Recordings: Overview

This webpage provides a quick overview of recordings in TortoiseClimbing's current and planned pipeline, in alphabetical order.

Annaplois High School Choirs, The Crucifixion

When David was in high school, in 1959 the choral music director, Robert F. Kunkle, produced a performance of John Stanier's The Crucifixion. Participating were Mr. Kunkle's mixed chorus, two women's choruses, and soloists from the choirs from the graduating classes of 1959, 1960 and 1961.

Because no one involved in recording the performances knew anything about making a record, and because mastering was virtually unknown when that record was produced, the resulting record had very uncomfortable volume changes throughout, where the best-of performances were spliced together. TortoiseClimbing™ plans to rectify that over 60 years old shortcoming by producing the much needed, first ever, Digitaly Mastered version of those performances from the LP recording of the choirs' performances.

TortoiseClimbing™ plans to make available for free download, digital audio files of that mastered version from this website. Those interested in obtaining a copy are expected to be a small set of persons, likely mostly from:

You can:

Please provide your input by accessing the comment page by clicking on the button at the bottom of the AHS download page labled "Click to provide comment".

Hymns & Songs for Living

Although Hymns and Songs for Living is the third album TortoiseClimbing™ has been involved with, it is the first planned for public release, rather than for private release.

The first TortoiseClimbing™ album was produced for private release in 1991. The re-release will be titled Nostolgic Solos. It was produced for family and friends. Following that TortoiseClimbing was in the process of producing an album now titled Romantic Duets. Work on that was put on hold to produce Hymns and Songs for Living.

The album Hymns and Songs for Living is accompanied by the companion publication, History Through 26 Hymns and Songs. (See Publications for details.) Following public release of this album and its companion ebook, it is planned to create an audio book version of the ebook. (Plans also include returning to complete and publically release at least the first solos album, and possibly writing a simple companion publication.)

The Hymns and Songs album came about after David's father died in late 1996. In Spring of 1998, some months before his mother also would die, she requested TortoiseClimbing™ record a represenative list of their favorite hymns and several religious songs. They jointly selected for inclusion:

  1. The hymns from hymnals his parents had collected over their lives as their respective churches replaced them with newer hymnals, plus
  2. Several non-hymn religious songs that were important to them. One is the contempory christian song written for the funeral of his mother's sister by the granddaughter of mother's sister; and 2 others are service songs from the backs of the hymnals.

A number of musicians were involved, both instrumental and vocal, bringing their wealth of training, experience and skills to this project. Individual webpages provide credits for each participant. 

Work on Hymns and Songs for Living was carried out over a number of years, divided into 2 widely separated Phases.

Phase I

Phase I of the recording began immediately after his mother's request in Spring 1998. Ms. Gerber-Salins became producer, vocal arranger for harmony on several hymns, audio engineer, and a significant duet partner on many numbers. The vocals on this album are a mix of solo, duet, and multi-part harmonies. Ms. Gerber-Salins' voice is part of many of the numbers. Plus, she sings the lead on her arrangement of "Were You There."

After his mother's death, work slowed. Then in about 2004, because of preemptions in the lives of both David and Ms. Gerber-Salins, TortoiseClimbing™ put this project on hold for a number of years.

Phase II

Phase II resumed in January 2019, when David again became available. That allowed TortoiseClimbing™ to undertake completion of this project. Ms. Gerber-Salins had moved on to other endevors in her life. However, the notes and knowledge learned from working with her during the pause between Phase I and II enabled David to take on the Producer's rule. For Associate Producer and recording engineer, TortoiseClimbing™ was able to return to working with Mr. Bill McElroy at his new enterprise, SlippedDisc™.

Based on notes developed with Ms. Gerber-Salins during the pause between Phase I and II, various augmentations were added to the overall project, including:

In addition TortoiseClimbing™ took on:

All recording on Hymns and Songs for Living are public domain, except:

However, Ms. Kathy Brigman Haupt, the author and composer of the contemporary christian song "Welcome Home", has given permission to TortoiseClimbing™ to arrange and record the first public release of her song as part of Hymns and Songs for Living.

Kathy's Songs

The composer of "Welcome Home" previously wrote several other contemporary christian songs. TortoiseClimbing has proposed creating arrangements for each and recording a small album containing Kathy's other songs. Ms. Haupt is currently reluctant to have that done.

Nostolgic Solos

This was the first simple, solo album TortoiseClimbing™ initially produced for private release in 1991 for David's friends and family. It is ballads from the 1930's through WWII and a few decades afterward about values that make life worth living. It includes songs about: love; loss; sorrow; bereavement, dedication; and needed social change. Acompaniment for most of the songs is solo piano, while several use prerecored Karaoke tracks as the accompaniment.

Plans are to revisit the Nostolgic Solos project to remix and remaster to create a version for public release. That will be after completion of:

Nostalgic Solos will include:

There definitely will be the issue of dealing with copyright royalty requirements.

Romantic Duets

In 1993 when Mr. McElroy left Bias, Ms. Gerber-Salins became the lead audio engineer and co-producer for TortoiseClimbing™. Having recently completed the Nostalgic Solos, work began on what was conceptualized to be a duet album of then popular romantic songs, primarily from the 1970's through the early 1990's. All accompaniments are prerecored Karaoke tracks. (This album is also largely in the style of ballads.)

Over the next 4 years TortoiseClimbing™ gradually recorded materials for that project. During that time, Ms. Gerber-Salins' professional relationship expanded and evolved to include Ms. Gerber-Salins fulfilling roles of co-producer, occasional singing collaborator and very importantly, friend, working on the draft Romantic Duets album. (As noted above, work on that album was put on hold in 1998 to focus on the Hymns and Songs for Living.)

Production was ongoing on this private album at the time David's mother proposed TortoiseClimbing™ record Hymns and Songs for Living. All work on this project was put on hold.

The recorded master materials for the Romantic Duets album are converted from analogue to digital. However, that work remains a draft recordings. Thus, no decision has been made about release of those draft recordings.

They definitely would have to deal with copyright royalty requirements.

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