Crack organist/organist on crack

This was e-mailed to me today – apologies if you’ve already seen it, but it’s too good not to post. Apparently, this is from a recording of an amateur choral society’s performance of the Messiah; but the organist was a professional hired for the occasion. I hope they got their money back. To their immense credit the choir don’t flinch for a second in the face of some of the most extraordinary chords this side of Messiaen. (For full impact, this is best heard with a bit of volume.) Current thinking is that something went wrong with a digital transpose key (did they hire Van Halen’s sound engineer?), but I guess we’ll never know.

Messiahorganistoncrack.mp3 (667K mp3)

Edit: this snippet has taken on something of a life of its own since this post – hell, it’s even been YouTubed. (This video isn’t the original organist, in case you’re confused.)

12 thoughts on “Crack organist/organist on crack

  1. As a former professional church organist – the only thing I can say is that nothing has made me laugh harder all day.

    I think the thing that is most amazing is that the two next to last chords are REPEATED – I can maybe forgive one being wrong – but to play them twice – wow.

    That is what I call entertainment of the highest order.

  2. That’s just a kid at a computer playing along with a recording of a choir. He is not playing live with the singers, so the choir does not deserve “immense credit”.

  3. This has nothing to do with a digital transpose function on a keyboard. This is done on an organ by someone who, I’m willing to bet, found it as absolutely fucking hilarious as I do.

    I’m a professional pianist/organist. Believe me. Accidents like this don’t just “happen.”

  4. Accidents like this certainly do happen. Some organs assign the transposer functions to thumb pistons (those little white buttons below the keys), which are ordinarily used to recall preset stop combinations. Obviously the organist in this recording was trying to bring on more stops for the final chords and hit one of the transpose buttons by mistake. What’s astonishing is that he or she kept playing while trying to correct the error.

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