PipeChat Digest #4939 - Sunday, November 28, 2004
 
Re: the simulator
  by "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk>
OHS European Organ Tour to England 2005
  by "William T. Van Pelt" <wvanpelt@erols.com>
Harmonium: The History of the Reed Organ and its Makers
  by "Paul R. Swank" <prswank@surfbest.net>
Re: A multi facited question
  by <RonSeverin@aol.com>
Re: this organ
  by "John Foss" <harkat@kat.forthnet.gr>
Re: the simulator
  by "John L. Speller" <jlspeller@swbell.net>
Re: A multi facited question
  by "John L. Speller" <jlspeller@swbell.net>
Re: A multi facited question
  by "Jim McFarland" <mcfarland6@juno.com>
Re: Thriving on Misinformation, working on ending it.
  by "David Scribner" <david@blackiris.com>
Re: this organ
  by <RonSeverin@aol.com>
Re: Thriving on Misinformation, working on ending it.
  by "David Scribner" <david@blackiris.com>
A Little Humor at church this morning
  by "LBoekeloo" <lboekeloo@triton.net>
RE: this organ
  by "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz>
Re: this organ
  by <RonSeverin@aol.com>
RE: this organ
  by "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk>
 

(back) Subject: Re: the simulator From: "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 04:52:29 -0800 (PST)   Hello,   I think money is probably the deciding factor in any project; pipe or electronic. You get what you pay for.   The very best electronic organs are now "knocking at the door" so-to-speak, but they are certainly not cheap. Perhaps we should regard them as "less expensive."   For the majority of us, who do not own vast acerage of prime peanut growing land, an electronic is something we have in the home for practise purposes; where our imaginations can circumnavigate the obvious deficiences.   That said, the progress of electronic instruments has been phenomenal in the past 25 years, and with another 25 years, we may ALL be able to enjoy something which is remarkably "authentic" in our own living spaces.   Interestingly, many of the high-end electronic installations make a fairly good job of imitating the typical symphonic instrument, but I have yet to hear one which even comes close to the peerless majesty of the best authentic baroque organs, or the arresting "canned lightning" sound of a Schulze; both of which are very "Principal chorus" biased.   Perhaps John has a point.   Does anyone KNOW why it is almost always the Principal/Diapason sounds which let the electronic side down; especially with the cheaper products.   Please, let's not enter into the endless round of pipes v. electronic......I just want to know WHY the Principal/Diapason chorus causes such problems, when everything else seems to sound quite acceptable.   Regards,   Colin Mitchell UK   PS: Note that I haven't used the DCO words, Ross!     --- John Foss <harkat@kat.forthnet.gr> wrote:   .........Some stops seems > to work OK on electronics....... but not Diapasons > or Principals nor 16 > pedal Bourdons. I'm not quite sure why......     __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? The all-new My Yahoo! - What will yours do? http://my.yahoo.com  
(back) Subject: OHS European Organ Tour to England 2005 From: "William T. Van Pelt" <wvanpelt@erols.com> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 08:31:13 -0500   The 2005 OHS European Organ Tour will be conducted in SOUTHWEST ENGLAND, August 11-21 with the leadership of Stephen Bicknell and Bruce Stevens. The duration of the tour is 11 days, 12 nights, and the registration fee is $2,600. The anticipated registration maximum is 40 people, and nine are already registered, so we expect a sell out as we have for the past twelve tours. Thus, please consider registering early if you wish to join us. For more information, request a brochure via e-mail from EuroTour@organsociety.org. It can be sent by return e-mail.   <>The tour begins in exquisite Salisbury, where we'll stay for eight nights. From there we'll make day trips to visit historic and meritorious organs in five cathedrals, abbeys, priories, parish churches, castles, town halls, and schools. Following our Salisbury sojourn, we'll move on to stays in Almondsbury (near Bristol) and in Cheltenham. Throughout, we'll see and play significant organs of all sizes, often newly restored, ranging in age from the mid 18th century to 2005. The legendary work of Snetzler, Davis, Gray & Davison, Michell & Thynne, Hill, Willis, Harrison & Harrison, Hill Norman & Beard, and J.W. Walker will be experienced, as will artistic new work by Nicholson, Mander, and Kenneth Tickell. <>During our 1- to 1=BD-hour visit to each organ, we'll first hear a short, comprehensive demonstration that uses appropriate music to show characteristic registrations. Participants may then play and/or examine the insides of the organs, when permitted. A booklet with essential information about each organ will be provided to each participant at the beginning of the tour. Photo and recording opportunities will abound. As time permits, other sights complementary to our organ visits will be included in order to make the tour as instructive, varied, and enjoyable as possible.   Bill    
(back) Subject: Harmonium: The History of the Reed Organ and its Makers From: "Paul R. Swank" <prswank@surfbest.net> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 10:19:16 -0500   Hi Gang,   Some conversation has been on the list of late about the differences between American reed organs and the European harmonium. I have = advertised a rare out-of-print book on eBay, which is : "Harmonium: the History of = the Reed Organ and its Makers", by Arthur W. J. G. Ord-Hume.   Copies of this book in used condition are advertised on Amazon at $79.00. My copy is new old stock, and in perfect condition.   You can see it as item # 3765494601 at eBay, starting at $60.00. Payment can be by postal money order, or you can pay through a credit card through =   Paypal.   Some magnificent drawings and photos in the book.   Thanks for taking the time to hear about it,   Paul R. Swank Baltimore, MD    
(back) Subject: Re: A multi facited question From: <RonSeverin@aol.com> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 13:02:38 EST   Silberman used contiguous halfstops splitting ranks between treble and bass. even on rather large three manual organs. This made sense to me in the fact that accompnimental choices were greatly increased on a single manual. The split was between b and middle C. On small American examples the stops were split 12 pipes bass and 44 to 49 pipes treble. This was done on 16' voices with split knobs. and 8' voices with two separate knobs. The only reason in my mind would be to keep space for pipes to a minimum and reuse common basses for more than one stop. One of the strangest at least to me was to provide the Oboe 8' from tenor C 49 which made no sense or split 12 Basson and 49 Oboe. I would like to explore opinions form both sides of the aisle Builders and organists as to why you think this technique was considered and used. Could offset chests be the culprit? This has always intrigued me and the logic bothersome. Could any of the list shed some light on this? Ron Severin  
(back) Subject: Re: this organ From: "John Foss" <harkat@kat.forthnet.gr> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 20:14:55 +0200   "M Fox" <ophicleide16@direcway.com> wrote   "I never yet met a pedal mixture that helps congregational singing,"   It doesn't harm it, though that is not its purpose. It's purpose is to = give an independent pedal line for those works - mainly in Bach - that call for =   it, e.g. The "Dorian" Toccata & Fugue in D minor - which I played in the opening recital. To quote Cecil Clutton (again!) "The Tooting organ = succeeds as a versatile solo and accompanimental instrument, entirely devoid of heroics." It is intended for use as a solo instrument as well.   Now were it on the Great or Swell I would agree with you. A stop I have never found successful is a 2 rank mixture on the manuals, other than a Sesquialtera, which is a solo sound anyway, rather than a chorus mixture. You need 3 and preferably 4 ranks to make a mixture a success.   John Foss      
(back) Subject: Re: the simulator From: "John L. Speller" <jlspeller@swbell.net> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 12:22:32 -0600     ----- Original Message ----- From: "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk> To: "PipeChat" <pipechat@pipechat.org> Sent: Sunday, November 28, 2004 6:52 AM Subject: Re: the simulator     > Does anyone KNOW why it is almost always the > Principal/Diapason sounds which let the electronic > side down; especially with the cheaper products.   Yes, it is because digitally sampled electronic organs generally suffer = from the same problem as over-unified pipe organs -- an inadequate number of = tone generators. The best electronic organs have multiple sets of tone generators and some of them are real time rather than digitally sampled, = so that the chorus can be built up like a pipe organ to suit the room, rather than relying on some digitally sampled instrument 3000 miles away, however nice the original may be within its own context.   John Speller      
(back) Subject: Re: A multi facited question From: "John L. Speller" <jlspeller@swbell.net> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 12:33:09 -0600   On Victorian trackers there would not normally be offset chests, = although sometimes the bass octave of, say, the Swell 16 ft. Bourdon = might be tubed off and placed outside the swellbox. This would not, = however, require the stop to be split. Probably the main reason for = having the lowest octave only drawing as a separate stop was to enable = it to be played on the Pedal without it playing on most of the manual. = These were the days, remember, when the right foot sat more or less = fixed permanently to the swell pedal and the left foot danced about = mostly in the lowest octave of the pedal.   John Speller=20 ----- Original Message -----=20 From: RonSeverin@aol.com=20 To: pipechat@pipechat.org=20 Sent: Sunday, November 28, 2004 12:02 PM Subject: Re: A multi facited question     One of the strangest at least to me was to provide the Oboe 8' from tenor C 49 which made no sense or split 12 Basson and 49 Oboe. I would like to explore opinions form both sides of the aisle Builders and organists as to why you think = this technique was considered and used. Could offset chests be the culprit?
(back) Subject: Re: A multi facited question From: "Jim McFarland" <mcfarland6@juno.com> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 13:49:32 -0500     John and List:   Please don't be angry with me, John, but for the fourth time in three days I am going to disagree with you. ( I usually wholeheartedly agree with you, so perhaps I should examine my spiritual condition.)   Numerous New York and New England instruments from the early and mid 1800's had "offset chests" some times referred to as choir basses (presumably because they occupied the choir position within the case.)   These bass chests would contain some 8 and sometimes 4 foot basses to complete the short compass swell ranks that were in the box, usually tenor c or tenor f.   The extra knob to draw these was ( I assume ) a matter of it being easier to construct and operate the stop actions. Why the practice continued after the bass chests disappeared, I can only speculate. Perhaps organists had found other uses (as suggested in some of the responses - such as John's), or organ builders wanted the stoplists to reflect that these were not short compass ranks?   I am interested in seeing other responses, as this is a subject that often tickles the nether regions of my brain. (At my age, massive regions of my brain have crossed over into the netherworld.     Jim       On Sun, 28 Nov 2004 12:33:09 -0600 "John L. Speller" <jlspeller@swbell.net> writes: On Victorian trackers there would not normally be offset chests, although sometimes the bass octave of, say, the Swell 16 ft. Bourdon might be tubed off and placed outside the swellbox. This would not, however, require the stop to be split. Probably the main reason for having the lowest octave only drawing as a separate stop was to enable it to be played on the Pedal without it playing on most of the manual. These were the days, remember, when the right foot sat more or less fixed permanently to the swell pedal and the left foot danced about mostly in the lowest octave of the pedal.   John Speller ----- Original Message ----- From: RonSeverin@aol.com To: pipechat@pipechat.org Sent: Sunday, November 28, 2004 12:02 PM Subject: Re: A multi facited question     One of the strangest at least to me was to provide the Oboe 8' from tenor C 49 which made no sense or split 12 Basson and 49 Oboe. I would like to explore opinions form both sides of the aisle Builders and organists as to why you think this technique was considered and used. Could offset chests be the culprit?             Some mornings it just doesn't seem worth it to gnaw through the leather straps.
(back) Subject: Re: Thriving on Misinformation, working on ending it. From: "David Scribner" <david@blackiris.com> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 12:48:43 -0600   At 1:02 PM -0800 11/27/04, T.Desiree' Hines wrote: >RMB10@aol.com wrote: > >"Dialogues between us all can only help to further everyone's >knowledge of the instrument that we all love." > >This is very true. Sebastian mentioned a book by=20 >Stephens that has been discredited. I have never=20 >heard of this book. What texts are out there=20 >that are indeed credible on stop=20 >design/nomenclature?   Desire=E9 brings up a very good point here. There=20 are numerous books available, well respected=20 texts unlike the Stephen Irwin book, but the=20 problem is to find out about them.   The American institute of Organbuilders has both=20 a Bibliography and a Organ Building Syllabus=20 available on-line. Although there were developed=20 as tools to help those AIO members who are=20 studying for AIO Certification they are good=20 resources for someone that is serious in learning=20 more about the pipe organ. Both of these files=20 are available as PDF files and Plain Text files=20 and can be downloaded from the AIO web site.   The address is http://www.pipeorgan.org and then=20 click on the "Certification" link on the left=20 side of the home page.   David (wearing another of his hats as AIO Webmaster)  
(back) Subject: Re: this organ From: <RonSeverin@aol.com> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 13:57:25 EST   Dear John: In one instance on a small two manual pipe organ I did split a four rank mixture into a 2 2/3' and 2' Rauschquint and a 1 1/3' and 1' Scharf. It increased the flexability and use of the pipes as there was a 16' Violone on the Great as well as a 8' 4' 2' Principal Chorus. The Violone 8' acted as a second Diapason. I also had an independant 4' Copple flute and a Spitz Flute at 8 and 4' . It was quite useful to split the mixture into two stops low and high. I didn't need to add the third rank the 2/3' to the sharff. For the room. It was brilliant enough without the fifth rank. The mixture was silvery without being overbearingly loud or obtrusive. It was wonderful for hymns as well as Bach and the other masters. Ron Severin  
(back) Subject: Re: Thriving on Misinformation, working on ending it. From: "David Scribner" <david@blackiris.com> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 12:58:56 -0600   At 12:48 PM -0600 11/28/04, David Scribner wrote: >Desire=E9 brings up a very good point here. There=20 >are numerous books available, well respected=20 >texts unlike the Stephen Irwin book, but the=20 >problem is to find out about them.   WOOPS! - I wrote without checking the book! <G>=20 The correct spelling of the author is STEVENS=20 Irwin   Sorry   David  
(back) Subject: A Little Humor at church this morning From: "LBoekeloo" <lboekeloo@triton.net> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 14:29:59 -0500   As I blew in to church as a substitute to play on the world's WORST electronic instrument this morning, it was evident that the music light on the organ would not turn on. With my mechanical mind, I attempted to diagnose the problem noticing a Christmas Tree on the chancel with a gazillion electrical extension cords from here to eternity intermixed with the cables extruding for the back of the organ.   Of course, I followed the one cord from the music light to the outlet and even though it was plugged in, no light appeared. After untangling cords for several minutes, someone from across the chancel asked what the problem was. I responded that the music light on the organ was not working and I was trying to resolve the issue.   To my amazement, she announced to the entire choir and several members of the congregation that "Larry's trying to get light on his organ".   I looked at the minister, raised my eyebrows and looked away laughing to myself for the remainder of the morning.   Larry Boekeloo Kalamazoo, Michigan   -----Original Message----- From: pipechat@pipechat.org [mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org] On Behalf Of Colin Mitchell Sent: Friday, November 26, 2004 1:59 PM To: PipeChat Subject: RE: stop list competition   Hello,   For no other reason that I play a very effective instrument which is actually smaller than 6 stops per division mentioned, and also due to the fact that I know an organ about this size which is a wonderful acompaniment instrument, I thought I would weigh in with something I normally never bother about.....a stoplist which would, hopefully, sit on exisiting slider windchests.   To me, the most important consideration is the acoustic, and by the sounds of it, this is not very lively......so forget Schnitger Mixtures!   One of the finest exponents of the small organ was Fr Willis, and even in quite large instruments of around 50 stops, he seldom supplied bright Mixtures. Even large cathedral organs often had no more than two or three tierce Mixtures at 17.19.22., but never sounded in the least bit dull.   I suppose the trick is to get maximum variety, yet a cohesive sound where all stops blend, because it is important to make full use of what IS available.     Swell   Holzflute 8ft Principal 4 Fifteenth 2 Recorder 2 Sesquialtera 2 rks (12.17.) Trumpet 8       Great     Diapason 8 Rohrflute 8 Koppel Flute 4 Octave 4 Mixture (15.19.22) III   Dulzian 16     Pedal     Bourdon 16 Violoncello 8 Flute 4   Sw - Gt Sw - Ped Gt - Ped     The inclusion of a 16ft reed on the Great may seem odd, but my thinking is that it would fulfil three roles. At the octave higher, it could serve as a solo register seperate from the Swell, when coupled to the full Swell, it could produce an accompaniment reed/flue sound and, as a 16ft Great stop, it would add gravity and colour without weight.   With a seperate unit chest for the 16ft reed, it would be possible to have another stop on the slider chest, but I have stuck to the idea of 12 independent manual registers.   In a less than lively acoustic, the combination of 2ft Fifteenth and the 2 rank Sesqiultera would produce a bright enough sound, with the tierce rank acting as a tonal "binder"....an old English/William Hill trick.   With adequate scaling and fairly robust voicing, I believe such an instrument would fulfil far more than the limited stop-list might suggest. Regards,   Colin Mitchell UK         __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Mail - You care about security. So do we. http://promotions.yahoo.com/new_mail   ****************************************************************** "Pipe Up and Be Heard!" PipeChat: A discussion List for pipe/digital organs & related topics HOMEPAGE : http://www.pipechat.org List: mailto:pipechat@pipechat.org Administration: mailto:admin@pipechat.org List-Subscribe: <mailto:pipechat-on@pipechat.org> List-Digest: <mailto:pipechat-digest@pipechat.org> List-Unsubscribe: <mailto:pipechat-off@pipechat.org>          
(back) Subject: RE: this organ From: "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz> Date: Mon, 29 Nov 2004 10:10:09 +1300   >A stop I have never found successful is a 2 rank mixture on the manuals, other than a Sesquialtera, which is a solo sound anyway, rather than a chorus mixture. You need 3 and preferably 4 ranks to make a mixture a success.   For me, that's a bit strong. I have seen and heard a number of 2rk = Mixtures that are most successful. If, say, a Great has a Diapason chorus at 8 4 2, = a simple 2rk Mixture of (19.22) can be of vast benefit and does not need to = be bigger. I've found three conditions need for this to work well, though: first, a separate Twelfth as well only fouls up the sound; second, you = need to go four octaves before a break; third, the pipes need to be of good harmonic content.   In this latter respect, I am convinced that the higher the harmonic = content of the ranks, the fewer the number of ranks required in the Mixture. Pipes made by German or Dutch supply houses often just won't blend with 19thC pipework. A 2rk, harmonically-rich Mixture of 2rks, to illustrate, would sound infinitely better added to (for example) an old Norman & Beard or TCLewis, than would a "thinner" toned Mixture of 4rks. That's why I = believe additions to Victorian organs so often fail: the stops added in rebuilds have got entirely the wrong scaling and mouth details.   I recall going to the RSCM in Addington Palace in 1992. One of the seven organs there had had upperwork added and it was utterly ghastly and non-blending. There is no need for that at all.   Ross    
(back) Subject: Re: this organ From: <RonSeverin@aol.com> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 17:00:14 EST   Dear Ross: If the 2 2/3' is too loud I would agree with you. The Victorian Organs that you mention work better with lower pitched Fourniture Mixtures. Willis, HNB, AH, as well as Cavaille Coll went with 12, 15. 19, 22, and sometimes 26 on a five ranker. Some were started at the Octave, 8ve, 12, 15, 17, 19 or 8ve. 12, 15,19, 22. The breaks were far fewer. See Sebastian Gluck's compositions for his 137 rank Temple Organ the top octave ended up something like this: 1st, 5th, 8ve, 12, 15. Alexander Schreiner used to demonstrate the Mormon Tabernacle organ using just the great fourniture and it sonded like a softer diapason chorus. I think the pendulum has returned in that direction. The extremes of high pitched mixtures with more than three breaks is a thing of the past. Fugues play much better on lower pitched mixtures. As I see it, voicing will steadily return to a more Victorian, Cathedral like ideal. Scales will Will return to more reasonable sizes and T.C. Lewis style choruses will reign again. I just heard Wm. Eric Suter Play the National Cathedral Hybred In Washinton D.C. No shrill stuff there even for big hymns. It was Great against Caged Rage of the Swell reeds all the way. Thrilling too. Ron Severin  
(back) Subject: RE: this organ From: "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk> Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 14:13:49 -0800 (PST)   Hello,   I suppose it's a 60/70's hangover, but J W Walker added a simply dreadful 3 rks Mixture to the largely Arthur Harrison organ of Halifax PC here in the UK, and it simply sits unhappily on the foundations......like a kipper floating on custard.   A far better idea would simply have been to remove the b21st in the previous Harrison 4rk Harmonics.   When harmonic development has been stifled by fine regulation, thick pipe material and quite heavy nicking, there is nothing worse than a brightly voiced, ill-scaled Mixture being floated on top of the 16,8,4 & 2ft Diapasons.   I don't know why people subscribe to the view that "brilliance" comes purely from Mixture registers, and that this same brilliance can be added where it is not musically welcomed by the chorus......just awful.   Quite where people get the idea that even baroque Mixtures are loud, is beyond me. Baroque mixtures are usually very subtle; no matter how high pitched. The really loud Mixtures are to be found in certain German romantic instruments, but due to the fact that the chorus-work is already brightly voiced, it can be accomodated, as the famous example of a more-or-less straight line chorus and 5 rks Mixture on the Schulze organ of St.Bart's, Armley, here in the UK, amply demonstrates. Thankfully, the huge acoustic tempers the resultant explosion of German Principal sound, which occurs when the 5 rks Mixture is drawn...in effect, almost doubling the power of the chorus.   With regard to 2 rk Mixtures, I tend to agree with Ross about this. I used to play a brightly voiced Binns, to which had been added a 19:22 Mixture. It sounded superb. Apart from the top octave, it went through without a break, and did speak into a generous acoustic.   Regards,   Colin MItchell UK       --- TheShieling <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz> wrote:   > For me, that's a bit strong. I have seen and heard a > number of 2rk Mixtures > that are most successful.   > I am convinced that the > higher the harmonic content > of the ranks, the fewer the number of ranks required > in the Mixture.         __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? The all-new My Yahoo! - What will yours do? http://my.yahoo.com