Sunday, April 30, 2006

IS THE "GEE-TAR" REALLY THAT BAD?

Hat tip once again to Gerald!

Off the Record thinks so!

As for me - well: I love a good rock guitar. I am a big time classic rock and power pop fan. That is, in the secular world! I wouldn't touch these styles in church. At least not in a Catholic church. Truthfully, I wouldn't mind listening to Joe and Mike rock out at a youth meeting. Those guys do quite well. However, they also know and respect the difference between musical qualities useful to a youth meeting in the parish hall and musical qualities useful to Holy Mass.

Now, I did mention quite a while back, probably close to a year ago at this point, that not all guitars are bad at Holy Mass. I can justify a well-picked classical guitar, especially as part of a good ensemble. Well-played, it can sound as good as, let's say, a harp! Incidentally, one of my tenors, Bryce (son of Jude, who is one of my sopranos), is studying classical guitar. But, anyhoo, I would have no problem with a good classical guitar played for, let's say, The Call, which is from the Five Mystical Songs of Ralph Vaughan Williams. The same with some of the works of Alexander Peloquin.

Would I say the same about the folksy strumming a la the Saint Louis Jesuits or the Minnesota Trinity? No. I'll keep it at that so my positive remarks outweigh my negative remarks HA HA HA!

Peace,
BMP

3 comments:

Dave said...

If you visit my blog, you can see the songlist I put together for the musicians (guitar and viola) at my wedding. I chose as carefully as possible...check it out.

Dad29 said...

...and try a 12-string picked as accompaniment for Stille Nacht...works, for the obvious reasons!

Charles said...

Brian,
Your pithiness is sometimes only exceeded by your myopia.
As much as I "get your point" you ought to get your "facts" straight, namely a couple.
To whit: the SLJ weren't strummers primarily; in the good old days (Earthen Vessels, period) they were intuitive enough to mix flat pick strumming with arpeggiated finger picking. Secondly, all three Minnasotans are both guitarists and keyboardists. But through the years all three basically concentrated on keyboard as their principal instruments for composition and performance.
As in all things, moderation.
On the converse, last night I attended (sang in choir) for a church dedication in the diocese. The organist (playing a Rodgers 978, I think) played with horrible registrations and consistently in what could be called an "oompah" style, including a horrific accompaniment of the dread Franck "Panis Angelicus." Abuse via poorly performed instruments isn't the sole province of purveyors of the git-fiddle. C'mon, have some charity.