The Key of David

While I was in Chicago last month (to give a slew of pre-concert lectures for the symphony), I took one evening to record a piece that’s been in need of a recording for quite a while now, “O Clavis David,” for choir and organ:

As to the recording session itself, all I can say is, if you hire the right people, you’ll get a good product, and thankfully I had a friend who knew all the right people to hire.

Of course, where organs are concerned you don’t just need the right person playing (which I had) but you also need the right person to record (ditto) and you darn well better make sure you’ve got a quality instrument in an excellent acoustic.

This recording was made at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Evanston, which boasts a blazing hot E. M. Skinner organ. When I walked into the church and heard the organist practicing his part, I practically thought he was going to knock my ears off my head.

Luckily he pulled it back (just a little) for the session, but saints alive is that a phenomenal instrument. The piece was written for the Flentrop organ at St. Mark’s in Seattle, which couldn’t be more different, but that’s the thing with writing for the organ — you do your best to make a piece that will work in many different settings, because you never know what you’re going to get.