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Thread: Learning to play the pipe organ

  1. #11
    p Piano voet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    West Michigan

    Quote Originally Posted by lcid View Post
    At your age of twenty, you can progress quickly and I also recommend finding a good teacher as soon as possible!
    This is good advice. A good teacher will be able to give you pieces to study that are appropriate for your level and give you the benefit of their acquired knowledge.

    I would also suggest that you get a good method book. Harold Gleason and Roger Davis both have excellent books. While the price for a new copy is quite high, you can probably find a used one for much less. These books contain some organ literature, but they also have graded lists of organ compositions as well as a host of other useful information (ornamentation, historic styles, etc.)

    My home organ: Content M5800

  2. #12
    mf Mezzo-Forte Leisesturm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    45.51° N, -122.60° W

    Quote Originally Posted by Eddy67716 View Post
    The registration is:
    Great: Open Diapason 8, Viol 8, Stopped Diapason 8, Salicional 8, etc.
    That is not the registration, that is the stoplist. The precise terminology of any art should be important to its practitioners. You are innately musical. Good. You can go very far if you get into good practice habits. Who can argue with the advice to get a good teacher, but as one for whom that was simply impossible. Absolutely, utterly, impossible. I am satisfied that I did not simply give up because of that. I grew up in a Brooklyn ghetto long before there was anything called the Internet. A motivated individual in 2018 can learn tons from the video courses that are archived on sites like YouTube and the instructional material that has been compiled by entities like the Church of Latter Day Saints, and especially the American Guild of Organists. There are also subscription courses online that can work out to 1/4 to 1/8 of the price of lessons with a local instructor. I'm pretty sure that the Gleason book is a circulating item in my local library system. I've seen Flor Peeters' and David N. Johnson's beginning organ instruction manuals in library systems I have had membership in. I don't know what key your improvisation on "Amazing Grace" was in, but I don't think the drones were in the right key to support it. It kind of worked, but listen to some more YouTube's of real Highland Bagpipes and pay close attention to how real bagpipes work out the relationship between the melody and the drones. Why it matters: listening well, and being informed by said listening is at least 50% of success in music. Good luck.


  3. #13
    Moderator myorgan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    New England

    Quote Originally Posted by Eddy67716 View Post
    I also have heard that swell expression is also a difficult thing to learn.

    Don't worry about learning Swell expression. Very little Classical music requires the use of any Swell pedal on an instrument during the performance of a piece. Notable exceptions to this are the Romantic (specifically French Romantic), and some 20thc. organ transcriptions, and maybe some original pieces.

    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

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