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 Post subject: German Xmas piece from Bach-Orgelbüchlein
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 10:39 pm 
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Location: Germany
I just recorded two items from the Bach-Orgelbüchlein.
Hopefully it is not boring, since Chris has "Jesu, meine Freude" just yesterday submitted.

"Gelobet seist du, Jesu Christ" is a choral what is common in Germany to be used in the Xmas church service. "Jesu, meine Freude" is often used after the Xmas period as choral.

I have too attached two pictures of "my" organ. Hope you enjoy a bit.

Admin edit: Replaced attachments with live links :

Bach - Orgelbüchlein - BWV 604 - Gelobet seist du, Jesu Christ
Bach - Orgelbüchlein - BWV 610 - Jesu, meine Freude

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 11:08 pm 
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Location: Obamanation, unfortunately...
I can't comment too much on the music because I am unfamiliar with the organ world. I am also not too much of a fan of this kind of music for the organ. But I like the pictures. Where is this located? My guess is somewhere in northwest Germany (judging by the simplicity of the design and lack of ornate carvings it is of a protestant area.)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 11:48 pm 
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Both pieces are very good. As you know, I can't offer any suggestions since I don't know or play organ music. But this first piece, you and Chris play it so differently from each other. Chris plays more subdued, and your tempo is a lot faster and I hear more of the middle range notes. I tend to believe that playing the organ gives one more options for performing pieces differently from others - more so than playing the piano. Not sure if that is true or not, but with all those buttons, and keyboards, you can probably fool around with different sounds more than you can on a piano?

Thanks for letting us see the organ. I like that.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 3:18 pm 
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Very accomplished, and much better technically than my shaky versions which were slapped on much too soon as usual. You have obviously worked real hard on these two tricky pieces, and it shows.

In the 'Gelobet', are you using a tremolo register ? Can't say I like that but others may do.
Some interesting very high overtones in the middle section. This one sounds a bit hurried to me, and some bars seem to have a little tempo fluctuation.

The 'Jesu' is very well done, but I'd like to hear more of the pedal - it is so soft that I cannot make up my mind whether you may have missed some notes or not. That could use a little more body and a little more articulation. It is true that the 'Largo' pertains to the chorale melody, and your tempo is probably right - though I find it just a bit on the fast side (wheres mine is on the slow side - I think we need another organist here to fill up the gap :lol: )

But impressive how you perform these after quite a short time - after all that moaning about being a slow learner :wink:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 3:43 pm 
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Thank you all for your spended time and comments!

Juufa: Yes, Minden is in the northwest region of Germany, westwards from Hanover. And you are right, it is a protestant church, a village church, but nice (and heated during winter !!!). The more I play on the organ, the more I like especially this organ. Maybe anytime I don't need a light on to find every register...

Monica: You are right, the register offer much possibility for sound changes. But not easy sometimes to find a appropriate mix between pedal and manual(s).

Chris: Many thanks for your detailed comments. However, you are wrong: your versions are NOT shaky, and especially your "Jesu, meine Freude" is maybe slow, but much more elaborated regarding articulation. Everyone who tries this piece will see, how difficult it is to think on articulation for every voice because hands and feets have something to do (especially different things to do).

I think however, the tremolo is pretty decent. I am glad that this appears usable to me as some organ tremulos are really not usable (I also used it on "Oh Mensch, bewein dein Sünde").

Regarding pedal on "Jesu": The manual used only Principal 8' + Flute 8', the pedal Subbas 16' + Octave 8' + manual coppel to 2nd manual with additonal 2 x 8' registers. Simply have no more deep registers for the pedal :cry:
However, for my headphones the pedal part comes out sufficient enough, I think.

And, you are right, both pieces are like usual maybe slightly ruhed, especially the "gelobet" on some places. Maybe I rerecord this anytime, but if it is useable as it is you could take it to the site if you like.

Fast progress on organ? Only for the "Jesu" piece I practised 3 weeks, about 3 times a week, at least 1 and a half hour every time only for this single piece. That means about 14 hours + 3 x organ lessons. Only this piece, with only hands, only pedal, together, slow, fast so that it finally appears acceptable. A lot of sweat I think, for only 2 minutes time. However I hope to play it during church service in January, together with the Choral what people can sing.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 6:33 pm 
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Well I still think that is not at all bad, considering you have not been playing very long yet. And this is not easy stuff even though it may sound quite simple to the casual listener.

Anyway these two are now on the site. Would be nice if you could scan the cover of your score so I can put that image on the page along with mine (assuming I can get 2 images properly on a page, bit of an experiment here).

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 8:17 pm 
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Very well played on both of the works. Interesting that you (Chris, Olaf) begin to record the same pieces :) and fun to compare them. It sounds to me as Olaf have his recording equipment much closer to the organ/organist but that might be acoustics in the church.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 6:50 am 
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robert wrote:
It sounds to me as Olaf have his recording equipment much closer to the organ/organist but that might be acoustics in the church.


No, you are absolutely right. I have only the choice to put the recording stuff down to the church room, or fairly close (about 5 meters max.) to the organ pipes, because the empore is not large. Because I am too lazy to run downstairs to operate the recording equipment I put it on the empore. That's why, and because my pedal technique is still not very good (almost stamping with feets instead moving graceful) there is plenty of pedal hitting noise.
I too added additonal reverb, you can't believe how stone dry the sound would be otherwise!

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 8:18 am 
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MindenBlues wrote:
Because I am too lazy to run downstairs to operate the recording equipment I put it on the empore.

You are one lazy sod... I walk up and down all the time when recording (I have to otherwise the tracks become so large that they are unmanageable on my slow PC). But that is better than having to hear all the bench, key, and pedal noises. And it helps to get up every now and then.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 9:39 am 
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techneut wrote:
You are one lazy sod... I walk up and down all the time when recording (I have to otherwise the tracks become so large that they are unmanageable on my slow PC). But that is better than having to hear all the bench, key, and pedal noises. And it helps to get up every now and then.


I would expect that the key and pedal noise is downstairs as well. Only hidden by the reverb like the pipe sounds. Why should the proportion between pedal noise and pipe sound be another one in a longer distance? I directed the mics from the empore above to the pipes, so they should capture more pipe sound than pedal noise. But downstairs it is mixed more together?

I never tried out, but was indeed a bit freaked by the strong key/pedal noise. So something seems be wrong with my theory. :roll:

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 9:49 am 
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MindenBlues wrote:
I would expect that the key and pedal noise is downstairs as well. Only hidden by the reverb like the pipe sounds. Why should the proportion between pedal noise and pipe sound be another one in a longer distance?

Because the pipe sound is louder and carries much further, as it should, than the little sounds from keyboard, pedals, and bench. Also because when you record next to the organ, as I did at first, instead of in front of it, the front pipes do not sound as strong because the sound has to travel around the corner. Your recordings sound very direct - if you are too close to the pipe cabinet you can also hear these windy noises when a pipe is accesed (which has a certain charm, mind you).

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 9:58 am 
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Next time I will put the recording stuff downstairs and will see. Yes, can understand that the pipe sounds needs space to travel. Maybe the deep sound comes out better this way too. Thank you much for the hint!

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