hot musings from helland

Even though one of my classes was canceled due to the rescheduling of classes in air conditioned studios, I found myself pretty exhausted at the end of the day, yesterday. It has been incredibly hot here and I did walk back and forth to Ballet from home in 110 degree heat.

Early in the day, I spent time at the organ choosing music for this Sunday. Our closing hymn is “Lord dismiss us with they blessing’ to the usual tune of SICILIAN MARINERS. I was surprised to find a pretty lovely Intermezzo based on this tune by Fruhauf in my library. I have looked at his work before and find it uneven in quality and sometimes lengthy. It will require a tad bit of rehearsal but I think it will be nice for Sunday.

For the postlude I landed on an obscure (at least to me) composer, John Garth. It’s in a copy of “The Organist’s Companion” edited by Wayne Leupold. I bought this copy of the mag (Vol 19, No 3, March 1997) used to see just what these were like. Not terribly good, but not too bad. I might purchase more if I find them cheap.

Anyway, according to the blurb in the mag, Garth was born in 1722 in Durham England and died in London in 1810.  He “was active in County Durham and is known to have been an organist in Sedgefield.” There are a few more details on Wikipedia including the fact that he edited Marcello’s huge work on the Psalms.

The voluntary starts out with a pretty blah adagio (as English voluntaries do). The Allegro that follows is a charming two part dance that redeems the piece. It will make a good postlude even though everyone leaves as quickly as possible and talks and ignores the music much like the end of a movie.

I also received a box of used music I bought from Craig Cramer yesterday. It didn’t have too much exciting in it. I was disappointed in the 5 anthologies I bought edited by the great English dude, C.H. Trevor. I was hoping they would have some English gems in them. Instead it’s pretty much stuff I already own in better editions (e.g. Walther, Krebs, Guilmant).

I did get a book Organ Voluntaries by Matthew Locke (1621-1627). I purchased this primarily because I have a quasi-son-in-law with the same name.

Matthew Locke
Matthew Locke

See a resemblance?

Also a very interesting book of piano pieces called “Piano Music of Africa and the African Diaspora.”

I do not recognize any of the composers even though they seem to be important mid 20th Century types. Florence B. Price was the first female African-American composer (according to the notes in the book).

There is a jazzy piece in this anthology by her called “Nimble Feet” from a larger work called Dances in the Canebrakes.

All of the music I have read through in this book so far has a popular jazz influence. Some of it looks dryer than that. I will use it to check out composers I haven’t heard of and see if I can find some interesting music that is new to me.

Have to quit. No links again today kids. I have more ballet classes filling up the day today.

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