pre-gig blog

The clock is loudly ticking in the silence of this Sunday morning. I thought I had better blog a bit before the morning gets entirely away from me.

Yesterday I did a lot of cooking. Blueberry muffins, fancy rice, anadama bread. I also sat down at the piano and did some singing. A bit of Dylan’s “Tears of Rage” and my own “Black & White.”

I think I was remembering in the back of my mind that today was a local singer songwriter workshop sponsored by a coffee house that has asked me to perform (Lemonjellos) & the local arts society. I think I was a bit disappointed not to be asked. Or at least thought I would have something to say about songwriting.

I did notice the last time I played the coffee house the other band seemed totally unimpressed with my work. Ah well. I still think it’s good but wonder if it has much commercial appeal to any one who might actually listen to it.

And then there’s recording.

Oy. I think I am totally buffaloed by the idea of trying to make a good recording. I think I could do it. At least close to my own standards. But it takes so much time and, yes, equipment.

Since it’s not that hard or expensive to make a digital recording these days, it might seem a bit odd that I think it’s expensive. But using the best (or even acceptable) mikes and software does run quickly into money.

My little shure M57 does great for voice and acoustic guitar.  And also anything one can plug directly into it like elec piano or guitar. But say for acoustic piano…. yikes. More and better mikes needed.

This morning I am performing two organ pieces from Bach’s Orgelbuchlein. I put a little note into the bulletin today:

“A note on the today’s organ music Today’s organ prelude and postlude are drawn from J. S. Bach’s Orgelb?chlein or “Little Organ Book.” This is a collection of miniature masterpieces Bach wrote around 1714. The purpose of these compositions is not known. They seem to be short meditations on hymns illustrating Bach’s understanding of the texts. The prelude, “Wir Christenleut,” is the last in a series of Advent Christmas tunes Bach put in his little book. The title is the first line of the hymn: “We Christian folk rejoice now.” “Helft mir Gotts G?ten preisen” follows this setting immediately in the collection. (This is the reason their “BWV numbers” are consecutive.) The words of this hymn reflect “on the time of the winter solstice and on God’s gifts through the past year” (Clarke).  I will introduce each of these settings with a complete play through of the tune unadorned before proceeding to Bach’s setting.

Nothing like quoting yourself in the blog, eh? I notice that the umlaut is italicized or some such shit. Oh well. This is the way it is in the bulletin.

Last night I helped Eileen figure out how to manipulate her new MP3 player.

Dictaphone_Model_7_Type_A_COLUMBIA_GRAPHOPHONE_CO_NY_NY.jpg (64508 bytes)

It entailed installing Windows Media 10 or whatever.

I also spent a couple hours putting the notes to “It was a lover and his lass” by Thomas Morley (solo lute version) into Finale. After I printed it up in the key I would like to do it, I realized that Noah Greenberg’s version of the keyboard rendition was not what I wanted. So I had to redo that.

I am planning to use this at the choral recital on Feb 14th. Get it? Valentines day and all.  What a lot of work for that.

Afterwards I went over to church and prepared for today. I didn’t have the heart to do more than rehearse the prelude, postlude, and hymns. Also made sure I had multiple copies of music for today’s post choral rehearsal. The youth choir is singing today so that makes a bit easier Sunday for me (I don’t direct it).

I realized that I was pounding away on 16th century madrigal music at the same time, the group I played with last time who seemed to disdain my work were giving a workshop in how to write songs.

Hmmmm. I guess I am a bit of an anachronism.  But it’s the way I prefer it. Thank goodness I have a gig.

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