Thursday, September 27, 2007

Obituary in the Boston Globe

The Boston Globe on Wednesday published this abbreviated version of the New York Times obituary.

(update) Hannah Walsh, Gregory Smith's granddaughter

Anyone who knew Albert knew the late Gregory Smith (a.k.a. Grisha) through Albert' frequent and affectionate Grisha stories. In addition to being a great friend, Gregory was instrumental in launching Helicon and remains, with Alice Tully, a Helicon Muse (it's on the letterhead).

Here are some pictures and correspondence from the Smith family:

Hannah Walsh (fka Hannah Smith) writes: Gregory was a very dear friend of Albert's and I have no doubt they are now reunited in heaven. This has been the one happy thought that has gotten me through today after I stumbled this morning across Albert's obituary in yesterday's Boston Globe.

I have missed Albert deeply since leaving NYC in the summer of 2005. He has been a part of my life since I can remember, as a sort of second grandfather at first, and then a friend and storyteller who could keep my grandfather's memory alive in my mind and heart. I could go on and on about what Albert's stories of my family have provided for me.

I've attached a picture of Albert, me and my firstborn son (Jedidiah). I think this picture was taken in the spring of 2004 in front of Nick & Toni's (where else?).

Mardie Smith (Gregory's daughter-in-law) writes: Hannah was very close to her grandfather and developed a very close relationship with Albert after Gregory’s death. In this photo, she is pregnant with Gregory’s second great-grandson, Owen. It was taken two years ago in front of Shun Lee by Albert’s apartment. Jedidiah is now four years old.

Grisha was a certainly a fascinating father-in-law. Our visits with him usually coincided with visits from Albert, Zoltan, Bobby White, C. Ray Smith and a few others. Dana and I have been together for 35 years so I entered the scene at the summer home in Stonington, Ct and went on to those in Maine and East Hampton. You can imagine the settings, the dinners, the stories, and the laughter! But Albert was his best friend; Gregory once told me that he and Albert spoke on the phone every day, no matter where they happened to be in the world.

"Bist du bei mir"

WQXR 96.3 FM in New York City will play Albert's version of "Bis du bei mir" from his "Bach for Harpsichord" CD today at 12:40 p.m. They will program additional performances by Albert Friday in the late afternoon. (Thank you Hester Furman.)

This is from Albert's program notes:

"The group closes with another prayer, one for companionship at the end. This prayer, Bist du bei mir, was sung by Hughues Cuenod countless times in concerts that he and I gave together. In remembrance of those magical times when I accompanied him, varying my figured-bass realization as we improvised together, I have made a transcription of this vocal work for harpsichord alone. In it are gathered the feelings of melodic and accompanimental spontaneity that Hughie and I enjoyed, along with some of the tender feelings that guided us along our way." --- Albert Fuller

Recorded: 20-22 April 1992, The Presbyterian Church, Rye, NY
Harpsichord: Thomas & Barbara Wolf