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Davidb

Things That Really Annoy You

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............and what about the people who come and use a rubber, leaving all the bits cascading down the keyboards?

 

Best wishes,

Nigel

 

I remember at the opening of a very important instrument the noted recitalist had spent his rehearsal time rubbing out and writing all over his music while sitting at the console.

 

At the evening recital we had a key sticking and I was called out of the congregation to correct it. The fault was a shred of the rubber had jammed between two of the keys which I quickly removed - fault cured.

 

Regrettably the organist laughed it of with a "organs do take a little time to settle down" to the audience i.e. blame the organ builder!

 

FF

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Visiting clergy, who are apparently unable to grasp the concept of a Mass followed shortly by Choral Matins, and preach for something in excess of twenty-two minutes. Most of it tends to be repetitive - or else they wish to be invited back, so they feel that they need to 'entertain' the congregation, which is then subject to a flood of stories, only some of which are remotely amusing. This does, in addition, mean that coffee-time between the two services is greatly reduced - and that Matins starts up to twelve minutes late, which is extremely unfortunate, particularly in the winter.

 

I also agree regarding rubbers and moving (or lowering) the bench. In the case of the latter, I have neglected to mention to my (fairly new) boss that the organ bench is adjustable. I keep the piston system locked and will only unlock it for bona fide players who are willing to sign an affidavit declaring that, if they should alter settings on any channel other than that which has been made available for them - either accidentally or by design - then they will be fined the contents of their bank accounts, their close relatives will be incarcerated in the Lubyanka prison and they will be reduced to playing a Casson 'Positive' organ for the rest of their natural days.

 

Harsh? Maybe, but it has solved the problem....

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Guest Andrew Butler
Visiting clergy, who are apparently unable to grasp the concept of a Mass followed shortly by Choral Matins, and preach for something in excess of twenty-two minutes. Most of it tends to be repetitive - or else they wish to be invited back, so they feel that they need to 'entertain' the congregation, which is then subject to a flood of stories, only some of which are remotely amusing. This does, in addition, mean that coffee-time between the two services is greatly reduced - and that Matins starts up to twelve minutes late, which is extremely unfortunate, particularly in the winter.

 

I also agree regarding rubbers and moving (or lowering) the bench. In the case of the latter, I have neglected to mention to my (fairly new) boss that the organ bench is adjustable. I keep the piston system locked and will only unlock it for bona fide players who are willing to sign an affidavit declaring that, if they should alter settings on any channel other than that which has been made available for them - either accidentally or by design - then they will be fined the contents of their bank accounts, their close relatives will be incarcerated in the Lubyanka prison and they will be reduced to playing a Casson 'Positive' organ for the rest of their natural days.

 

Harsh? Maybe, but it has solved the problem....

 

 

I can think of far worse things to play than a Casson Positive..... :blink:

 

I've seen "the best organist in the district" leave notes on 2 organs to the effect that "Voix Celeste not working below ten C".

 

By whose estimation was s/he "the best organist in the district"?

 

A part-time bearer for the local undertakers. (Honest!) :P

 

PS - I omitted to mention in my original post that the said 'Celestes wre TC stops, but that will be obvious to all except the best organists. :mellow:

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I can think of far worse things to play than a Casson Positive..... :blink:

 

Me too - I played one off and on for 3 years - treated with care (and liberal use of the octave coupler) it didn't produce too bad a sound.

 

http://npor.emma.cam.ac.uk/cgi-bin/Rsearch...ec_index=T00488

 

(Though on the survey the Principal Bass should read 4')

 

AJJ

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Guilty as charged, I'm afraid. After one Saturday night practice session I left Solo-Ch drawn. The following morning the assistant organist played the first voluntary, beginning pianissimo on the choir, but with the Solo Tuba drawn in preparation for the climax. Those who know the Halifax tuba will understand what a shock this came as to her and the congo.

 

Regarding the tuner's book, it's probably best to hide it and leave another notebook for people to scribble in. In fairness, people practising do manage to diagnose obscure faults. We had one recently where there was a cipher, but it turned out it only occurred when you drew both Sw-Gt and Sw-Ch then played the particular note on the Ch or Sw. The tuner would never have found that.

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Guest delvin146
Unfortunately, Vox, some hymnals do print that passing note!

 

Other gripes: The elongated "O" in "We Three Kings" (probably the most historically inaccurate carol ever written; I was told off by a chorister for not including it for Epiphany but I just said that I didn't like it).

 

As to screaming babies, we had not one but three yesterday, just as we started the communion anthem "Ave Verum" (Elgar). I have now started to petition the Vatican to ensure the immediate and surely long overdue canonisation of King Herod.

 

Salve, omnes

 

Peter

 

I had to chuckle when I read your final paragraph. I know of one RC priest who would blow a gasket if you try to do anything to do with Mary during communion. The mental image I have is guite humerous. Apparently it's not liturgically correct as the emphasis should be on Jesus at that point - appearently. :blink:

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I had to chuckle when I read your final paragraph. I know of one RC priest who would blow a gasket if you try to do anything to do with Mary during communion. The mental image I have is guite humerous. Apparently it's not liturgically correct as the emphasis should be on Jesus at that point - appearently. :)

Surely "Ave Verum Corpus", whilst making reference to being "born of the Virgin Mary", is entirely about the Body (and passion) of Christ and would be considered a very fitting communion text in both Anglican and RC circles. The three settings which I guess are in most common UK use - Byrd, Mozart and Elgar - all have catholic composers.

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Guilty as charged, I'm afraid. After one Saturday night practice session I left Solo-Ch drawn. The following morning the assistant organist played the first voluntary, beginning pianissimo on the choir, but with the Solo Tuba drawn in preparation for the climax. Those who know the Halifax tuba will understand what a shock this came as to her and the congo.

Blimey. It's so loud you can even hear it from the country formerly known as Zaire?

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Regarding the tuner's book, it's probably best to hide it and leave another notebook for people to scribble in.

 

 

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

 

 

Ah yes! I recall a "Tuning Book" back in the days when I held keys for the organ-tuner.

 

In the book, in large red letters, was written by (presumably) a visiting organist:-

 

"This organ is the biggest load of ***** I have ever played upon"

 

I showed this to the tuner, who wrote underneath in blue:-

 

"Think yourself lucky; you don't have to crawl around in it!"

 

B)

 

MM

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

Ah yes! I recall a "Tuning Book" back in the days when I held keys for the organ-tuner.

 

In the book, in large red letters, was written by (presumably) a visiting organist:-

 

"This organ is the biggest load of ***** I have ever played upon"

 

I showed this to the tuner, who wrote underneath in blue:-

 

"Think yourself lucky; you don't have to crawl around in it!"

 

B)

 

MM

 

 

Reginald Foort FRCO once left a note in a tuning book which simply read, "Wot a bleeder!" :)

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I can think of far worse things to play than a Casson Positive..... B)

 

All things are relative, Andrew.... Personally, I would hate the idea.

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In the book, in large red letters, was written by (presumably) a visiting organist:-

 

"This organ is the biggest load of ***** I have ever played upon"

 

It might not have been a visitor, of course. It could have been an early draft of a letter from the titulaire to the PCC.

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One thing that really annoys me is the tiresome bickering between two contributors to this board about the Alexandra Palace organ. I have no doubt they both feel passionately about this instrument, but I wish they would put their toys back in the pram and join us in more productive and interesting discussions about the organ and its music.

 

:unsure: JC

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Guest Andrew Butler

People who moan about "Traditional" hymns, saying "can we have something with a bit of "go?"" So I put on at this evening's Mass (sorry...) "Shine Jesus, shine" (Transfiguration Gospel this w/e)

 

So what do they do? IRON OUT THE SYNCOPATIONS!!!!!!!!!!

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People who moan about "Traditional" hymns, saying "can we have something with a bit of "go?"" So I put on at this evening's Mass (sorry...) "Shine Jesus, shine" (Transfiguration Gospel this w/e)

 

So what do they do? IRON OUT THE SYNCOPATIONS!!!!!!!!!!

 

 

I've always taken 'something wiht a bit of go' to mean something that has a bit of fight to it - George Duffields Stand up Stand up for Jesus to Morning Light for example. It has considerably mroe life than, say , forty days and forty dreary nights

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Guest Lee Blick
People who moan about "Traditional" hymns, saying "can we have something with a bit of "go?"" So I put on at this evening's Mass (sorry...) "Shine Jesus, shine" (Transfiguration Gospel this w/e)

 

So what do they do? IRON OUT THE SYNCOPATIONS!!!!!!!!!!

 

I think in that case it is up to the organist or pianist/keyboard player to give the rythmic drive. Sometimes it would not hurt to go through it before the service with the congregation and emphasis the importance of the syncopation.

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I've always taken 'something wiht a bit of go' to mean something that has a bit of fight to it - George Duffields Stand up Stand up for Jesus to Morning Light for example. It has considerably mroe life than, say , forty days and forty dreary nights

 

 

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

 

Whic reminds me of misprint, in which the words of a certain well-known hymn were changed to:-

 

"Stand up! Stand up, TO Jesus"

 

It did tend to alter the meaning a little.

 

:unsure:

 

MM

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Guest Andrew Butler
I think in that case it is up to the organist or pianist/keyboard player to give the rythmic drive. Sometimes it would not hurt to go through it before the service with the congregation and emphasis the importance of the syncopation.

 

I'm sorry, but I find that very patronizing Lee. Especially seeing as you were good enough to support me publicly the last time my musical integrity was called into question :unsure: (http://web16713.vs.netbenefit.co.uk/discussion/index.php?showtopic=639)

 

God knows, I tried with the rhythmic drive! And I have a PP who does not like pre-Mass rehearsals. If you can do any better in my situation, please feel free to come and have a go. There are several brick walls against which to bang one's head afterwards.

 

Think I'll start a club with sjf :)

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Guest Cynic

Things that annoy me? Oh dear, how long have you got?

 

Three spring to mind:

1. Clergy saying that they don't mind if things aren't done quite right. The worrying thing is they're quite correct saying this, in that they really don't mind at all, unfortunately they don't seem to care either!

 

2. People who say that church musicians ought to do the job for the love of it. Love can take one just so far! My preferred retort is to quote Jesus Christ himself:

'The labourer is worthy of his hire' [Luke 10 verse 7] and leave it at that.

 

3. People who say, aren't you lucky? Yes, I suppose so.....but there has been a certain investment of time and effort over whatever skill they are jealous of.

 

 

 

Do any of these strike a chord anywhere?

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God knows, I tried with the rhythmic drive!
I can well imagine. Congregations are invariably as thick as two short planks when it comes to following the organist. Once they have their head of steam, off they go in their own sweet ways (invariably several of them) and nothing short of a power cut is going to stop them if they can help it. You can dictate their speed. Sometimes you may be able to influence their dynamics a bit. But anything else - forget it. You can meticulously observe every comma - or lack thereof - you can point the rhythms as obviously as a fist on the nose, but you'll be flogging a dead horse. A certain percentage of the unwashed down the nave will be too wrapped up in a miasma of piety even to notice the ground opening under their feet; most of the rest are probably enjoying a jolly good sing without giving a cuss about any other niceties. Even if they do notice what you're doing they'll just think, "Oh look, he's doing his own thing. How quaint!" or something along those lines. It simply doesn't seem to occur them that the poor old grinder up in the chancel is setting them an exemplar to follow.

 

I can understand the priest not liking pre-mass rehearsals, though it's a pity if he won't countenance them even once in a while. But even with pre-service rehearsals you're apt to find a few of the "We've done it t'other way for the last 20 years and I'm not changing now!" brigade.

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Guest Lee Blick
I'm sorry, but I find that very patronizing Lee. Especially seeing as you were good enough to support me publicly the last time my musical integrity was called into question :rolleyes: (http://web16713.vs.netbenefit.co.uk/discussion/index.php?showtopic=639)

 

God knows, I tried with the rhythmic drive! And I have a PP who does not like pre-Mass rehearsals. If you can do any better in my situation, please feel free to come and have a go. There are several brick walls against which to bang one's head afterwards.

 

Think I'll start a club with sjf :huh:

 

I was not patronising you, it wasn't supposed to be a criticism. I know how difficult it is to get something like that across to people on the organ. I was just saying it is easier to point the syncopation out to the congregation and to rehearse it. I was not cricitising your organ playing. :o

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Guest Andrew Butler
I was not patronising you, it wasn't supposed to be a criticism. I know how difficult it is to get something like that across to people on the organ. I was just saying it is easier to point the syncopation out to the congregation and to rehearse it. I was not cricitising your organ playing. For goodness sake! :huh:

 

Mmm....... maybe not intended as a personal criticism, but I would not have perceived it as such had you just mentioned the bit about pointing it out to the congregation. It came across as patronizing, and I will need a lot of convincing to the contrary.

 

Thanks for the private messages of support I have received! :rolleyes:

 

PS - Err, has the post from which I quoted been edited since ??

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I think in that case it is up to the organist or pianist/keyboard player to give the rythmic drive. Sometimes it would not hurt to go through it before the service with the congregation and emphasis the importance of the syncopation.

 

Even then, there is no guarantee of success. I can think of instances in which a congregation has completely ignored clear organ playing (and registration) and ploughed on regardless of the help, doing what they have always done.

 

Congregational practices? Ours just get offended. When this has been tried, afterwards we get comments such as "Hmph - we did not come here to be lectured, or treated like school children"....

 

One instance, our congregation regularly ignore my chamade in octaves (plus the full Swell and most of Positive foundations) playing the last line of Abbots Leigh. In extreme irritation, I once played the last line on the tutti, in double octaves hands and feet.

 

The result?

 

The buggers still got it wrong.

 

Things that annoy me? Oh dear, how long have you got?

 

Three spring to mind:

1. Clergy saying that they don't mind if things aren't done quite right. The worrying thing is they're quite correct saying this, in that they really don't mind at all, unfortunately they don't seem to care either!

 

2. People who say that church musicians ought to do the job for the love of it. Love can take one just so far! My preferred retort is to quote Jesus Christ himself:

'The labourer is worthy of his hire' [Luke 10 verse 7] and leave it at that.

 

3. People who say, aren't you lucky? Yes, I suppose so.....but there has been a certain investment of time and effort over whatever skill they are jealous of.

Do any of these strike a chord anywhere?

 

Indubitably so, Paul.

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Guest Andrew Butler

I have no Chamades or a Positive, but I have resorted to the full organ in octaves treatment in Abbots Leigh. No success!

 

I have a similar problem in the 3rd line of Nicaea.

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Guest Cynic
I have no Chamades or a Positive, but I have resorted to the full organ in octaves treatment in Abbots Leigh. No success!

 

I have a similar problem in the 3rd line of Nicaea.

 

 

I think in both these cases that the populus have safely got hold of their own version and refuse to re-learn it simply because their version is easier to sing.

 

The one that gets me because it is not easier is where some of the congregation now poach what used to be the Willcocks descant in 'The First Nowell'*.

 

* Thinks: A word-processor is useless at a time like this...

 

you know....

 

NO(w)-ELL, NO(w)-ELL (sung normally)

NO(w) E L L L L!! (each L running further up the scale) finishing on a painful F sharp with tone (at best) worthy of a football-terrace.

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