James Hook (1746-1827) is chiefly remembered for "The Sweet Lass of Richmond Hill," one of some 200 songs that he wrote.
He was organist of Marylebone Gardens from 1769 until 1773 and of Vauxhall Gardens from 1774 until 1820. It was during this time that he composed an oratorio, "The Ascension", organ concertos, piano sonatas and his well-known piano method, "Guida di musica". Much of his music is of a light and happy nature, thus reflecting his duties at Vauxhall Gardens where he had to play an organ concerto each night during the season.
The "Voluntary in D Minor / D major comes from "10 Voluntaries composed in a familiar style", (0p. 146), and dates from around 1808.
Five of these voluntaries were published by Paxton Music Limited in 1984.
The Voluntary in D Minor / D Major is a nice one. It starts out with a "serious" prelude, played upon the Great Diapasons, before turning to a bright, "Handelian" section, played upon the "Full organ," of the period, or course! ;-)
This is the kind of "sticky" piece that just BEGS you to play a wrong note, and I think I obliged it a few times.
The "level" of these voluntaries are really not up to Stanley, etc., at least from my way of thinking. Perhaps it is the "absence of churchiness" that gives this effect.
Still, they are nice and attractive pieces, and this one is especially appealing.
A photo of a painting of James Hook is attached below.