Edward F Johnston’s Forest Vesper (Nocturne)
Edward F Johnston (photo above from 1919, 5 years after this music was published) was not a relative of mine. Let’s get that one out of the way. I have, though, been drawn to the few organ composers with my last name. And why not?
The second recorded performance of his “Forest Vesper” comes to us from the lyrical genius of Steve Schlesing. Steve’s style is known to many of us on my list of organ music restoration devotees; he is a master of pulling every last drop of emotion from romantic and sentimental scores. This one was envisioned and first played on a Wurlitzer in 1912! It’s one of my favorites, and I am so grateful to Steve for his efforts in doing this for us to hear. Enjoy!
I’ve recorded the Forest Vesper on the Reuter sample set … it almost plays itself on this organ. The Vox Humana really gets to shine in the “Prayer” section. Being in G Minor, it sounds like “fall” to me.