"Puer Natus Est" if the first of "Four Improvisations on Gregorian Themes" by Everett Titcomb.
Titcomb (1884-1968) spent his entire career in the greater Boston Massachusetts area. He was born in Amesbury, and studied organ and composition with Samuel Whitney, organist and choirmaster of The Church of The Advent, Boston. Titcomb’s compositional inclinations lean strongly toward the music of High Church ritualism (Anglo-Catholic), and beginning in 1910 he was able to give full vent to them. That year he was appointed to The Church of St. John the Evangelist, Beacon Hill, the
and The New England Conservatory of Music. He served St. John’s until he died in 1968. Titcomb's organ music consists mostly of small works, with a few larger ones thrown in.
This work is the first of four, highly romantic "improvisations" and uses the Gregorian melody as the basis of the work, which starts and ends in a hush before reaching a tremendous climax, incorporating "Adeste fidelis" with "Puer natus" over a long pedal point.
It is dedicated to Frederick Johnson, Esq., and was published by the B.F.Wood Company, Boston in 1938.
This performace is actually a "first try" and I just sort of "did it as I went". Sort of a test run. I had intended to do this on Salisbury, since I think that would be a better organ for this piece, as Hereford isn't quite "smooth" enough.
That being said, my ear can't handle the full organ at the moment, so, I hope you can accept this on the "wrong" organ and "as it is".
I offer this in thanks and appreciation for my many friends here, and wish everyone the best of holidays and success and peace in the new year.
I ask that you keep me in your prayers, as things have gotten quite a bit worse over the last few days. It appears as though I'm now losing my good ear as well...
Anyway, I hope that you find this piece to be moving. It's a real beauty!