Cameron Carpenter has recently announced a 40-concert tour of dedicated elderly homes throughout Germany sharing the music of J.S. Bach. This Blog would like to applaud his efforts and hopes other organists follow suit by providing music to these at-risk communities throughout the world. Through his exciting interpretation of these much-cherished works, hopefully Mr. Carpenter is able to reach a wider demographic and bring new devotees to the instrument. While Mr. Carpenter’s playing alone is exciting, the organ’s sound is something that also attracts people to the instrument. What is more exciting than sitting in a cathedral and hearing the organ brought to full crescendo? The tone generation of the vehicle in which Mr. Carpenter is presenting offers a unique sound. It is up to the listener to judge whether or not it sounds like any pipe they have heard. Does this model-based organ sound like the great German pipe organs from builders such as Schnitger, Silbermann, or Sauer. Instead of taking an egotistical approach to sound reproduction through modeling the sound, why not take a literal snap-shot of the instrument and accurately reproduce the sound and character of these great instruments?

3 thoughts on “Cameron Carpenter and the Current Touring Organ

  1. If it were an Allen,it would do his music and playing justice!

  2. Bearing in mind that much of the excellence of a Pipe Organ (or Allen) is the BUILDING – playing in the open air can never be expected to be comparable.

    I’ve heard 2 almost identical Allen setups – one with good acoustics, the other with low ceilings – there is no comparison.

    And – we don’t know the quality of the recording equipment. Recording a Pipe Organ is quite different from recording a Rock Band.

    1. I think you are missing the point of the article. If we are constantly making excuses for the sound, has the instrument or installation really done its job? While a recording technique or organ voicing can improve the final result, it cannot make up for improper or missing parts of the pipe sound being duplicated/created.

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