Happy Easter

found happiness

I found a cassette I recorded of my brother playing pipe organ yesterday. It seems fitting to post it here for Easter.

Widor: Toccata in F Major

performed by T. Woolard Harris on January 2, 1979

Tech stuff: Recorded on a battery powered Sony cassette deck with two Sony electret battery powered mics, on a Maxell bottom of the line standard cassette with no NR.

Transfered to 24 bits in n-Tracks. Hiss was removed in Adobe Audition. Mastering EQ was done in Har-Bal. That’s about it.

Yes, there’s audible flutter, but it’s not too bad for a cheap cassette that’s over 25 years old. I was very surprised.

It was a happy find for Easter.

Very nice Phoo. It reminds me of stuff I was recording back then on a Marantz stereo cassette deck (also battery powered). The deck I used had both Dolby B and DBX noise reduction.

The later remix with noise reduction you used worked very well. I have old cassettes from back then that have sound bleed from overlapping sections of tape. Man, I hate when that happens.

Nice job on the recording and your brother’s playing is very fine indeed. Did that pipe organ have 16 foot pipes?


Nice job on the recording and your brother's playing is very fine indeed. Did that pipe organ have 16 foot pipes?

I wouldn't swear to it, but I think it has 32 foot pipes. It was one of the better/bigger organs in the area, and was well known as one of the best in the state at that time. It's in a church in Kinston, NC, which is a smaller country town. It was a bit odd for a church in such a place to have an organ like that. My brother was friends with the choirmaster-organist. His first name was Buford. He'd let Tommy play whenever he was back from New York, where my brother was organist. Tommy would bring me along and we go up and look at the pipes and everything. It was really cool.

I'm guessing about the pipes because we talked about it and he'd demonstrate. Tommy would claim the frequency of the low notes could be down below 16 hz and I say we couldn't hear that but we could feel it. His claim was that the big 32 foot pipes would make those tones. But, the organ in Kinston, being what it was, was good for experimentation. It would put out some really deep tones to the point that they weren't really heard. Of course some sounded like low farts, but the ones we were talking about were very sine like and pure down there, not reeds.

I remember seeing pipes that were not straight, but went up to the ceiling and curved back down then took a right angle across the floor. I think these were made of wood and not round, but square. The longest were definitely longer than 16 feet based on old failing memory....but that was a long time ago and what seemed huge back then might not be as big as I remember.

So, yes, it had 16 foot pipes.

Hey, that’s really good, phoo! :) Totally fitting. I once heard the whole 5th Symphony at the end of an Easter service at Valparaiso University - what an organ they have, and the acoustics…wow…

Your brother is very, very good. :)

Coolness phoo! That had to be a great experience finding a nugget like that. Sadly, my siblings can’t play the radio without it going out of tune…and I’m not MUCH better! :p :p