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Decker Plays Decker, Vol. 3

Decker
Release Date: 11/13/2012 
Label:  Loft Recordings   Catalog #: 1130   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 7 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



DECKER On This Day, Earth Shall Ring. El Tigre. La Pantera. Liturgical Suite. Ave maris stella. Jesu, Dulcis Memoria. Golden Gates Pamela Decker (org) LOFT LRCD 1130 (66:47)


Pamela Decker, the professor of organ and music theory at the University of Arizona, is also the organist at Grace St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Tucson. She is not only a top-flight organist, but a talented composer as well. On this disc we have her compositions, some of which are based on well-known themes. Others are completely Read more original. On This Day, Earth Shall Ring is made up of five hymn-based pieces for Advent and Christmas. The first, Nun Komm, der Heiden Heiland (Now Come, Savior), has words by Martin Luther and a tune that may have originated with St. Ambrose. Johann Sebastian Bach used it in cantatas BWV 61 and 62. Decker takes the basic theme and immediately restates it in 21st-century terms. Then, she reinvents the familiar advent song, Veni, Veni, Emmanuel, (O come, o come, Emmanuel), a 15th-century plainsong melody that was made into a hymn by Thomas Helmore in 1854. Personent Hodie is a 16th-century Finnish Christmas carol. The titles Cranham and Antioch refer to 19th-century hymn tunes, also known as In the Bleak Midwinter and Joy to the World, which Decker updates in her inimitable style. El Tigre and La Pantera are totally original pieces. Decker’s Tigre emerges from William Blake’s “forests of the night” as a lover, a father who watches his cubs play, and most importantly, a provider of meat for all. Her Pantera is most imaginative. Starting out as a prelude and fugue, the piece becomes a melodic dance that celebrates the animal’s stealth and strength. The Liturgical Suite for Organ Right Hand and Pedal is dedicated to Mark Thallander, the organ editor of the Fred Bock Music Company who lost an arm in an accident. The suite is appropriate for the season that extends from Lent to Pentecost. Herzliebster Jesu (Beloved Jesus) is a 17th-century German Lenten hymn. Her second selection, Erschienen ist der herrlich Tag (The Glorious Day Has Dawned), celebrates the mysteries of Easter, and Veni Creator is a hymn dedicated to Pentecost. Listening to the recording you have no way of knowing that she performs all this music without using her left hand. It’s a tour de force for her just as it must be for the lucky dedicatee.


Ave maris stella (Hail, Star of the Sea) is a Marian song seldom heard in the desert around Tucson, but it makes a fine jumping off point for Decker’s inventive, postromantic variations, In Jesu, Dulcis Memoria (Jesus, the very Thought of Thee), the meditative prelude and exciting fugue are separate, unlike the pair in La Pantera . Decker’s fugue has all the fireworks one could possibly envision. It definitely could send the congregation out into the wider world on a jubilant note. Golden Gates is Decker’s musical description of San Francisco’s ethnic diversity. She uses Asian and Hispanic themes in her fusion of the many cultures of the Pacific Rim city. She played all this music on the 1965 Flentrop organ at St. Mark’s Cathedral, Seattle, in June 2012, and the sound on the recording is glorious. For organ fans, there is a complete description of the instrument and its workings in the booklet. If you are at all interested in modern organ music, you will want this recording.


FANFARE: Maria Nockin
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Works on This Recording

1. On ths Day, Earth Shall Ring, for organ by Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker (Organ)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 2009 
Venue:  St. Mark's Cathedral, Seattle, Washingto 
Length: 14 Minutes 13 Secs. 
2. El Tigre, for organ by Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker (Organ)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 2007 
Venue:  St. Mark's Cathedral, Seattle, Washingto 
Length: 10 Minutes 20 Secs. 
3. La Pantera, for organ by Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker (Organ)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 2009 
Venue:  St. Mark's Cathedral, Seattle, Washingto 
Length: 8 Minutes 58 Secs. 
4. Liturgical Suite, for organ, right hand & pedal by Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker (Organ)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 2005 
Venue:  St. Mark's Cathedral, Seattle, Washingto 
Length: 9 Minutes 25 Secs. 
5. Ave maris stella, for organ by Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker (Organ)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 2004 
Venue:  St. Mark's Cathedral, Seattle, Washingto 
Length: 8 Minutes 0 Secs. 
6. Jesu, dulcis memoria, for organ by Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker (Organ)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 2010 
Venue:  St. Mark's Cathedral, Seattle, Washingto 
Length: 7 Minutes 35 Secs. 
7. Golden Gates, for organ by Pamela Decker
Performer:  Pamela Decker (Organ)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 2010 
Venue:  St. Mark's Cathedral, Seattle, Washingto 
Length: 7 Minutes 27 Secs. 

Sound Samples

On this Day, Earth Shall Ring: I. Num komm, der Heiden Heiland
On this Day, Earth Shall Ring: II. Veni, veni, Emmanuel
On this Day, Earth Shall Ring: III. Personent hodie
On this Day, Earth Shall Ring: IV. Cranham
On this Day, Earth Shall Ring: V. Antioch
El Tigre (version for organ)
La Pantera
Liturgical Suite: I. Lent: Herzliebster Jesu
Liturgical Suite: II. Easter: Erschienen ist der herrlich Tag
Liturgical Suite: III. Pentecost: Veni Creator
Ave maris stella
Jesu, dulcis memoria
Golden Gates

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