PipeChat Digest #5061 - Friday, January 7, 2005
 
Re: Oceans of Strings
  by "Jonathan Orwig" <giwro@adelphia.net>
RE: Oceans of Strings
  by "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz>
RE: Oceans of Strings
  by "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz>
Re: Oceans of Strings
  by "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk>
Screwing up strings
  by <TubaMagna@aol.com>
Re: Oceans of Strings
  by "Jonathan Orwig" <giwro@adelphia.net>
Aria
  by "Alan Freed" <acfreed0904@earthlink.net>
Octopods???
  by "Daniel Hancock" <dhancock@brpae.com>
RE: BOOR
  by "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz>
Re: Aria
  by "Randolph Runyon" <runyonr@muohio.edu>
Re: Oceans of Strings
  by <Keys4bach@aol.com>
Re: Oceans of Strings
  by "F. Richard Burt" <effarbee@verizon.net>
Re: PipeChat Digest #5060 - 01/06/05
  by "Charlie Lester" <crl@137.com>
 

(back) Subject: Re: Oceans of Strings From: "Jonathan Orwig" <giwro@adelphia.net> Date: Thu, 06 Jan 2005 15:43:07 -0800   On Fri, 7 Jan 2005 12:18:10 +1300, TheShieling <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz> wrote:   > >> Exactly the reason I'd never work for _you_! > > Fine! Except that you'd miss out on a genuinely musical clergyman. > (further chuckle) > > <chuckle> > >> No place in worship? >> Self-indulgent? >> Pshaw. >> It's REGISTRATION for crying out loud, not bloody THEOLOGY > > No, not registration, except in the simple technical sense. That kind of > slush has no place in worship. It is designed to nothing but tickle, > exactly > the same way as prayze bands and the like do with their repetitive > idiotic > jingles of words.   AGGGGHHHH   Now careful, here....   Two things:   Since when did worship have to be an ascetic CHORE that is not enjoyable? I'll admit that the primary focus in worship must be to give glory to God, but must it be severe and cold? Is there anything wrong with deriving = some enjoyment from the worship experience if the worshipper remains cognizant that this is a BYPRODUCT rather than the end result?   Secondly, I implore you to not make sweeping generalizations about Praise bands and that genre of music... you do your credibility a huge = disservice. While I will agree that much of the genre in it's early years was me-centered, shallow, repetitive and mostly lacking in good theology, I have seen a richening of text (and even musical structure) in the last 5-7 years that rivals some of the best hymnology and traditional music. Let me give a coupe of examples:   *****************   For the praises of man I will never ever stand For the kingdoms of this world I=E2=80=99ll never give my heart away or = shout my praise, My allegiance and devotion, my heart=E2=80=99s desire and all emotion Go to serve the Man who died upon that tree   Only a God like You could be worthy of my praise and all my hope and faith To only a king of all kings do I bow my knee and sing give my everything Only a God like You could be worthy of my praise and all my hope and faith To only a king of all kings do I bow my knee and sing give my everything To only my Maker, my Father, my Savior, Redeemer, Restorer, Rebuilder, Rewarder To only a God like You do I give my praise   ****************   Verse 1 We believe in God the Father. We believe in Christ the Son. We believe in the Holy Spirit. We are the Church And we stand as one.   Chorus Holy, holy, holy is our God. Worthy, worthy, worthy Is our King. All glory and honor Are His to receive; To Jesus we sing, Because we believe.   Verse 2 We believe in the Holy Bible. We believe in the virgin birth. We believe in the resurrection, That Christ, one day, Will return to earth.   Verse 3 We believe in the blood of Jesus. We believe in eternal life. We believe in the blood That frees us To become the Bride of Christ.   *************     I could make out a very good theological case that > slush > perverts worship. I cannot imagine why anyone would want to go back to > the > perverse decadence of the sludge of the past. After many years of = working > for better design and better instruments, some of us would not be at all > willing to be dragged back into stuff that belongs in the = theatre/cinema. > The increasing love affair with octopods and structureless musical > garbage > is not something I'd want to be responsible for, at all, ever.   Many of the folks writing this music have now actually had some musical education, and much of it has begun to have singable melodies and chord progressions =   that are more interesting and that include more than 3 chords <grin>   You don't have to like it, you don't have to participate in a service that = uses it, but I cannot allow blanket statements like that to go unanswered - they are false, misleading and unbefitting. I work very hard to see that the music I choose for our 2nd service (with a Praise band that _I_ lead!) has some theological meat, decent melodies and (usually) more sophisticated chord progressions. It has to be singable and theologically = sound, I'll bend on the chords a bit...   > > How about joining me for a long ramble on the beach five mins.walk from =   > my > home here? We'd enjoy the lively debate, I'm certain. As Colin Mitchell =   > and > Lou Pfaff will tell you, the only two Listers who I've met, I'm not > really > frightening in the flesh. ;-()   I'd love that... if the wife and I ever make it down that way, you can be =   sure I'll look you up   Cheers,   Jonathan  
(back) Subject: RE: Oceans of Strings From: "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz> Date: Fri, 7 Jan 2005 13:10:27 +1300     >If clergy types can stand there with arms held high and with tears rolling down their faces, why shouldn't the organist give them good reason to?   Clearly the organist does them good reason to, in the USA anyway! :-)   Ross    
(back) Subject: RE: Oceans of Strings From: "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz> Date: Fri, 7 Jan 2005 13:19:05 +1300   >Since when did worship have to be an ascetic CHORE that is not enjoyable?   Oh yes, I'd agree with you here. I would never suggest worship should be either ascetic or a chore.   >I'll admit that the primary focus in worship must be to give glory to = God, but must it be severe and cold?   No, it just not be severe and cold.   > Is there anything wrong with deriving some enjoyment from the worship experience if the worshipper remains cognizant that this is a BYPRODUCT rather than the end result?   No problem there. I thoroughly agree with you.   >Secondly, I implore you to not make sweeping generalizations about Praise bands and that genre of music... you do your credibility a huge = disservice. While I will agree that much of the genre in it's early years was me-centered, shallow, repetitive and mostly lacking in good theology, I have seen a richening of text (and even musical structure) in the last 5-7 years that rivals some of the best hymnology and traditional music.   There is much modern hymnody that is wonderful and I'd be the first to complain if anyone wanted to go back to A&M (Ancient & Modern) alone. Much of that style is sterile and dull, plainly boring. And yes, some of the modern hymns are quite wonderful and I'd be in a queue to assert that.   >Let me give a coupe of examples:   Don't know either of those. Copy possible to the South Seas?   >Many of the folks writing this music have now actually had some musical education, and much of it has begun to have singable melodies and chord progressions =   that are more interesting and that include more than 3 chords <grin>   For sure. The worst examples of the yuck style that I know here come from = a fellow with a BMus, though. He was a Presbyterian minister, became a = Baptist pastor for some years, then was Director of Music for the Salvation Army = for two years, was sacked from that and is now on the dole. He once boasted = that he would not allow the congregation to sing anything older than two years. And no, there's no way I'm suggesting he is typical.   >I'd love that... if the wife and I ever make it down that way, you can be = sure I'll look you up   Good! In this discussion I've been deliberately opinionated, to try to get = a strong response. Have I gone too far? Oh well.... :-)   Ross      
(back) Subject: Re: Oceans of Strings From: "Colin Mitchell" <cmys13085@yahoo.co.uk> Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2005 16:42:54 -0800 (PST)   Hello,   Now I know why European organs are more effective than many (but not all) symphonic American instruments......the difference is theological.   The truth dawned when Ross wrote:-   It's REGISTRATION for crying out loud, not bloody THEOLOGY   Then I read the "theology" Jonathan wrote of:-   > For the praises of man I will never ever stand > For the kingdoms of this world I=E2=80=99ll never give my > heart away or shout my > praise, > My allegiance and devotion, my heart=E2=80=99s desire and > all emotion > Go to serve the Man who died upon that tree   I think this could serve as the European version:-   The praise of mankind I cannot give, the deceits of empire I cannot live, In quiet devotion, I will play my part, serving the risen Christ, in spirit and in heart.     It's also got quite a catchy rhythm!   I think the difference is one of sheer bulk, but unfortunately, more is often less effective.   The theologians love words like omniscient, omnipotent, omniquiescent and omnipresent, so the time has come to have organ words which adequately describe the traditional American organ "ocean of strings".   How about Omniluscious, Omnigrandiloquent,Omnisonorous, Omniconglomerent,Omnioscillatory....nay.... Omniheterodynious!!   Regards,   Colin Mitchell UK   PS: Ross frightens small children and cats!     __________________________________ Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Mail - Easier than ever with enhanced search. Learn more. http://info.mail.yahoo.com/mail_250  
(back) Subject: Screwing up strings From: <TubaMagna@aol.com> Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2005 19:51:23 EST   Dearest PipeChatters: I wonder why organists seem to prefer their strings one of two ways: = they either draw the parent rank and its undulant and use them as-is, or throw every pair in the organ on with the tremulants, and sub- and super-couple = them all together. STRINGS ARE SCALED, VOICED, FINISHED, AND TUNED AS REAL ORGAN STOPS. Strings require a great deal of regulation to make sure that the = balance between the registers is correct, and that there is a musically effective transition between the subtle colors as one ascends the scale. The = diametric halving ratios for strings can be quite slow -- 24th pipe or higher in = orchestrally suggestive examples -- and the rosiny, bowing tone of the bass gives way = to a mellower, gentler tone above. Strings are greatly differentiated by mouth width, cutup, languid = bevel, and slotting. It may be that the modern American phenomenon of bland, cardboard-like string tone has led to the perception that strings are = nothing more than diluted dyes to be used in quantity. Having just recently tonally finished thirty ranks of high-pressure strings for an organ (including a V-rank string cornet with both 3-1/5' = and 1-3/5' orchestral violins in it), I can tell you that one must be VERY careful = with octave couplers. In that particular instrument, in which all the ranks = were a full 73 pipes, we tuned all of the undulants (including the flat Third = Violin) dead-in with the parent ranks from Gsharp 57 to C73 on the 8' Celestes, = and from C# 50 to C73 on the 4' undulant. This keeps very ugly things from = happening when an organist starts pulling knobs wildly because they want "full = squish."   Sebastian M. Gluck New York City http://www.glucknewyork.com/ ..  
(back) Subject: Re: Oceans of Strings From: "Jonathan Orwig" <giwro@adelphia.net> Date: Thu, 06 Jan 2005 16:56:42 -0800   On Fri, 7 Jan 2005 13:19:05 +1300, TheShieling <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz> wrote:   > Good! In this discussion I've been deliberately opinionated, to try to > get a > strong response. Have I gone too far? Oh well.... :-) > > Ross   Not at all - your goad has well-met its mark!   I do not mind differing (even strong) opinions - I deplore closed minds   I _do_, however, enjoy hyperbole when used as a tool to "stir the pot" as it were (which it seems is your modus operandi)   My strong response is understandable when seen in the light of the indifference (at best) of many of my colleagues concerning the changes in worship styles, and those who are (at worst) downright nasty about the same subject. While being sympathetic to those who have lost their livlihood when a new pastor = comes in and cans the traditional music program, lumping all of the situations together is, at best, disingenious. Some of us actually believe that one can worship God in spirit and truth REGARDLESS of the musical style, as long as it is done well with integrity and careful thought. I have a secret fantasy about Jesus meeting a modern-day woman at the well:   Woman: Our fathers say we should worship with organs, choirs and traditional music, our sons and daughters say it should be with praise bands, worship choruses and words projected on a screen Jesus: Woman, the day is coming (and now has come) when the true worshippers will worship the Father IN SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH, for they are the kind of worshippers the Father seeks   I'll admit I've taken a bit of license here, but the principle is very sound, I believe. I imagine (yea, actually, believe quite strongly) that God could care less = about our STYLE of worship, or the MUSICAL MEANS by which we accomplish it, as long as when we DO it, it is giving to Him our best, and our hearts = have the right attitude. WE (ivory-towered musicians) make the distinction that some music or style or instrumentation (registration?) is = better or more "holy" than another. Throughout the biblical record, God has shown a marked preference for the true worshipper, rather than the mens by which it is accomplished. I seem to remember him speaking harshly to the Israelites who were going through the motions of the right "format", but in reality, their lives did = not match their purported beliefs, and so ("correct" format or not) their =   worship was reckoned unworthy.   What does all of this have to do with organs? Actually, if you serve in a = church, probably quite a lot. Many have struggled with these issues, and =   rather than be flexible and see things from a different perspective, have =   either stiffend their necks and gotten fired, or have fled for some place =   that the Problem hasn't touched yet.   I'll close this (rapidly becoming off-topic) rant with this statement again, which I have made to countless people (and even on this list, perhaps):   You don't have to like Praise bands You don't have to attend (or work) at a church that has one   BUT   To say that their style of worship is "inferior" means you have decided to = usurp God's role of Judge. Not a good idea. You can believe that FOR YOU = it is not giving your best, or does not fulfill the criteria of worthy worship, but to judge the heart of another in this matter treads on dangerous theological ground.   Now, I'm off - it is 5 p.m. here, and I have to go prepare for my 7 p.m. rehearsal with the Praise band   <grins>   Jonathan   -- Using Opera's revolutionary e-mail client: http://www.opera.com/m2/  
(back) Subject: Aria From: "Alan Freed" <acfreed0904@earthlink.net> Date: Thu, 06 Jan 2005 20:36:20 +0000   Randy, can you BELIEVE that your one small-scale composition has inspired = so MUCH conversation, of a genuinely theological nature?   Be pleased!   Alan    
(back) Subject: Octopods??? From: "Daniel Hancock" <dhancock@brpae.com> Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2005 19:53:37 -0600   Ross writes:   After many years of working for better design and better instruments, some of us would not be at al= l willing to be dragged back into stuff that belongs in the theatre/cinem= a. The increasing love affair with octopods and structureless musical garb= age is not something I'd want to be responsible for, at all, ever.   Surely there can't be TOO many demands for organs like octopods! But, wh= en you consider the the way the pendulum swung from those very types of i= nstruments that you disdain to the sort of organs that have pitch centers= at 4' or higher, then no wonder that organists today are starving for 8'= stops of varied character! If the pendulum could only have stopped in t= he middle!   I'm not a proponent for "slush" organs (whatever THAT may be) or for octo= pods, but I rate of equal value both clear, independent chorus work and t= he all important eight-foot foundations (and that means a diapason, flute= , and string at minimum in each manual division). I would never trade th= e chorus work for the variety in 8' pitch, or vice versa.   Perhaps if more instruments of similar ideal were built, then more organi= sts could have their cake, and others could eat it too (regardless of whe= ther or not they like slush on the top!).   Daniel Hancock      
(back) Subject: RE: BOOR From: "TheShieling" <TheShieling@xtra.co.nz> Date: Fri, 7 Jan 2005 15:00:42 +1300   Hi, folks,   Here is a copy of something I put together way back in the late 1960s. It could possibly be useful to revive this organisation:   "B.O.O.R. =3D Belligerent Organisation of Organ Reformers.   "I have the greatest pleasure in bringing to your notice a decision of the Grand Council. At the last meeting, it was unanimously decided to elect = you a Fellow BOOR. As you will realise, election to this original society imposes a number of sacred obligations, a summary of which is here subjoined for your benefit and education:   "THOU SHALT at all times - "1. Examine any and every organ, wheresoever situate. "2. Dissect it, dismantle it, pull it to pieces, criticise it, wreck it, speak of it pejoratively, disparage it, condemn it, leave it in a = shambles, be rude about it and generally give the impression, nay, the = well-considered opinion that thou hast never seen a worse instrument, ever, anywhere, or = any size, condition or tone. "3. Refuse to recognise the opinion of anyone else in matters organical = as being of any worth or merit whatsoever. "4. Maintain a hearty indifference to questions of musical usefulness in discussion of organs. Music is of no concern to a BOOR. To quote our illustrious founder, Organicus Hystericus (1342-c.1521), 'Music and musicianship are the enemies of the organ'. "5. Conform to the dictates of the Organomoral Law, which demands = militant, inquisitorial demands for public opinion to fall in line with that of = Fellow BOORs, who are under strict compulsion to encourage arguments with all who pretend to be knowledgeable on any subject connected with church music = (both organ and choral), church architecture and acoustics, theology, liturgy, = and organbuilding in all their aspects and respects. "Signed, PATENT BOOR" (President And The Enormously Talented BOOR).   Waddya reckin?   Ross      
(back) Subject: Re: Aria From: "Randolph Runyon" <runyonr@muohio.edu> Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2005 21:11:16 -0500     On Jan 6, 2005, at 3:36 PM, Alan Freed wrote:   > Randy, can you BELIEVE that your one small-scale composition has > inspired so > MUCH conversation, of a genuinely theological nature? > > Be pleased! > > Alan >   Hi, Alan. It's a very weird feeling, I must say. Kinda fun to see it all happen, though.   Randy    
(back) Subject: Re: Oceans of Strings From: <Keys4bach@aol.com> Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2005 22:14:45 EST   as long as the META-NARRATIVE is the same All else is well. in other words, if our core story is the same, the book and or = story-teller makes NO difference. dale in florida  
(back) Subject: Re: Oceans of Strings From: "F. Richard Burt" <effarbee@verizon.net> Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2005 22:53:12 -0600   Hello, PipeChatters:   Ross wrote:   Yes, yes, yes, I do, ad infinitum, ad nauseam. Anglicans did not invent this slush, I'm certain of that. It really does, to me, sound revolting and a perversion of what the organ is meant to be doing. I cannot imagine it in worship. . .   Well, I understand that there was a time, . . . an ancient time when the organ was played during the feeding of the lions in Rome. Some of the descendents of those early Christians remembered "that awful noise," and forbade the use of an organ in church at all.   Maybe we have come full circle. <grins>   F. Richard Burt     ..      
(back) Subject: Re: PipeChat Digest #5060 - 01/06/05 From: "Charlie Lester" <crl@137.com> Date: Fri, 07 Jan 2005 01:39:22 -0800   "Tim Bovard" <tmbovard@earthlink.net> wrote,   =3D-> Charlie fails to mention why organbuilders design instruments to be capable of providing full slush combinations. (the chimes too, for that matter, which should preferably make an occasional entrance in any slushy performance) It makes bluehaired little old spinster ladies 'pee their pews in glee'. Then they write BIG FAT checks to the organ/music fund...! ;-) ;-) ;-) <-=3D     ABSOLUTELY. It's been said, and truly so, "More souls have been saved with chimes and vox humana than any other stops in the organ."   And, as was recently posted on another organ list, there's an old late-19th century jingle that goes:   "Hear the pennies gently dropping As the music fills the air If you had a Vox Humana Dimes and nickels would be there."         =3D-> --Tim (who would probably leave the trems outta Charlie's mix, unless it really *is* a theatre organ, but whaddever....! <g>) <-=3D     Oh dear, no --- you need the tremulants in this kind of registration!   Now, no, not throbbing theatre organ trems (although they do certainly do their thing with the Wurlitzer variety of String Slush, but that's a whole 'nuther color and style of playing).   I mean "Proper Church Tremulants." When drawn with all "Slush" registers, the tremulants give a very lovely quality to the ensemble that suggests the bowing of strings. Without the trems, Full Slush just sounds like a out-of-tune organ.   I feel sorry to those who have posted "aspersions" against this type of registration, falling just short of condemning it as "The Devil's Work." What sad nonsense! People who cannot indulge occasionally in some sentimentality on the organ really puzzle me. I'll just leave it at that and you can fill in the rest of my usual sort of rant for yourselves ....... It's late, and I'm tired.   ~ C