Sunday, September 16, 2007
Sunday afternoon gospel--more sacred shellac!
Things are a bit behind schedule at MY(P)WHAE, mainly due to the high ragweed count and my extreme reaction to same. My allergies have slowed me down to sometime last week. I'm fully aware that this is today, September 16, 2007, but awareness doesn't always make it so.
Our sudden switch to fall weather isn't helping, either. Lows were in the 40s last night. Yikes!
All of which has nothing to do with the selections we're about to hear, all of which were ripped from 78s in my modest but (nevertheless) overflowing collection. I'm continuing to discover that sacred 78s are the toughest of all to restore. Why? Not sure, but I think it's mainly the soft dynamics of such sides, which are at odds with the noisy pressings they were joined to. Finding a balance between the music frequencies and the hiss, thump, bump, and pop of the pressings can be quite a task.
And I have NO idea what happened to that last sentence. Let's just pretend it never happened.
At any rate, had most of these been pressed onto quiet surfaces, we'd be marveling at the sheer quality of the sound, especially that of the electric-era Brunswicks.
These twelve tracks were a week-long project--a project made longer when I had to scrap four or five files due to head-shell/cartridge issues. The sudden dB drop should have alerted me to the problem, but it didn't. My reaction was a mere, "Gee, these seem unusually quiet." Duhhh.
Why do I take such pains, you ask? For one reason, and one reason only--I'm nuts. That, and I love these old gospel sides. That helps.
The 1914 gospel classic I'm Going Through, Jesus is much better known as a black gospel number, though it didn't originate as same. There's a great photo of the authors at the awesome Cyberhymnal site. Herbert Buffum wrote several other famous things, including The Old-fashioned Meeting and I'm Going Higher Some Day. As I think about it, I believe I'm Going Through may have been written earlier than 1914, like around 1907. It's possible that 1914 is the year of the revision, if in fact there was one. I'll have to check that out.
And we have two versions of The Old Rugged Cross, which, to me, has always been THE gospel song, possibly because it's the first one I ever heard. And because it keeps turning up and turning up. The more often, the better, I say.
To the shellac:
Click here to reach folder: Sunday Afternoon Gospel.
I'm Going Through, Jesus (Buffum)--William McEwan, 1926.
The Old Rugged Cross (Bennard)--William McEwan, 1926.
If Your Heart Keeps Right (DeArmond-Ackley)--Homer Rodeheaver, 1916.
Brighten the Corner Where You Are (Ogdon-Gabriel)--Homer Rodeheaver, 1916.
Bridge the Road to Heaven with a Smile--Homer Rodeheaver, 1923.
Sweeter as the Years Go By (Morris)--Criterion Quartet, 1926.
Some Blessed Day (Ray-Nevin)--Criterion Quartet, 1926.
The Hymns of the Old Church Choir (Lamb-Solman)--Columbia Quartette, 1907.
Home of the Soul (Phillips)--Columbia Mixed Quartette, 1916.
Beautiful Isle of Somewhere (Ferris)--Columbia Stellar Quartette, 1916.
The Old Rugged Cross (Bennard)--Seth Parker Trio, 1934.
Saved By Grace (Crosby-Stebbins)--Seth Parker Trio, 1934.