University Christian Church

Fort Worth Texas


First Presbyterian Church

Saginaw Michigan


Nelson Hall

Cheshire, CT


Prince of Peace Lutheran Church

Loveland, OH


Fairlawn Lutheran Church

Fairlawn, OH


St Paul's Lutheran Church

Des Peres MO


Who's on Third

Woodburn, OR


Friendsview

Newberg, OR


First United Methodist Church
Albany, OR 


First Presbyterian Church
New Bern, NC


WORLD PREMIERE
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 MINUTES
Wooster United Methodist Church
Wooster, OH


Nestucca Valley Presbyterian Church

Pacific City, OR


Mary McDonald Concert Series
First Presbyterian Church
Fort Smith, AR


Zion Lutheran Church
Wausau, WI 


St. Paul Lutheran Church
St. Louis, MO

First Presbyterian Church
Kennewick, WA

First Christian Church
Peoria, IL

Music on Market
Wooster United Methodist Church
Wooster, OH 

The First Baptist Church in America
 Providence, RI


Brigham Young University
Provo, Utah

Trinity Lutheran
Lutheran Church
Klein Texas

Prince of Peace
Lutheran Church
Largo Florida

Rodgers Instrument Corporation
Hillsboro, OR

Sundays@3
Church of the Good Samaritan
  and
Oregon Music Teachers Association,
Linn-Benton District
Corvallis, OR      

St. Paul's Lutheran Church
Music at St Paul's Concert Series
Des Peres, MO

United Methodist Church
Music on Market Concert Series
Wooster, OH

St. John's Lutheran Church
2013 Region VIII Convention
of the American Guild of Organists
Salem, OR

First United Methodist Church
A Rodeheaver Series Concert
 Warsaw, IN

Manchester University
 North Manchester, IN
A Fine Arts Series Concert
Fort Wayne, IN

St John Lutheran Church
 Fort Wayne Chapter
American Guild of Organists Event

First United Methodist Church
SW Jersey Chapter of the
American Guild of Organists Event
Mooreston, NJ

 St. Mark's Lutheran Church
Omaha, NE

WORLD PREMIER OF THE GERMAN VERSION OF
BACH AND SONS

Stadpfarrkirche St. Peter und Paul
Inn4tler Sommer Fest Concert
Ried, Austria

St. John's Episcopal Church
An AGO Event
Tulsa, Oklahoma

First Presbyterian Church
An MTNA Concert Event
Newport, Oregon

 Christ Episcopal Church
Christ Church Concert Series
Eureka, California

First United Methodist Church
Fine Arts Series and AGO Event
Camarillo, California

St. Paul's Episcopal Church
Evensong Concert Series
Salem, Oregon

Nestucca Valley Presbyterian Church
Pacific City Arts Association Concert
Pacific City, Oregon

 BACH AND SONS  WORLD PREMIER
Anchorage, Alaska
First Congregational Church
November 21, 2010


A more complete list of performances can be seen on . 

Bach and Sons

From Sea to Shining Sea

UPcoming Pro-motion music events

feature newsletter article      of the month

 

Feature Article - From Sea to Shining Sea

 

What makes From Sea to Shining Sea so different? The concert is performed in a  story format, instantly engaging the audience.

 

I am Jeannine Jordan and I am a Mayflower descendant. What does that mean?  Well, it means my relatives were among the first Europeans who crossed the Atlantic in 1620 on the ship, the Mayflower to make their home in what was to become the United States of America.  My great, great, great, great… (nine greats) grandfather, William Howland, settled in what was to become Plymouth, MA.

 

With that background, I decided to research the lives and times of organists in the colonies and the new United States. What I found are stories and music that you won’t hear anywhere else -- stories and music that are too good to keep buried in a dissertation locked away in a library. 

 

So… let's go back, back over 300 years and start our journey, a journey that will take us From Sea to Shining Sea.  Put on those colonial life jackets, take a Dramamine and come with me to discover the people, the places, the music, and the organs of America.

 

I really cannot imagine how my ancestors and hundreds of others made it across the Atlantic in those rickety ships to this New World.  Harrowing to say the least!!! 

 

Diaries!  Journals!  Hmm… keeping a diary has never been something I’ve been too interested in doing.  Thankfully though, for me, I found there were those in our colonial past who documented every jot and tittle in their lives. Sitting in dusty church attics, historical archives, and museums of cities up and down the East Coast, I started piecing together a picture of the early American organ.  Would you believe, sometimes the most difficult part of my research was getting permission to search through these records? But my!  Did I discover some interesting facts! 

 

 62% of today's audience is visual

Who were these creative, forward-looking people who had brought their Baroque European customs, ideas, and belongings across the ocean in a sailing vessel, over land by oxcart or in a horse-drawn wagon, on a trip of five to six months duration to a city in the wilderness? Cities where mere existence was an exciting and often daily challenge.

 

Come with me to Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and let me introduce to you the local shoemaker, 20-year-old Br. Wilhelm Grabs. He’s taking an organ 400 miles through the densely forested terrain to Wachovia, North Carolina. 

 

 Research for the music and stories provides an accurate and informative background, assuring a quality event.

 

While the Moravians and others were busy creating settlements in the vast outlying territories of 

Colonial America, there were those in the fledgling colonies who had other things on their minds.  Their minds were set on declaring the group of thirteen colonies independent of the rule of England. In bold and rash steps, as we all know, on July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was signed by a group of men
committed to the establishment of the United States of America. By signing this document, it meant the battle lines were then formally drawn and the loosely organized colonies were at war with England.   

 

However, as history tells us, by Christmas Day of 1776, just a few short months after the signing of that all-important document, General George Washington was losing faith that he and his rag-tag army could indeed defeat the British. However, on that very day, he and his troops gained a victory that turned the tide of the war and gave impetus and direction to the citizens of the colonies to continue and complete their quest.

 

What happens next? The fight for independence went well and it’s now 1792 in our young country.  Let’s meet a recent immigrant, James Hewitt – a musician who quickly has embraced the era's uniquely American programmatic musical style.  In Mr. Hewitt’s enthusiasm for his adopted country, he’s composed a piece of musical imagery bringing the crucial Battle of Trenton to life.  Mr. Hewitt has dedicated his descriptive sonata to our American
her
o, General George Washington and his piece is becoming very popular with concert artists and audiences alike.

 

 

After the tumult of the Revolutionary War, the band of thirteen colonies was quickly becoming a unified country and one that was full of opportunity.  Immigrants by the thousands made their way to the shores of the new United States.  Steam-powered ocean liners carrying several hundred people at a time became the common mode of transportation to cross the Atlantic.

 

Consider the year 1751, what was cool? No, really.

 

The pipe the organ has always been and continues to be the most complex of all musical instruments and elicits awe and wonder. Consider the year 1751, a mere fifty years after that first organ in the colonies was played by Jonas the organist for the Mystics of Wissahickon – what was there to amaze and astound the public?  Ah...a pipe organ!  Now there was an instrument to behold.

 

Under the able fingers and feet of one player, a wondrous plethora of sounds and harmonies could be produced on a pipe organ.  Expressly, for this reason, the organ became hugely popular. The organists of that day were amazing entertainers.  Why?  Well, they played music everyone could relate to – fast, lively toccatas that showed off their finger and foot technique, transcriptions of symphonic works, and programmatic pieces which were quite incredible

 

It was reported that a 20-rank pipe organ built by a Mr. Johann Schmahl created such a stir that an immense crowd came a great distance – some traveling ten, twenty, thirty, forty, and even fifty hours’ journey to see and hear this marvel!  Who do you think traveled the 50 hours to hear an organ concert?

 

Life is relatively easy in today’s modern world for an organist.  One goes to the church, flips the power switches and begins a practice session or plays a service or concert. However, in the 1800s, life wasn’t so simple for an organist because…well, without electricity to turn on the blowers which produce the wind for the pipes, the organ was nothing except a pretty grouping of soundless pipes.

 

Ah…but how did those mighty pipe organs make those glorious sounds 150 years ago?  The air was pushed into the pipes using bellows – yes, just like fireplace bellows – only much bigger.  And here’s the catch.  Those bellows didn’t work on their own – they had to be pumped by friends, family, or employees of the organist. That’s right!  An organist could not practice or play a church service or wedding or a funeral or a concert without at least one and sometimes several bellows pumpers.  And from my research, I discovered that those bellows pumpers were paid for each of those services – and yes, even practice times. Can you imagine?  Practice times

 

An organist involved in a duel.  This can't be good. 

 

As I sat in dank church attics sifting through crumbling volumes of church minutes, reading mundane board meeting notes hour after 

hour, occasionally, I would come across something especially surprising, even spectacular. December 4, 1809, a young organist named Charles Gilfert had been hired.  Continuing to page through those centuries-old records, I found Mr. Gilfert’s name two more times. First, was the shocking notation on May 16, 1811, stating that the young Mr. Gilfert had been involved in the fighting of a duel. Come to the concert and see what happened.

 

There was a virtual explosion of American organ builders in the 18th and 19th centuries. 

 

In early 1896, Gerrit Smith, a prominent organist from NY City had an idea:  Was it not perhaps time for organists of America to form their own national organization – one that could educate, promote church music and celebrate the great strides organists in the United States had made in 200 years

 

122 years later, the American Guild of Organists still promotes the organ in all its historic and evolving roles.  It is indeed a privilege to be a part of that organization and to share this historical concert with all of you today.  Many of the founders of the AGO were not only accomplished organ recitalists and church musicians, but also teachers and composers of note during the late 1800s}– just as it is today.

 

The popularity of the organ in America in the mid-1800s was also due to the many instruments of great size and quality being built for concert halls and churches by American organ builders. You’ll see samples of many of the organs from this period including the first photograph of an organ in the USA.

 

By 1883, and we find that the pipe organ has made its way From Sea to Shining Sea with the installation of a pipe organ in Calvary Presbyterian Church of Portland, Oregon. The organ was built by the well-known Massachusetts firm of Hook and Hastings and was shipped around Cape Horn to safely arrive in San Francisco.  It was then loaded onto an ox cart, which was necessary since the railway system to Portland was not yet complete, and this musical masterpiece slowly wound its way home. That organ is now located at what is known as The Old Church in downtown Portland, Oregon.

 

David's stunning visuals will take you to the Battle for Baltimore where Francis Scott Key penned the now famous text to what was to become our National Anthem.

 

By the “dawn’s early light” of September 14, 1814, Francis Scott Key, who was being 'detained' aboard a British ship several miles distant from Baltimore harbor, could just make out an American flag waving above the fort.  British ships were withdrawing from Baltimore, and Key realized that the United States had survived the battle and stopped the enemy advance. Moved by the sight, he wrote a song celebrating “that star-spangled banner” as a symbol of America’s triumph and endurance.  Set to the tune of a popular English song, “The Star-Spangled Banner” quickly became one of the nation’s best-loved patriotic songs and officially became our National Anthem in 1931.

 

If you see that From Sea to Shining Sea is within driving distance, please join us.  We'd love to share the story of the colonies and the new United States via music and visual with you.  

 

From Sea to Shining Sea

 

 

Past performances

From Sea to Shining Sea

Organ and Multimedia Concert

Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist
with
David Jordan,

media artist

Sunday, September 9, 2018
at 7:00 p.m.

St John's Lutheran Church

185 S Center St.
Orange, CA 92866

___________________

Around the World in 80 Minutes

Organ and Multimedia Concert

Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist
with
David Jordan,

media artist

Sunday, January 20, 2019

at 3:00 p.m.

Oregon Center for the Arts

Southern Oregon University

Ashland OR

Sponsored by

Southern Oregon Chapter of

The American Guild of Organists

________________________

 

Bach and Sons

Organ and Multimedia Concert

Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist
with
David Jordan,

media artist

Friday, March 29, 2019

7:30 PM

Gold Canyon 

United Methodist Church

The Gold Canyon Arts Council

6640 S Kings Ranch Rd,

Gold Canyon, AZ 85118

____________________

Around the World in 80 Minutes

Organ and Multimedia Concert

Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist
with
David Jordan,

media artist

at the

Organist Workshop
August 2019
 
Provo Utah
at the
Organist Workshop
August 2019
_______________________

Around the World in 80 Minutes

Organ and Multimedia Concert

Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist
with
David Jordan,

media artist

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Pinnacle Presbyterian Church

25150 North Pima Road
Scottsdale, Arizona
______________________

Around the World in 80 Minutes

Organ and Multimedia Concert

Dr. Jeannine Jordan, organist
with
David Jordan,

media artist

Sunday, January 3, 2021

4:00 PM

 

Evensong Concert Series
St. Paul's Episcopal Church
1444 Liberty St SE
Salem, OR 97302
____________________
 
 
 

Pro-Motion Music