Christmas… it came, it went. It came out of nowhere. And just as quickly, is a thing of the past… But it was fun!
But there is proof that it did happen…
So what did I get for Christmas this year? Gold! No, not the actual metal that costs a ton of $$$$, but Gold… for an organ buff like me… Books and CD’s!!!! (what else would I want for Christmas???)
The Complete Organ Works of Adriaan C. Schuurman
My parents got me BOTH volumes one and two of Dutchman Adriaan Schuurman’s complete organ works. Played on Dutch instruments and by two Dutch performers, these 4 CD’s have been a real treat! I love exploring new music!
I have very little music by Dutch organists (partly because of the very little they write down, and the very limited availability of such music here in the US).
Die Cavaillé-Coll/Mutin Orgel im Dom zu Osnabrück
This is a wonderful recording of the FIRST Cavaillé-Coll organ to be installed in Germany! And also unique in that this is a TINY 2-manual 15 stop instrument. One of the smallest organs in my music collection. And the acoustics in this setting… oh wow….
So Dominique Sauer plays this little instrument and plays it in such a way that you forget the tiny size of this instrument- as it sounds fill the space of the church only too well… Some familiar and fun works, and some new stuff on here too!
Sietze de Vries – Geneefse Psalmen
Ok, this CD is a diamond, forget gold… This 3-day-old addition to my collection has already been listened to…. MULTIPLE times!
Sietze de Vries is an incredibly gifted improviser and this CD showcases that! Here he improvises on Genevan Psalms (what else?) and is accompanied by a choir.
Also it is recorded on the Müller organ at the Grote of Jacovijnerkerk in Leeuwarden, The Netherlands. An incredible instrument!
Transcriptions in Cologne!
(on back order haven’t received it yet… sadly)
I’ve heard one track off of this CD through Pipedreams, and that was enough to convince me that I had to get the album. Even if it meant getting just that track.
Winfried Bönig plays on the (not one) but 2 organs in the large reverberant space of the Cologne Cathedral, Germany. For any stereo this is a sonic force to be reckoned with… I can’t wait to get this CD!
Organ Music of René Louis Becker
New music! Played on an interesting organ in France. The composer of these works was born in France and moved to the U.S. as a young man. He lived the the St. Louis area for years and then moved to Michigan.
I’ve never heard these works, or this organ before!The organ is actually a rebuild by Cavaillé-Coll, but retains a lot of the characteristics of a French classical organ… It has a bit of a brighter sound… Explore, explore, explore!
The Romantic Piano Concerto, Vol. 55 ~ Widor
Ok, so why is this on a list with organ stuff?!?! Because the composer of these magnificent works for piano and orchestra is none other than Charles-Marie Widor! In this day and age, hardly any of Widor’s NON-organ works are known. Do a search and most of what you are going to come up with is his ten organ symphonies…
It is refreshing to hear some non-organ music by my most favorite composer. I can also say it really shows Widor’s talent as a composer. I only hope that in the future more of his non-organ works will make their way into the “mainstream” classical circles… I want more!
and now… for the Pièce de résistance…
Widor: A Life beyond the Toccata
by John R. Near
I’ve been waiting for this book for years! This is a biography on Charles-Marie Widor, my favorite French composer.
It started as Dr. Near’s doctoral dissertation at Boston University in 1982, and he was encouraged to keep researching and put out a biography… well here it is! And much thanks to my wife, here it is in my hands!!!!!
So once again I got spoiled!
(Add on top of that I was able to replace my almost 6-year-old-dying-iPod with a new 160GB iPod, so now I can carry ALL my music around with me…)
((And, by-the-way, that brings my Organ CD collection up to 296 CD’s!!!))