At a convention workshop, the presenter recommended several collection
of "free hymn accompaniments" available at the different booths
in the exhibit hall. A naive young organist promptly went looking for these
books and started to walk away with them without paying, after all they
were FREE hymn accompaniments!
THE LOST CHORD Parody
Seated one day at the organ, I was cranky and tired and hot.
Then the choir rehearsal started, but my poor brain did not.
I knew not what I was playing, or what I was dreaming then;
But I struck one note of discord like the sound of a screeching hen--
Like the music of Messiaen.
It cut through the choir's sweet voices like a knife that is sharp and
And it brought to my mind the sound of a pileup on I-15.
The basses began to snicker, the altos joined in with glee.
'Til all eight parts were laughing-- it was SSAATTBB.
I turned five shades of crimson and looked for a place to hide,
But trapped I was with the choir at my left and the audience at my right
I have sought to forget, but vainly, that rumble much maligned.
Which came from the bowels of the organ, but sounded like it came from mine.
It may be that soon I'll live down my feelings of guilt and shame;
It may be that early retirement would ease my sense of pain;
It may be that note will haunt me the rest of my mortal life;
It may be that only in Heaven I shall hear that note played right.
Try playing these selections:
- for the funeral of a butcher: "Sheep May Safely Graze"
for the Sunday when time shifts from Standard to Daylight: "Gottes
Zeit ist der allerbeste Zeit" (God's Time is Best)
for a wedding:
..........."Turn Back Oh Man"
..........."Work for the Night is Coming"
..........."If Ever I Would Leave You"
..........."We've Only Just Begun"
..........."Get Me to the Church on Time"
..........."Herr, ich habe missgehandelt"
(Lord, I have made a mistake)
Answers found on college exams:
- Q. Name two orchestral works by Handel.
A. "The Waterworks" and "The Firewater Suite."
Names of organ manuals:
"So the one thing we know for sure is that some organists play 'Great'
and some play 'Swell.'"
"Are you 'Positive?'"
"I am 'Positive' that some organists even 'Swell' at times and become
'Great' and then their nine-month ordeal suddenly does a 'Solo' and later
joins the 'Choir.' After much 'Portative' transportation, she receives considerable
'Accompaniment' especially when learning to 'Pedal' his/her own transportation."
From Tim Tikker in The Diapason (mid 1970s?)
- 16' Grunt
- 8' Scrape
- 8' Hoot
- 4' Hoot
- 2 2/3' Scratch
- 2' Scratch
- IV Shriek 1 1/3'
- IV Screech 2/3'
- 8' Blatt
- 8' Chuff
- 8' Murmur
- 8' Mumble
- 4' Choof
- 2 2/3' Squeak
- 2' Squeak
- 8' Buzz
- 8' Noise (hideous)
- 32' Woof (wooly)
- 32' Woof (hooty)
- 16' Woof (scraping)
- 8' Scrape (scratchy)
- 8' Hoot
- 4' Scrape
- 2' 4' Moan
- IV Scratch 'n' Sniff
- 32' Pain (frightful)
- 16' Ugly (downright)
Other fictitious stop names:
- 16' Belchhorn
8' Tibia Santa Clausa
1' Piccolo Tuba Miserabalis
- 4' Harmonic Toot
8' Dull Seanna
8' Roar Flute
II Plain Jew
III Fancy Jew
IV Fancy Christian
Max Reger was somewhat given to flatulence. One one occasion he felt
the need to pass wind at the beginning of an organ concert. "No problem,"
he thought, "the concert begins with some big chords on full organ.
I will let it out then and no one will hear." So he pulled out ALL
THE STOPS, and he PLAYED A MASSIVE CHORD, letting out a MASSIVE ---- and
then ... he remembered he had forgotten to turn on the blower switch. [The
audience apparently fell about on the floor laughing.]
Example of how a congregation will go about its business regardless (from
The priest gets to the front of the church and begins the opening
dialogue "The Lord be with you," except no one can hear a thing.
He fiddles around with the microphone pinned to his vestments for a few
moments and then, in an especially loud voice said, "There's something
wrong with this microphone!" Having heard 'something,' the assembly
responded on cue: "And with thy spirit."
- play trackers with unsteady wind have only one swell shoe
- get a paltry remuneration
play same organ week after week
must find new music each week
lead a clean life of servitude
drive their own car
get no billing on a marquee
get blamed for organ ciphers
need to read the week's music
must sit quietly
must play the recessional
- play loudly and break wind in time
- get to pick and choose for 3 bars until they find the shoe they are
- get to push their CD's
- get the organ de jour
- play the same concert for a year
- inhabit sleazy dives to get new arrangements
- drink on airplanes, etc.
- get chauffeured like royalty
- get top, bottom, and sideways sole billing
- playe louder and no one notices
- can fake it
- get to tell the audience jokes
- are first out the door and off to the next gig
Comments heard from the organ tuner while the organist was sitting on
the bench holding keys:
"I can't find it."
"I can't reach it."
"I can't hear it."
"What do mean, there isn't a stop called that on the console?"
"Whoa. Wait till the train has gone by."
"DON'T PLAY WITH THE SWELL PEDALS!"
"Would you believe after all that, it had a moth in it?"
CARPET BEDROOMS, NOT CHURCHES!
- Links I
- Links II
- Organ Humor
- Main Page