PipeChat Digest #5040 - Tuesday, December 28, 2004
RE: Organ Pieces
  by "Michael David" <michaelandmaggy@earthlink.net>
Leslie speakers
  by "First Christian Church of Casey, Illinois" <kzrev@rr1.net>
Re: Leslie speakers
  by <Gfc234@aol.com>
He that hath ears to hear ...very long (kind of interesting)
  by "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk>
Eddie Layton, Yankee Stadium organist passes
  by "Tim Bovard" <tmbovard@earthlink.net>
Re: Philosophy of organ learning (was Re: Organ Pieces)
  by "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk>
Re: Philosophy of organ learning
  by "Jarle Fagerheim" <jarle_fagerheim@yahoo.co.uk>
Re: Every Organist's Worst Nightmare
  by "Roy Kersey" <rkersey@tds.net>
Re: Every Organist's Worst Nightmare
  by "Robert Lind" <lindr@core.com>
Call for Ceaseless Prayers of Intercession
  by <ProOrgo53@aol.com>
Re: Tonal Fnishing
  by <Voicer40@aol.com>

(back) Subject: RE: Organ Pieces From: "Michael David" <michaelandmaggy@earthlink.net> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 13:56:13 -0600   What does your teacher recommend? Or, are doing doing this alone?   Michael   -----Original Message----- From: pipechat@pipechat.org [mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org]On Behalf Of Dominic Scullion Sent: Monday, December 27, 2004 9:02 AM To: pipechat@pipechat.org Subject: Organ Pieces     Dear all,       I have not been playing the organ for too long and would like to build = my repertoire.       Can anyone suggest any relatively simple or easy to learn organ pieces suitable for recessional voluntaries? Preferably by Bach but any composer would be great.       Regards.          
(back) Subject: Leslie speakers From: "First Christian Church of Casey, Illinois" <kzrev@rr1.net> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 15:09:53 -0600   Leslie speakers are still available new; the ones I've heard sound fine; the old ones sometimes appear on ebay, but with dealers it's hard to get a Leslie separate from the organ..dealers don't want to separate them.   Dennis Steckley   "Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened."--Dr. Seuss        
(back) Subject: Re: Leslie speakers From: <Gfc234@aol.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 16:18:18 EST     In a message dated 12/28/04 3:06:30 PM, kzrev@rr1.net writes:     > Leslie speakers are still available new; the ones I've heard sound fine; > the old ones sometimes appear on ebay, but with dealers it's hard to get > a Leslie separate from the organ..dealers don't want to separate them. > > Dennis Steckley > > "Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened."--Dr. Seuss >   If you're looking for a leslie-send me an email! I can put you in touch with a few people. gfc       Gregory Ceurvorst 1921 Sherman Ave. #GS Evanston, IL 60201 847.332.2788 home/fax 708.243.2549 mobile gfc234@aol.com gfc234@nextel.blackberry.net  
(back) Subject: He that hath ears to hear ...very long (kind of interesting) From: "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 14:29:42 -0800 (PST)   Hello,   Ooops! I seem to have upset not only Ross, but Dennis Steckley as well.....though I adore cats. I was, as usual, being a little provocative, but I was trying to make a serious point about acoustics and the involvement of amateurs.....myself and well-meaning clergymen included.   Now Ross made a statement to the effect that "acoustics are simple" and, knowing otherwise, I responded accordingly. Ross then responded to the effect that he would never sanction the use of modern building materials, which rather evaded the point!   Having had time to consider the matter more fully and do a little research, it seems to me that no-one could possibly build a modern building without the use of modern materials, because that is what the various fire and construction regulations require. Add to this the simple fact that modern building are predominantly built around steel space-frames, glass and concrete rather than brick, wood or carved stone, and it soon become clear that the world is changing....and not necessarily for the better.   How many people realise that the Royal Festival Hall, in London, was the first auditorium in the world ever to include "acoustic design" and "acoustic engineering?" (1951 design, 1954 completion?)   The RFH is both absorbent and non-absorbent, with an abundance of soft seats, but with hard walls. It is my guess that, as a consequence, only primary and secondary reflections are properly heard, and any diffusion of sound is killed very quickly by the furnishings. In stark contrast,medieval buildings diffuse sound very broadly, across a wide frequency range, from the roof, walls, solid flooring and hardwood furniture. This may go some way to explaining the fact, that when I have attended concerts or recitals at the RFH, I find myself listening as much to the walls as to the direct sound from the stage area. However, the electronic reverberation added has "improved" the hall to some extent; though such tinkering is hardly the stuff of natural acoustics, and obviously works within the limitations of digital processing, the whims and preferences of a sound engineer and the properties of loudspeakers.   In other words, when we go to hear the organ at the Royal Festival Hall with the digital reverberation switched on, we are listening, in effect, to a COMBINATION organ!! (Pipe samples being digitally re-processed, amplified and relayed)   How many times is this replicated across the world, in churches and especially in concert halls?   Whilst this thread began with discussion about Holy Name Cathedral in particular, the various responses seem to suggest that very few of us are truly aware of what is going on in the field of acoustic engineering. As this has a direct and sometimes devastating set of consequences for organ-builders, especially where instruments are installed in the unfinished shells of new concert halls or churches, perhaps the time has come to expect greater awareness of the the subject.   How's this for a frightening statement from a company specialising in the manufacture of acousticlly absorbent material?     Quote..."Reverberation time of less than 1 sec is required for music"     Or perhaps this quote from Joseph Wechsberg back in 1955:-     (Quote) From the evidence, it appears that no one can say for sure what the acoustical qualities of an auditorium will be until it is finished, furnished, heated, and filled with musicians, music, and listeners. And if the qualities turn out to be disappointing, it will very likely be expensive to correct them - if it can be done at all.=94 (Quote end) Since the above was written, acoustic engineering has become quite a major service industry. No longer do architects work alone or in isolation. Instead, they cover their backs by calling in "experts" who use computer-modelling and scale-models of proposed new buildings. They then use scaled-up frequencies and test the results in the scale-model; arriving at conclusions which, no matter how inaccurate or otherwise, form the basis of design philosophy.   This is clearly a worrying development, for art is at the mercy of scientific experts, who may be nothing of the sort.   Worse still, unless "acoustic experts" are completely aware of material science and the specific sound absorption characteristics of a particular piece of boarding, cladding or textile material, then their sole guide will be the crude general absorption coefficient of the material; assuming that this is known for certain.   Of course, the least problematic way of avoiding legal lawsuits is to make a new building absolutely "dead" and "flat", then add electronic reverberation, which can be fiddled with by another "expert".....it's called "passing the buck" or "a damage limitation exercise"........and it works!   Of course, such an approach leads to the mere simulation of an acoustic, which by the very nature of the beast, is largely synthetic, no matter how successful it may be.   In recent years, there has been the development of "smart" auditoria, where moveable panels, drapes and louvres are utilised. Sometimes, not only do panels move, but whole ceiling sections are raised or lowered, as at the new Birmingham Symphony Hall in the UK. In some recent buildings, "natural" resonance has been achieved by the introduction of "resonance chambers," which can be opened or blanked off as necessary. Again, this is a feature of the Birmingham Symphony Hall; universally acclaimed as having a magnificent (variable) acoustic.   The Birmingham venue has been designed by the best, and built to high standards, but sadly, this is not always the case with other buildings around the world. For every successful church or hall acoustic, there must be a hundred failures.   I suspect that the reason for this is both the geometry of "traditional" buildings such as ampitheatre-style halls, classical style churches and stone-vaulted cathedrals, and also, the use of the traditional materials suggested by Ross, which we rightly uphold as the benchmark for organ and choral music.   If we look at the absorption coefficients of these materials, we can see why these materials work well.   Assuming that complete reflection of sound is 0.00, and complete absorption is 1.0, stone, concrete and marble fall into the negligable range of 0.01 to 0.02, with little change in absorption characteristics across the entire audible frequency range.   Wooden flooring on a solid base, fares almost as well. at 0.04 in the lowest frequency ranges, and only 0.07 in the high frequency ranges at 4 Khz and above.   Solid wood furnishing fare almost as well, so in old cathedrals and concert halls, where traditional materials have been used exclusively, the chances of a lively (but not necessarily coherent acoustic) is very high.......which we all knew anyway!   Even where a building does not have enormous resonance, the use of traditional building and furnishing materials more or less guarantees a uniform acoustic across the entire frequency range, and diffuses sound in a even way, so that even a building without great reverberation can support good musical sound. I can think of many wonderful old Methodist Chapels, which had little extended reverberation, but in which music nevertheless had a wonderful warmth and eveness.   The moment modern building materials are introduced without due regard to acoustic properties, we are in deep trouble!   Carpets are bad enough; absorbing higher frequencies quite quickly, but leaving bass frequencies intact. The thicker the carpet (and importantly, any underlay) the more pronounced the effect.   But carpet is nothing as compared to suspended ceilings, fibre-board, flame retardent boards, acoustic tiling and special laminates used by many builders and specified by architects for all sorts of reasons; including the requirements of building regulations, soundproofing and firewalls etc.   Even plywood; normally fine when mounted to a solid surface, takes on killer qualities when it is mounted on frames with large volumes of air behind it. In this case, we can say goodbye to the bass frequencies, when the absorption coefficient rises to 0.4 at the lower end of the musical scale, but leaves the higher frequencies more or less intact.   Once we get to modern fibre-board with fibreglass or cellulose included in them, sound just vanishes almost instantly.   So in this day and age of metal-frame structures, where floors are relatively flexible, walls are made of fibre-boards or fire-retardent plaster-board, and ceilings are suspended on metal or wooden frames, we can wave goodbye to successful music unless we resort to electronic acoustics. Perhaps THIS is the reason why digital organs often sound quite acceptable in the lousiest of rooms!   However, there is ANOTHER factor which, I believe, may go some way towards explaining what I have instinctively heard in some concert halls; and it has to do with upholstered seating and real, live people in the building.   Although there are obvious differences between seats made of different materials or with different amounts of upholstered padding, it would seem that, like humans, they absorb a LOT of sound, but more particularly, they absorb sound in the middle frequencies more than any other. Consequently, with maybe 1,000 seats plus, an auditorium is completely unbalanced musically as compared to the classic gothic cathedral.   THIS, I feel sure, is what I have heard!   Acousticians compensate for this by using hard, reflective surfaces for the walls and ceilings; often including diffusive surface materials to spread the sound as best they can. Fine, except that with the furnishing and audience gobbling up the critical middle frequencies, we are left with bass frequencies and very brittle, short-wave high frequencies......IN FACT, THE CLASSIC BAROQUE HOLE IN THE MIDDLE EFFECT.   So why, I wonder, is a fine new concert hall such as the Birmingham Symphony so successful?   The University of Salford, here in the UK, provide us with a few clues, as follows:-   The Birmingham hall is shaped like a "shoe-box" and recent scientific research suggests that this is the ideal design for a concert hall. During a performance some of the sound from the orchestra - the "direct sound" - travels directly to the listener, while the rest bounces off the ceilings and the walls. So-called "early reflections" reach the audience a few tenths of a second after the direct sound. These reinforce the direct sound and makes the source of the sound seem wider. The audience then picks up further strong reflections from the side walls. These "late lateral reflections" give listeners the impression of being surrounded by the sound. Tests have shown that the best sound quality is found in halls in which both the early and late reflections are strong - and this is what happens in box-shaped halls such as Birmingham and other world-famous venues such as the Musikvereinsaal in Vienna and the Boston Symphony Hall in the US. ("(c) University of Salford, www.acoustics.salford.ac.uk")       The Birmingham Symnphony Hall is a hall with a lot of plush seats which hold a lot of people, yet music sounds glorius. (Though it sounds even better half empty!)   The answer has to be a combination of factors; not least is the shoe-box shape of the building, with rounded apsoidal sections at each end. However, it is surely the large acoustic chambers, which lead off from the hall itself, which gather up the warm, middle frequencies and allow them to bloom before they pass back into the hall. Add to this reflective side walls and gallery surfaces, the solid ceiling contruction, with its variable, moveable sounding board (weighing 35 tonnes!) above the orchestra/choir area, and we have something very special indeed.   A few words of wisdom from the late E.Power-Biggs:-   =93An organist will take all the reverberation time he is given, and then ask for a bit more, for ample reverberation is part of organ music itself. Many of Bach=92s organ works are designed actually to exploit reverberation. Consider the pause that follows the ornamentedproclamation that opens the famous Toccata in D minor. Obviously this is for the enjoyment of the notes as they remain suspended in the air=94   It may have taken time to get there, but it seems that, contrary to what I once believed, at least some "experts" are exactly that!!   So in conclusion, if organ-builders are faced with a dead acoustic, they should not merely increase the amplitude of the lowest frequency sounds of the instrument, they should also attempt to replace the middle 8ft and 4ft tones which the building has stolen.   I would conclude that T C Lewis stumbled upon this quite by accident, for in adopting the big scales of Schulze, and then tempering the voicing of the highest notes, he effectively happened upon a sound which works unusually well in even relatively dead buildings, and yet, his organs have a clarity and vitality which has seldom been matched.   It also explains, incidentally, why Wurlitzer and Compton organs work in rotten acoustics, because they have plenty of sheer umph (!) and plenty of body.   What goes around, comes around!   If anyone should wish to read about the Salford University acoustics work, I would recommend the following URL:- www.acoustics.salford.ac.uk   Will someone with lots of money, please send me a T C Lewis copy, but with tracker action and werkprinzip layout?   On second thoughts, that's more or less exactly what Kenneth Jones & Associates have been doing here in the UK!!   Regards,   Colin Mitchell UK                                           __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? 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(back) Subject: Eddie Layton, Yankee Stadium organist passes From: "Tim Bovard" <tmbovard@earthlink.net> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 17:29:40 -0600   December 27, 2004 Longtime Yankee Stadium Organist Dies By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS   Filed at 2:59 p.m. ET   NEW YORK (AP) -- Eddie Layton, the Yankee Stadium organist and ballpark fixture for more than 35 years, has died after a brief illness.   Layton died Sunday, the New York Yankees said. The team did not know his = age.   Layton joined the team in 1967 when the club began using organ music at Yankee Stadium and played until his retirement after the 2003 season.   Tucked away in a booth on the press box level, Layton entertained fans for decades, often by hitting just a few notes. He'd reward outstanding plays with a brief rendition of ``Yankee Doodle Dandy'' and would sound a short trill after high-and-inside pitches.   ``Eddie Layton was a treasured member of the Yankee family and, as a = gifted musician, he made Yankee Stadium a happier place,'' owner George Steinbrenner said. ``Eddie was a dear friend who will be missed by all who come to Yankee Stadium.''   Layton also performed as the organist for the New York Knicks and Rangers for 18 years. He wrote scores for soap operas, played at Radio City Music Hall and was a member of the New York Sports Hall of Fame.   [Eddie was a Hammond Organ touring artist, and recorded many albums on the B-3]    
(back) Subject: Re: Philosophy of organ learning (was Re: Organ Pieces) From: "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 15:40:52 -0800 (PST)   Hello,   I can symapthise with both Jarle and Greg; both have valid points to make.   Jarle sounds exactly the same as I was at his age (there's no hope for you Jarle!), often quite happy to let rip with imagination in a blur of wrong notes, but it kept my interest going when dedicated practise would have killed it.   Greg, on the other hand, suggests the "correct" was of doing things, and he is, of course, absolutely right.   In a way, both of them are right, for we must all learn in ways which are the best for us. I'm sure that Jarle will smile when I say, that at the tender age of 14, I could play bits of ALL the big works very, very well!   However, social anthropolgy apart, there is a serious point to be made about learning. Even if we mentally "switch off" and ramble through awkward bits of music, we do actually learn a sort of motor response, which often returns to haunt us later on. So it isn't just a matter of learning the difficult bits at a later stage, for we also have to UNLEARN the way we played it wrongly; thus making the task twice as difficult.   At the moment, I am re-learning the Mozart K608, and I have been correcting some details of fingering, where I have had a few problems with trills and phrasing. I now find that there are better ways of doing certain things, but I have really struggled to drop the previous fingering and replace it with the improved version.   So Greg is quite right.....it is important to work things out carefully and correctly, for it saves a lot of time eventually.   That said, I've just been rambling through some Reger for the sheer fun of hearing the noise it makes!!   Regards,   Colin Mitchell UK     ----------------------------   > > In a message dated 12/27/04 4:59:28 PM, > jarle_fagerheim@yahoo.co.uk writes: > > > > That may work, and definitely has worked, well for > many. However, I > > wouldn't be able to stand it a day. I keep > rewarding myself all the > > time, playing music I really can't play, > practising on full organ if I > > feel like it, simply having fun.     __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Mail - now with 250MB free storage. Learn more. http://info.mail.yahoo.com/mail_250  
(back) Subject: Re: Philosophy of organ learning From: "Jarle Fagerheim" <jarle_fagerheim@yahoo.co.uk> Date: Wed, 29 Dec 2004 01:12:11 +0100   I can't say I really disagree with you, Colin!   My "philosophy" eventually comes down to one core point; *enthusiasm*. I think I'm not terribly wrong in claiming that enthusiastic practise is many times as effective as practising just because "somebody" tells you = to.   I've been growing up in a musically inclined family, my mother is a professional organist and my father an excellent amateur guitarist. None of them have _ever_ instructed me to sit down and practise. Still, I've been practising as good as every day, generally a couple of hours each, for the last three years. The _only_ reason being that I find it the most joyful thing to do on earth. Yes, I know my head isn't really properly assembled, but I've got to have a point!   Inn all joyfulness, Jarle   http://jarle.moo.no  
(back) Subject: Re: Every Organist's Worst Nightmare From: "Roy Kersey" <rkersey@tds.net> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 20:00:42 -0500   Dear Margo and All, Margo wrote:   <<one little boy, just about as tall as the lowest manual, was standing just at the end of the bench watching everything. At = the very instant I got to the last note, he reach up and pushed cancel. >>   Am I the only grouch here, or are there others who would suggest pushing a = "general cancel" on this little boy? At the very least, he (and the = others, too) needs to keep his distance from the console in the future, if = he can't behave, which he's proved he can't. My thinking is that if you = are old enough to be away from your parents and old enough to reach the = manual, you are old enough to know "don't touch." I am all for children's curiousity about the organ being gratified, = but not when they have no manners and no impulse control. Unfortunately = this kind of thing is frequently momentarily funny, which temporarily = obscures how rude it is. And my day job is . . . child psychologist, so = for once I am offering an expert opinion. Best Regards, Roy Kersey Organ Enthusiast and Amateur Trumpeter    
(back) Subject: Re: Every Organist's Worst Nightmare From: "Robert Lind" <lindr@core.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 19:25:47 -0600   Well, I wish that you, Roy, as a child psychologist, might tell us how = best to handle such a situation so that we don't turn the kid off from organ music by coming on too strong. I'd be rather relieved if I were to laugh = it up in a situation such as this. My immediate reaction, I think, would be = to be quite upset, and I'd undoubtedly be sorry afterward. What is a reasoned response that allows one to laugh it up at the outset but then be able to deal with the "problem" side of this as well? Bob Lind   ----- Original Message ----- From: Roy Kersey <rkersey@tds.net> To: PipeChat <pipechat@pipechat.org> Sent: Tuesday, December 28, 2004 7:00 PM Subject: Re: Every Organist's Worst Nightmare     > Dear Margo and All, > Margo wrote: > > <<one little boy, just about as tall as the lowest > manual, was standing just at the end of the bench watching everything. = At the very instant I got to the last note, he reach up and pushed cancel. >> > > Am I the only grouch here, or are there others who would suggest pushing = a "general cancel" on this little boy? At the very least, he (and the = others, too) needs to keep his distance from the console in the future, if he = can't behave, which he's proved he can't. My thinking is that if you are old enough to be away from your parents and old enough to reach the manual, = you are old enough to know "don't touch." > I am all for children's curiousity about the organ being gratified, but not when they have no manners and no impulse control. Unfortunately this kind of thing is frequently momentarily funny, which temporarily obscures how rude it is. And my day job is . . . child psychologist, so = for once I am offering an expert opinion. > Best Regards, > Roy Kersey    
(back) Subject: Call for Ceaseless Prayers of Intercession From: <ProOrgo53@aol.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 21:18:28 EST   We, as acquainted church musicians, organists, choir directors, solo singers, ministers of word and sacrament are a family. As most of us know, by now, the magnitude of destruction and suffering of =   countless human beings by Sunday's earthquake and resulting tsunami is unprecedented in world history. I beg your pardon for stepping to "the lectern" of this forum, but feel I =   must. For the love of GOD and the sake of all whose lives have either been lost = or forever altered by this horrific disaster, let us, as a united family, = join in unprecedented, frequent (if not unceasing) acts of personal and = corporate prayer, fasting, and participation in efforts of relief. We simply cannot continue, as though nothing unusual has happened on = planet Earth, belaboring in discussions about carpeting, organists' worst nightmares, acoustic preferences, etc. May GOD so lead us, one and all. Dale G. Rider Independence, MO USA  
(back) Subject: Re: Tonal Fnishing From: <Voicer40@aol.com> Date: Tue, 28 Dec 2004 21:22:28 -0500   Want a real scream?   Several years ago, I went with a well known tonal director of a well known = American Builder to finish a 22-rank organ.   We left the factory on a Monday, flew about 500 miles, rented a car, and = spent the rest of the day driving to the church.   On Tuesday, we arrived at the church and found that the installation crew = had simply placed the pipes on the chests and hadn't even bothered to tune = them, and that the church had been using the organ that way for about = three months. Nobody knew that anything was wrong.   We began Tuesday by tuning the organ which took us until Wednesday = evening.   On Thursday,we made an 8' wooden flute in the choir louder. That was the = only thing changed.   This man insisted that no one be allowed in the church during "tonal = finishing", but in reality liked to show off to groups. I just tapped two = tools together without touching the pipes, and he responded by saying "too = much!", or "Not enough!". I didn't know it, but the pastor of the church = was behind me watching.   That evening (Thursday), we were at dinner, and he looked at me and said, = "You are the only voicer I have ever worked with who could finish an organ = without getting it out of tune."   After spitting tea halfway across the restaurant, I nearly fell out of my = chair.   If I were to tell you who that "Tonal Director" was, you would fall out of = yours.   Friday morning, we were gone.   D. Keith Morgan