From the Archives: Sounds of St. John Kanty in 1967

By Steve Cichon
steve@buffalostories.com
@stevebuffalo

Buffalo, NY – The Rev. Henry Orszulak grew up in the St. John Kanty parish on Buffalo’s Polish East Side in the 1960’s and was excited to get his hands on three reel-to-reel tapes from the church’s 75th anniversary year in 1967.

The sounds of St. John Kanty celebrating 75 years being digitized. Recorded by a parishioner 47 years ago on reel-to-reel tape, a Mass and Christmas concert are copied for future generations (Buffalo Stories Photo)

Despite being nearly half-a-century old, two of the three St. John Kanty tapes sounded great. The recordings of Mass and the Christmas carols actually sound as good as they did in 1967. The concert, however, didn’t fare as well. Despite trying to play the tape back on several professional and consumer model reel-to-reel machines, significant bleedthrough and ghosting have permanently ruined the tape. It makes audio that remains difficult to listen to– although I did post a portion of it here anyway. It’s still beautiful to listen to if you can fight through the backwards organ music and singing over significant parts of it.

These descriptions  were taped inside of the boxes. 

 

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Steve Cichon

Steve Cichon is a proud Buffalonian helping the world experience the city he loves. writing about the people, places, and ideas that make Buffalo unique and special. The storyteller and historian has written six books, worn bow ties since the 80s, and spent 20 years working in Buffalo radio and TV, climbing his way to news director at WBEN Radio. Since then, he's been an adjunct professor, produced PBS documentaries, and even run for Erie County Clerk. Steve's Buffalo roots run deep: all eight of his great-grandparents called Buffalo home, with his first ancestors arriving here in 1827.