As I wrote, I won’t be posting daily, but I will post every so often.

Gibbons: This is the Record of John

Sung by the Maxim Family as part of the Advent Carol Service from Great Malvern Priory 29 November 2020

I won’t be posting daily, but I will definitely attempt to post on Sundays, and I’ll put things up when I find the time to post other advent music.

Veni, Veni Emmanuel
The Gesualdo Six | Owain Park

Traditional, arranged by Philip Lawson

Recorded September 2014

The Gesualdo Six | Owain Park

Patrick Dunachie, Guy James – Countertenor
Joseph Wicks, Hiroshi Amako – Tenor
Michael Craddock – Baritone
Jonathan Pacey – Bass

Shortly after I got into San Jose Symphony (RIP) I became music librarian, and I also worked in the box office for a time. At one point the organization’s offices moved to the basement of the building pictured here. It was a windowless and rather dreary place, but I did love some of my colleagues there.

Today the building is being demolished. Some group tried to stop it, saying that it was part of the “Brutalist Period” or some such thing. They lost. So down it goes. I can’t say I’m sorry. It’s not exactly a gorgeous thing. But seeing it and thinking about those days I did have a flood of memories come pouring back, and I wonder where some of the people are that worked there way back when. I lost touch with nearly everyone.

(These photos are a bit crooked but I’m lazy and so they will just remain crooked!)

The oboe embouchure can differ from person to person. I am a “corners forward,” “flat chin,” and “less reed!” sort. If you look at videos on YouTube you will find many who play with gobs of reed in their mouth (my sound is horrible then!). I simply can’t play with what I call a “bunchy chin” yet I see others who do that. I just heard from Barry Kroeker (Hi Barry! Very nice to “meet” you.) and I’m with him on embouchure, so I’m sharing his video here.

I think those who play on a short scrape reed might do things very differently: I play, of course, on the longer, American scrape. I think this might also be the reason that you see many of us here play with our oboes closer to our bodies, while those in other countries play with their oboes further out … some nearly like trumpets. But having never played on a short scrape I’m only guessing on that.