortunately, my old Ferrograph no longer works.

 

Then there are the 300 or so cassette-tapes, of anything from Wurlitzer to the Albert Hall.

 

Sadly, video had only just been invented, but I can bring back to mind TV programmes and plays which included the organ.

 

As for the TV dramatisation of A P Herbert's "Misleading Cases" with Alistair Simm playing the part of the judge, it seems that these classic episodes were lost by the BBC; an oversight of terrible magnitude if ever there was one.

 

MM

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I've given up on the beeb, and bought a Logitech Squeezebox - a 'wifi radio tuner' that plugs into my amp and allows access to several thousand internet radio stations, including Organlive (organ music 24x365, with NO presenters) Choirboys and Trebles (choral music 25x365 with NO presenters), Sacred Choral Music, (you get the idea) Choral Treasure etc.

 

Go and have a look at www.live365.com - and this is only a tiny fraction of what's out there on the net.

 

Thanks for mentioning this- I had vaguely heard of SlimServer, but downloading it and playing with a software-only squeezebox convinced me that I would find it very useful indeed! As a result of a quick trip to PC World today, I am also now a member of the Squeezebox owners' club- works very well, though I'm still trying to get the box to talk to Live365. As I write this, I have found Radio Notre Dame (Paris), and the Credo 3 live from the Evening Mass- just onto the Offertoire now, but I don't know who's playing tonight...

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At least you weren't listening to Songs of Praise then - I think I need a gizmo to get Radio Cochereau or whatever it is! Hexham Abbey organ sounded fine but the version of Make me a Channel was even more toe curling than the original despite the fine voiced young ladies in red dresses singing. Also - Aled Jones may appeal to a few of the over 70s but maybe he should stick to The Snowman on prime time TV. Who is all this supposed to be aimed at? Sorry folks - the normally stress free AJJ is in need of a beer!

 

AJJ

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At least you weren't listening to Songs of Praise then - I think I need a gizmo to get Radio Cochereau or whatever it is!

 

Unfortunately the cantor at the end was exhibiting- how shall I put it- doubtful tuning, and the Sortie (a Bach fugue- which I recognised but couldn't instantly assign a BWV number to without looking it up) was faded out within about 3 bars- BBC Morning Worship style.

 

Shame about Hexham- one of my favourite organs!

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a Bach fugue- which I recognised but couldn't instantly assign a BWV number to without looking it up

C major - BWV 547. Yes, shame on them for fading out!

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Aw come on BBC - justs how stupid do you think organists actually are!!!!!!! The last hymn - Jerusalem, introduced on the organ, with a nice shot of organist playing (or rather miming) on the Harrison at St Sepulchre's Holborn - only one problem here, the sound came from a toaster, and not a very good one at that (name withheld in case of libel suits). I'm sure the fact that a 32' came into play may have given the game away to some of you. The Harrison was in need of restoration, by what not at least be honest rather than doing such a silly thing as pretending a toaster is really a diminutive Harrison???????

 

By the way, and ideas as to who is to restore the organ, and when it will happen?

Hector

 

There's a reason for everything, Hector! The SofP on 'The Organ' was commissioned as an 'archive' programme (i.e. a very low-budget show where the music items have already been used for previous programmes, but are now being re-used with a completely new editorial). The St Seps Harrison broke down completely - without warning - literally the day before 'Jerusalem' was recorded (for an Songs of Praise on St Sepulchre's Church which transmitted in February last year), and a digital organ had to be brought in overnight or the whole enterprise would have had to be postponed at the cost of many thousands...all the camera positions and lighting had been rigged with the (immovable) Harrison in shot, and so the organist had to do the whole sound recording on the movable electronic; followed by playback 'vamping' on the Harrison, thereby avoiding disaster!

 

When filming for the Organs programme, the Harrison got a temporary repair, getting back on its feet just long enough for Huw to demonstrate a few stops and play a few bars of the Songs of Praise theme tune. So that's why the fact that the church also had an electronic organ was made clearly visible in one of the shots, and there was deliberately no reference to using the Harrison when introducing the hymns.

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