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New recording every Tuesday
  Index of MP3 recordings

The Rest is Silence

(how silence is important to music--and sanity!)

Looks Like it Sounds--or, those bizarre squiggles we call music. 

       Why do we write music the way we do and is it actually the best method? Dare we ask?  

Part Two 
(mock some sages, clefs for me)

 Don't your fingers get tired?

A question and answer page for the curious...

this is supposed to be a picture of some dude playing the piano in front of a stained glass window!
 Wedding pages
These are some of my former piano students from Baltimore. Can't see them? sorry about that.
 for students:
 Musical Games 

 Erasmus's blog:
In Praise of Chicken

 Mike's Ballpark
 hotdog review

The Global
Hall of Fame

This week's featured recording:

We Gather Together
by Michel Marteau

There once was a holiday called Thanksgiving, before it was called Trample Your Fellow Creatures to get to the Incredible Savings before Christmas Day. This is the theme of the talk I gave at last year's Thanksgiving dinner (at our church). After the commentary, you can listen to a nice Thanksgiving hymn being upstaged and abused by various Christmas carols, who, like many of us, simply have not got the ability to wait...


We Gather Together          
(this will be followed by an 'encore' from the blog entry below)
upcoming events:
   Sunday, Nov. 29  podcast conversation with organist Vidas Pinkevicius on his blog, "Secrets of Organ Playing"
   Saturday, Dec. 5, 3:00 pm  Central Illinois Children's Chorus   Faith UMC 1719 S. Prospect Rd. Champaign, Illinois
New on the Blog   (week of Nov. 24)  
from the concert hall... Monday 11/16/15
The goblins are back
Did they ever go away?
from the teaching studio... Wednesday 11/18/15
Organ registration survival tips (part two)
how not to make a scary noise in church
from the organ bench... Friday 11/20/15
Authorized fire?
Offerings in and out of season
For Nov. 24:

from the blog...

Monday, November 17, 2014


Poor Thanksgiving. Being an American national holiday, it isn't even celebrated in most of the world, and in the one country--my own--where it has found a home, it gets squeezed between Halloween and Christmas, both of which have become more commercially useful and involve candy and goodies rather than boring old nutrient-rich food. And while some churches actually hold special services for this holiday, every pastor I've worked with in recent memory would just like it to go away. It is, after all, not part of the church calendar. And it is also a violation of the separation of church and state--though in this case, in favor of the church.

Thanksgiving seems like an important concept, too. For one thing, people don't spend much time on gratitude without being heavily encouraged. For another, the thanks being given is supposed to be tied to the yearly harvest, which is sort of important for a species that likes to be able to eat.

Since the day itself has just become another excuse to trample each other at the mall (Christmas shopping, you know), it seems like maybe the only recourse is to extend the Thanksgiving season a bit, start early, like all the other aggressive holidays. So this post's a week early; Thanksgiving itself isn't until a week from Thursday.

And who do we have for a spokesman? Mr. Edvard Grieg, with a simple piece from his set of "Lyric Pieces"--entitled simply "Thanks,"

Oh dear, I'm afraid that won't do. I was looking for something more attention grabbing. How on earth is anybody going to notice a holiday without flashing lights and lots of loud, zany acrobatics? How indeed. Well, Thanksgiving comes anyway. Blink and you'll miss it.

By the way, I'm thankful for my audio software, which allowed me to edit out some very long pauses between sections while I waited for the sirens and the very loud truck and bus to go away. You are too.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Grieg: Thanks, from Lyric Pieces, book seven, number two