Capel y Graig, Wales

The Capel y Graig is a small chapel located village of Furnace in Ceredigion, Wales.  In Welsh Graig means rock or stone.  It was built in 1868 and was in use until 2001.  The Chapel also has a back stables with living quarters to host itinerant preachers on the preaching routes round Wales.

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Avi in the Capel

 

From 2003 until 2011 the chapel was lovingly restored and renovated by Avi Allen and her father Christopher Allen and is now used as a very special arts space.

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Afon Einion

 

 

 

 

 

This improvisation was convinced of in the chapel after a long walk in the surrounding valleys and hills and then performed that evening.  It is named after the river that runs by the chapel, Einion.

 

 

Jim found the old chapel organ and adapted an old Irish gypsy folk song that he learned off a friend of the family.  The organ was in a bit of disrepair with one of the foot bellows and a fair few of the keys out of use.

 

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Douglas MacGregor – Part One of Three – Gesellschaftshaus, at the Riviera Grünau

The Riviera Grünau consists of two once impressive buildings; the Ballhaus and the Gesellschaftshaus, which translates literally as ‘society house’.  Like the Ballhaus, the Gesellschaftshaus is falling to pieces and there are now few signs of it’s former gory apart from this rapidly decaying hall.  Throughout the building the floors are virtually non-existent, the decor is long gone and graffiti, including a worrying abundance of nazi graffiti, pervades the entirety.  The ceiling in the hall, once red, now looks close collapse.1910 As this postcard from 1910 shows, guests could sail down the Spree and arrive by boat.  While the Ballhaus can boast of a cultural significance during the 1920s as a concert venue, the Gesellschaftshaus seems more like a reminder of the opulence in days gone by.

As you will see in the video, in the hall itself there are now two large wall paintings on either side which add yet another layer to this space; an abandoned reminder of a bygone era still visited by both artists and neo-nazis alike and still an excellent space for a performance.

The piece played here is the first part of a group of three pieces.  The name of the piece reflects this.  It also reflects the fact that the themes of the piece are quite diverse and abstract.

For some nice photo’s of the buildings go here

For more music go here or here

Agustin Barrios – Vals No. 3 – recorded at Riviera Grünau, Berlin – Douglas MacGregor

The Ballhaus Riviera was built in 1895 and by the 1920’s was a hotspot during the cultural boom of the Weimar Republic.  For musicians of the time, this was one of ‘the places to play’.  After The Second World War the Ballhaus remained open, although it’s heyday had definitely past.  After the reunification of Germany the building fell into disuse and decay .
Augustin Barrios was a Paraguayan composer who lived from 1885 to 1944.  He is one of the finest guitar composers.Ballhaus Riviera

For more information on the Ballhaus Riviera these two blogs are great and contain many a nice picture: The Ost World (auf Deutsch) and Digital Cosmonaut

https://www.facebook.com/eufieldrecording
www.douglasmacgregormusic.com

The Dictator’s Waltz – Douglas MacGregor – Krampnitz

The Dictator’s Waltz – a concept waltz by Douglas MacGregor

This recording was made at the abandoned Krampnitz military base near Potsdam in Germany.  Krampnitz is a huge abandoned military complex.  It was originally used by the Nazis to train cavalry officers and after the war was taken over and used as a military base by the Soviets.  The camp was abandoned in 1992 after the collapse of the USSR
This recording was made in what appears to be the ballroom of the officers ‘club’.  The room is in remarkably good condition and sounds amazing.
The Dictator’s Waltz is a piece of music directed at dictators and other such people, hence the ballroom of a Nazi military camp seemed like the perfect location for a field recording.   You can even see two crumbling stone eagles in the background.

For more info/photos about/of Krampnitz and other interesting places around Berlin here is a great wee blog: Abandoned Berlin

For more info/music about/by me go here: www.soundcloud.com/dougmacgregor or www.douglasmacgregormusic.com

Anew Named One – Douglas MacGregor – Krampnitz


Krampnitz is an abandoned military base near Potsdam, Germany.  It was originally built by the Nazi’s and used as a training camp for cavalry officers.  The Soviets took over the base after the second World War and used it as a military base throughout the Cold War until it was abandoned after the collapse of the USSR.
In the middle of this camp is an old theatre where this recording was made.  It was a bit of a surprise to find a theatre in the middle of a military camp and you can only imagine what used to go on here, who came and what sort of performances they had.

www.soundcloud.com/dougmacgregor

www.douglasmacgregormusic.com

The Ostensible Walz – Douglas MacGregor – Recorded at Krampnitz

Krampnitz is an abandoned military base near Potsdam, Germany.  It was originally built by the Nazi’s and used as a training camp for cavalry officers.  The Soviets took over the base after the second World War and used it as a military base throughout the Cold War until it was abandoned after the collapse of the USSR.  Click here or here to find some nice blogs where people have written a bit more about Krampnitz and taken some nice pictures.

This recording was made in what appears to be the ballroom of the officers ‘club’.  The room is in remarkably good condition and sounds amazing.
The Ostensible Waltz is a piece of music that is unhappy with the way things seem at first and tries to delve beneath the ‘ostensible’ layers to find out what really lies under the surface.  It inevitably fails and finds itself back where it began, but with the knowledge of where it has been.
From a technical point of view, the left hand fingering in this piece is about as challenging as it gets.

www.soundcloud.com/dougmacgregormusic

www.douglasmacgregormusic.com