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August 24, 2008
Vol. VIII, No. 8

"No More Mystery Organs!"
Two Rampages back I wrote about a collection of articles I found on Google. That must have been a particularly good week for organ news because when I Googled "pipe organ" this past week I only found one article. Anyway, I checked out the one new article and it was a nice little article about the organ at St. Francis of Assisi Cathedral in Metuchen, New Jersey. But there was no mention of the organ builder, no photos, nothing specific about the organ.
So I Googled the institution and there was no mention of the organ on the Cathedral's website.

To me, that's a reflection of how an institution feels about its organ. When I go to a church's website, I want to see photos of the organ and plenty of them. Granted, a specifications list can be a bit of work but it's not too difficult to write up the history of the organ. This has been one of my pet peeves and you may remember that I wrote a Rampage on this subject a while back:
"What! No Photo?!?" - July 11, 2002

I say fight to get a chunk of your church's website for the organ as well as the rest of your music program. Show how you feel about the organ and use it as an opportunity to drum up more support. A picture's worth a thousand words -- photos, photos and more photos!

I checked back a couple of days later and a new article had appeared on Google. I loved it because it confirmed my Rampage that anyone can have a pipe organ, even people with NO money. It's on the sad side but it's also full of hope.

Pipe organ being built from scratch at East Lake United Methodist Church
"Norris began work on the pipe organ in 2005, collecting pipes from discarded church organs around the country. For a church that has been losing membership and suffering pounding blows for years, the organ has been a source of hope. It helps people forget some of the recent bad news. Grace Garner, 85, a member who lived next-door to the church, was murdered in her house earlier this year. Former Senior Minister Perry Wood, suffering from clinical depression, committed suicide in 2006. But the church, founded in 1887, has soldiered on despite such tragedies, running a Saturday farmer's market in the church parking lot....

Updated Pages
Added is the Organ program at Oklahoma City University although I think they could use even more photos of their organs on their website:

Click this link to read comments and offer your own:

Have a great week!

Dan Long

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