Easter 2024

23 December 2005
Eve - Christmas, 2005

Christmas Eve Alleluia excerpt

Anglican Use Gradual, page 27

22 December 2005
singing - God

How often do we read from Zephaniah? And how often do we think about God singing?

The LORD, your God, is in your midst, a warrior who gives victory; he will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

Zephaniah 3:17 (NRSV, emphasis added)

In Hebrew, the line "he will renew you" literally means "he will be silent."

Then, as an opposite to God's silent love, or perhaps growing out of it comes this incredible Singing of God.

This brings to mind something I read in Hans Davidsson's dissertation on Matthias Weckmann involving the organ of God. If I remember correctly, God was a 128' stop: a creative and fundamental force. Literally, this 128' stop served as the foundation for the creation of the world (i.e., the rest of the organ).

Like the power of this extremely deep, rumbly stop, it was the power of God's spoken word that brought the earth into existence. What manner of creativity and Joy would be brought about by God's sung word?

Answer: We read from Zephaniah (3:14-17) at the Easter Vigil and Advent 3C. Gaudete indeed!

Seattle - Contractors General

SeattleDon't ask me how I discovered this (because I can't remember?), but is listed on The best place for information on - Contractors General Seattle.

It's almost at the bottom of the page. (You can just search the page for "Sinden")

It's kind of a ridiculous place, this weird link portal vaguely related to construction. I don't know whom it's meant for.

And yet, there's everyone's favorite website for "Organ music and sacrilegious liturgics," right between a Quebec bridal shop and a love poem written by a guy named Love.

Tangent: Look Mel, if I can't sit through your teaser trailer, I am not going to see your movie. It's a ridiculous teaser, and I don't know whom it's meant for.

21 December 2005
quint - instant yeast as

Fleischmann's YeastIf my Fleischmanns instant yeast were an organ stop, it would sound a fifth higher than regular yeast.

I realized this looking at the conversion table on the back of the package.

I performed a conversion of my own by replacing ounces with feet.

Here are the results:
Conventional YeastInstant YeastFundamentalQuint
4 oz.2 2/3 oz.4' Octave2-2/3' Nasard
8 oz.5 1/3 oz.8' Montre5-1/3' Grosse Nasard
1 lb.10 2/3 oz.16' Montre10-2/3' Basse Quinte
3 lb.1 lb.48' ???16' Montre

20 December 2005
mp3 - Intonation on Puer Nobis

Intonation on Puer Nobis [mp3 3.9MB] by David Sinden
for oboe and strings (two violins, viola, violoncello and contrabass)

Recorded live 11 December 2005 at St. Thomas Lutheran, Bloomington

2005 - best of, the

This year, occasionally took on a serious tone to note a few things, notably the ordination of James Tramel, death of Mitch Hedberg and the murder of Brother Roger.

And we don't know how good it is, yet, but this year also saw the creation of Lectionary Psalms.

That a California inmate, a comedian from Minnesota, French spiritual leader, and weekly texts from the Hebrew Bible all share space under one roof serves as a testament to the diversity of this site.

Here's some of the best that diversity has to offer:


17 December 2005
Adams, Byron - evensong music of

All Saints windowComposer Byron Adams had a whole slew of his sacred choral music performed at an Evensong at All Saints, Beverly Hills in October. The Choir at All Saints is fairly well recorded (especially as heard on Hymns Through the Ages) and is one of my favorite American church choirs, so this is recommended listening.

The performances are downloadable in seven MP3s.

  1. Introit: My Eyes for Beauty Pine - A simple strophic SATB setting. For the second verse, the lower parts "oo."
  2. Preces & Responses - Possibly the strongest work of the set. This work is firmly grounded in historical models, and Adams's predilection for sequences only helps him here. This is hard stuff to write, and it really comes off very well.
  3. Psalm 121 (Anglican Chant) - This is pretty, though perhaps a little angular seeming upon first hearing. This performance gets a little sloppy in the middle (it's good to know that they are human too), but is mostly very well sung. The quiet Gloria is very effective.
  4. Magnificat - After "generations," the organ introduces a rhythmic flutter into the otherwise staid choral motion. "He has scattered" is set to a nice SA duet. The unison statement of the beginning of the Gloria is really stellar; my only quibble is that this performance makes the high A sound a little forced.
  5. Nunc Dimittis - A noble, sweeping tune performed by organ and solo tenor. The choir joins for Gloria. This Gloria starts the same way as the pretty one in the Mag, but is slowed down and softened. It is much more subdued (no high A here). The solo tenor "Amen" is a real unexpected treat and a nice way to recap the opening of the Nunc.
  6. Anthem: Praises of Jerusalem - This work is published by ECS. It's easy to hear the elements of his style at this point in the Evensong. Like the upward rising sequence. That works, but it comes back a lot. I think in general, the harmonic rhythm of the choral writing in this work is too consistent. Those parts are very harmonically conceived, whereas the active, substantial organ part tends to be a little more linear. It would be nice if the two found a way to switch roles once in a while. "Peace be within thy walls," is well set, but after hearing his setting of "My eyes for beauty pine" you have to wonder if he is even more obsessed with Howells than I am.
  7. Hymn: CARITAS. I really wanted to like this hymn, and I think I almost could have, but the reference to Friedell's "Draw Us In the Spirit's Tether" was just too much. And immediately before that, you have elements of DOWN AMPNEY (let alone the fact that the rhythm of the whole hymn is nearly identical).

Music sung at Taize services at All Saints, Beverly Hills, is, if not of one composer, certainly in one style. So, doing an Evensong in the style of a single composer is not really a departure for them. In fact, it gives to the service a special kind of stylistic unity. This effort is admirable, and the church should be highly commended for making recordings freely available.

Byron Adams is a professor of music at University of California Riverside.

Labels: ,

yeah - elephants

Elephant.  Yeah.NPR's World of Opera is broadcasting Rigoletto this afternoon.

I can't listen to Act III without thinking about elephants

So what's that phrase that he's singing anyway? I think it's "e di pensiero."

Tangent: Umm, how many legs does the elephant pictured above have?

12 December 2005
Alaska - organ jobs in

Alaska man!There's an interesting thing that sometimes happens to me when I learn a new word. Somehow, the cosmos align and I am in the midst of a confluence of usages of that word. I hear it spoken and read it in print. This happened with the word "amalgam" a while back.

This also happens with composers for me. Most recently with Felix Borowski.

What I think of as a phenomenon is simply my perception coloring otherwise unremarkable events.

For instance, sometimes the local news anchor on the public radio station will trip up over some words, and then the national news anchor, hundreds of miles away, will make a similar mistake. It's seems to me like there's something in the air. But for a listener in Peoria (of the "how will it play in Peoria" fame) nothing seems remarkable about the national anchor's blunder.

I really want a name for this phenomenon. Suggestions?

Lately this confluence phenomenon has been happening with a geographic location: Alaska. It's just popping up all over the place for me. I'm interpreting this as a sign.

Are there organ jobs in Alaska? Good ones? Maybe I should move there.

10 December 2005
Nine Lessons and Carols - Service of, 2005 (Preview)

King's, snowyEarly!

Kings College, Cambridge, England, has just posted the order for this year's Service of Nine Lessons and Carols. You can get it in PDF format on the Nine Lessons and Carols page.

My initial reactions:

Evacuation Routes and Procedures on Page 2. Very hot.

Flor Peeters makes an appearance in the Prelude. That seems new.

Who's R. Jaques? Has King's done that In Dulci Jublio before?

O. Goldschmidt? That's not familiar either. The lack of first names is getting annoying already.

The medieval carol, "Edi beo thu" looks like fun.

Ahh! Warlock I don't know! That should be fun.

The author's last name is Ballet? Weird. And who is D. Blackford?

I love the Gardiner. It will be nice to hear King's sing it. I think perhaps a chart of recent services should be prepared so that we can see if they have sung any of these pieces before.

WOW! A Tavener setting of "Away in a manger." An unusual text for him. The commissioned carol this year. This should be very interesting.

And new Cleobury, "Be merry, be merry . . ."

The Bach setting interests me. I don't know about the pairing of the Magnificat BWV 243 with this text. Heck, there's a lot I don't know. Maybe I should move to England.

Postlude: Francis Pott?

Okay. Lots of names I don't know, and some things I am really excited about hearing. This service represents the best of liturgy, I think. Something that is grounded in history and tradition and yet always adapted to the time at hand.

This is really poorly written, I know. But at least you know the document is available, and maybe you're wondering about the same things I am.


04 December 2005
McDermott, Dan - dunderhead


Most of the students at Tanglewood came from Indiana University. Thousands of students graduate from Indiana majoring in clarinet, violin or voice, to name a few disciplines, every year. Yes, they do know how to read, but they can't balance a checkbook or operate a computer any better than the average athlete.

McDermott, Dan. "If a Student Can Major in Piano, Why Can' t a Player Major in Passing?" NY Times 4 December 2005.

Wow, what do you know, I go to Indiana University!

I really wish I knew how to operate a computer. Because if I did I might:

  1. Turn it on
  2. "operate" it

And whilst operating it, I might:

  1. Determine that your name is Daniel J. McDermott, you live in Sussex, Wisconsin and that my readers can call you at (262) 246-9770
  2. Call you names:
    • dunderhead
    • nincompoop
    • dingbat
  3. Access the internet
  4. Post said names to the internet for all to see
  5. Further ridicule your nonsensical sports page article thusly:

    You seem to believe that university orchestras charge for concerts. We at Indiana, land of the balanced check book, do not. Students and the general public attend free of charge.

    I see bacchanalian refuse on my way to play Bach.

    All students at Indiana, however, are charged a $30 dollar athletics fee to support athletic activity that is associated with reckless alcohol consumption. (I would know. I see the bacchanalian refuse on my way to play Bach.)

    Meanwhile, a gift of $40 million dollars is given to the Music School at said institution.

    Football is brutal and violent associated with what you call, "pain, injury and effort." That's great. I call it destructive, superficial, fleeting.

    Music, however, I would define as "constructive, spiritual, lasting."

    People benefit from a lifetime of involvement with Music. Perhaps that's why there's a School.

    A lifetime of participation with football would be a short, painful lifetime indeed. To answer the question posed in the title of your article, perhaps that's why there's no Football School and no passing major.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go balance my checkbook.

Oh wait, I already did.

comedy career - the "Advent" of Marilyn Keiser's

MKFrom "An Advent Festival of Lessons and Carols," at Trinity Episcopal Church, Bloomington where Marilyn Keiser is Director of Music and Organist:

Second Lesson: Jeremiah 31:33-34
[A new covenant is promised which will be written in our hearts]
read by Michael Wade, Professor of Biology, Indiana University

Third Lesson: Jeremiah 23:5-6
[The Lord promieses to send his people the righteous King]
read by James McNamara, Deputy Mayor, City of Bloomington

03 December 2005
bud - hey

bell ringerGoing to Kmart is always an adventure (last time, I saw Jesus parked there) because Kmart is weird and a prime location of social awkwardness.

I'm always tempted by their low prices (the Kmart near me seems to be perpetually going out of business) but repelled by the emptiness, bad lighting, and weird people.

Also, Target is just as close, and they have better design. I feel more anonymous at Target. Kmart has so few customers that I guess I'm given special treatment by those who think themselves part of the Kmart family.

And the Kmart family is made up of those annoying relatives that you're not even that related to.

Anyway, back to the matter at hand. As I get out of my parked car, I here a voice.

"Hey bud, your lights are on."

Now, as a way of explanation, let me say that my stylish '93 Ford Crown VicLand-Yacht has automatic headlights: they come on when it gets dark, and go off after a fixed amount of time after you get out of the car.

The timer is a safety/convenience feature. At summer camp, the full three minutes is useful after parking the car in the darkness and having to walk to the tents. So, I just leave it set at the maximum (three minutes) all the time. Plus it weirds people out.

But COME ON! My car is almost 13 years old. Was it the only model to do this? (If so, I might cling to it forever). Surely other automatic headlights have this feature, and surely people use it. So in the past decade, hasn't seeing someone get out of their car with the headlights still on become commonplace?

Apparently no. And the consensus seems to be that helping someone possibly avert a dead battery takes precedence over an assumption about an automatic headlight feature.

I can appreciate this. It's good to know that people are looking out for each other.

But, back to the matter at hand, "hey bud?" I think not. Since when have I been your "bud?" What a crude greeting.

And it doesn't stop there:

DECLARATIVE: your lights are on

Granted, my automotive vocabulary allows me to contextualize the statement "your lights are on" and interpret it as concern for my vehicular health.

But that didn't stop me from thinking about returning with: "Hey bud, your lights are off."

I would much prefer Hoosier Harry to have said, "Pardon me, do you know that your lights are on?"

INTERROGATIVE: Do you know that your lights are on?

Maybe I've thought about this too much. I've certainly written too much about it.

Then as I walked to the entrance of Kmart proper, my approach was heralded with the incessant ringing of a shrill, piercing bell. A costumed militant was collecting money.

A costumed militant was collecting money

As a poor student, I've been trained to look out for people who want my money (other students, cashiers, girlfriends) and avoid them when possible.

I tried the making-eye-contact-so-he-knows-I-see-him-and-doesn't-have-to-get-my-attention approach. This method is tried and true. I have a powerful gaze and can let people know that I am not interested in their collection scheme, free credit card, or flyer that I will immediately throw away with a direct, powerful stare.

"Hi," he said.

I was crestfallen. Now, I could barely hear him over the bell, but I thought his greeting was really offensive.

How can I not know he's there? That bell -- I'm telling you -- it was seriously loud. And he's standing right by the entrance. What am I going to do, go in the exit?

We're not friends, so the only reason you have to say "hi" to me is to alert me to your presence. This is unnecessary.

"Donations are going to be down because of the hurricanes," I thought about saying, but I don't think he would have heard me. Or cared.

"Ring bell, get money, ring bell, get money," he was probably thinking.

Not to mention that the bell was seriously loud. He's ringing it outside, but right under the overhang of the building, so all that sound is just reflected right down at him. Hearing damage would start right away with a job like that. Not fun.

He didn't really need my money. If I had really been on top of things, I would have given him a small bag on my way back to my car (my headlights have since turned themselves off).

"Hey bud, try some ear plugs."

Tangent: The driver of a Ferrari in Paris had his lights on when Grand Theft Auto was real back in the 1970s. Keep an eye out for La Trinité.

I mean, it's Kmart. How long can you spend in there? If you can stay inside of a Kmart long enough to kill your car battery, you're a weirder person than I am. Maybe that's the real issue here.

02 December 2005
tempi - varying, Bach Cantata 140, mvt 4

Gardiner recordingThe following is quality musicological research with the iTunes Music Store:

Length of J.S. Bach's Cantata 140, fourth movement ("Zion Hört Die Wächter Singen") on different recordings:
TimeConductorDate of recording
3:49John Eliot GardinerOct 2000
3:51Helmuth RillingFeb 1974
4:39Felix ProhaskaJune 1998
5:49Robert ShawSep 2001
5:56Karl RichterOct 1990

Consider: Wake up! Zion doesn't hear the watchperson singing whilst asleep! Hearing is not a passive activity, and the cantata has already implored us to awake.

Conclusion: faster is better.

Implications: Schubler Chorale Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme, S. 645

News - Sindens in the, pastoral installation officiate

This week (not that "Sindens in the News" is a weekly feature by any means), SitN hits a little close to home.

Officiates at the Installation included:

Organist David L. Sinden, St.Thomas Evangelical Lutheran Church, Bloomington, IN

New pastor takes helm of Lutheran church from, website of the Brown County Democrat



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Advent (Medfield MA)
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St James's (Richmond VA)
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St Mary's Cathedral (Memphis TN)
St Matthew and St Timothy (NYC)
St Paul's (Cleveland Heights OH)
St Paul's (Indianapolis IN)
St Paul's Cathedral (Buffalo NY)
St Paul's, K Street (Washington DC)
St Peter's (Lakewood OH)
St Peter's ELCA (NYC)
St Stephen's (Richmond VA
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Second PCUSA (Indianapolis IN)
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St Thomas (New York NY)


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