Welcome to ORGAN*PRON!

 

NOTE:  This post is a ‘Sticky’, a post that starts the top of each page.  New content continues below!

Hello everybody and welcome to Organ*Pron, a blog dedicated to that most enigmatic of instruments, the electric organ! My name’s Mars and while I’m certainly no keyboard wizard, I do love the artistry and innovation that has gone into the myriad of electronic organs. What I’m attempting to do with this blog is to make a sort of photographic database of the many organs out there. My main inspiration is undoubtedly the unparalleled juggernaut that is Matrixsynth the last word in synthesizer pron on web.

I’ve been cruising both ebay and craigslist looking at the various organs and noticed that, beyond the fact that they’re either blood curdlingly expensive or dirt cheap, there is very little in the way of a comprehensive database to reference these things. I’d like to try and change that. Unfortunately, I know VERY LITTLE in this regard, so I’m hoping that you organ enthusiasts can help both identify the pics of any unknown organs I post and add pictures and reviews of your own!

I do want to make clear that I want to keep the blog fun and loose for now, so don’t expect academia when visiting. The name of the blog is ORGAN*PRON, after all.

Okay, while I want to keep a main focus on organs here, I’m not opposed to string machines, Mellotrons and their family (Birotrons, Nanotrons, Optigans, etc.), artistically interesting Harmoniums, mystery stuff, videos, add ons, VSTi’s, home modifications (can you even do this?), etc.. No straight up synthesizers though, as Matrixsynth has that well covered!

Okay, so a few rules. First, I don’t own the vast majority of what’s going up and what I do have ain’t for sale so don’t ask. If I do decide to sell, I’ll notify you all by posting my EBAY or CRAIGSLIST link. Secondly, please don’t try and sell your stuff in the comments unless you have an active ebay or craigslist post for the item. NO DIRECT SELLING OF STUFF IN THE COMMENTS SECTION – IF YOU TRY I’LL DELETE THE COMMENT AND BAN YOU.

Forget it.  Comments closed unless otherwise noted.

Update October 2010:  I plan on doing more updates now that I don’t have to worry about thieves, jerks and fraud victims clogging up the comments section.  Stay tuned!

Moog Cordovox CDX Organ 1975

The Moog Satellite was designed to be an organ player’s synth. It was manufactured by the Thomas Organ Company, who paid a large royalty to be allowed to manufacture the Satellite for Moog. In return they were allowed to incorporate the Satellite into their organs. Thomas Organ Company also, along with Cordovox, designed the Moog CDX.

The Moog CDX is basically a Cordovox organ with a built in Satellite monosynth. It is the only organ product that bears the Moog name prominently across the front. Somewhat rare in the US, they seem to be in plentiful supply in parts of Europe.
CDX-0652

A dual-manual combo organ with a Moog Satellite grafted onto it. I understand that the Satellite had a very thin sound, nothing like the MiniMoog. It had only a single oscillator and several preset sounds, similar to other semi-preset synths like the Arp Pro Soloist and the Roland SH-2000.

Thomas bought the rights to the Satellite from Moog. The CDX-0652 was designed by Thomas in cooperation with Cordovox. A Thomas version of the Satellite (the “Synthi 1055) and the CDX-0652 were both manufactured by EME, the same outfit that made most Italian Vox organs. Thomas also marketed the Satellite under the “Orbit” name on some of their home organs.

The synthesizer voices play only on the upper manual, organ voices play on both. Organ and synth voices may be played simultaneously on the upper manual. It includes a batch of 9 preset synthesizer voices that don’t appear on a Satellite. Unlike the 0642, this one seems to have all of the organ features (many of which seem identical to the 0642) available on both keyboards.

Controls:

Top Panel:

* Tab: Moog On/Off
* Buttons: Piano, Sax, Guitar, Flute, Banjo, Clarinet, String, Trumpet, Horn, Preset
* *Tabs 1: Octaves: 1 & 2 Modulation: Rep, Sine/Square, Vib, Trem
* *Tabs 2: Glide, Sust
* *Tabs 3: Brass: Mute, Open Reed: Thin, Hollow, Full, Bright
* *Tabs 4: String: Bow, Pluck Strike, Pick Bell, Lunar

Left of Upper Keyboard:

* Knob: Tuning
* Black Sliders: Flute Voices: 16′, 8′, 5-1’3, 4′, 2-2’3, 2′ Mixture, Volume Lower, Volume Upper
* *White Sliders: Filter: Contour, Color, Emphasis Modulation: Rate, Depth Glide, Volume

Left of Lower Keyboard:

* Buttons: Coupler, Sustain, Bass
* Sliders: Bass Min/Max, Guitar Bass, Vibrato Depth

Right of Lower Keyboard:

* Buttons: Percuss, Repeat, Mono
* Sliders: 8′, 4′, 2-2/3′, 2′, Decay Short/Long, Repeat Rate Slow/Fast””

Via THIS AUCTION

89 Keyless Gavioli Replica Band Organ

Built by Master Craftsman Ken Smith.

“This 89 Keyless Gavioli replica band organ, built by Ken Smith, is based on those organs built in the Black Forest of Germany by the Gavioli company. The keyscale is the 89 key G4 scale and playes folding cardboard music.  The quality of construction and materials, is of the highest level. Research was done by careful examination of antique instruments and making drawings from these. Ken was a highly skilled machinist, and the organ reflects his abilities.

In addition to all of the hand made organ pipes, valve chests, and other components, the organ has an elaborate hand carved facade with two figures and a conductor. The organ, as shown in the first photo, is 13 feet wide, 7-1/2 feet tall, and has a depth of 4 feet. There are 402 pipes and over 2,500 meters of music including many classical and popular tunes. Organ is in top playing condition.

This organ has appeared at many MBSI, AMICA, COAA and ABOA organ rallies for more than 20 years.

Organ is located in the Columbus, Ohio area. Buyer must provide all shipping arangements.”

Via THIS AUCTION

For A Piddling $80,000.00!


Step Into Concrète: Organ Sample Sets (and VSTi)

Hello everyone (that I didn’t scare away with my last post).

Today I thought I’d do something a little different and turn you on to some organ sample sets, free as well as commercial.  For the few of you that have no clue what I’m speaking of -A history lesson:

‘Samples’ are snippets of recorded sound used in musical composition.  It technically started in the 1940’s with Pierre Schaeffer and ‘Musique Concrète’.

1948!

In the 1960’s Musique Concrète went pop with the birth of the Mellotron, a keyboard that played 8 second lengths of audio tape playing a signle note of an instrument (like a cello, or violin) per key.  Certainly, you’ve heard it.

The strings?  Mellotron.

Then came the 80’s and with it came digital sampling.  The biggest name in the form was the Fairlight CMI.

Peter Gabriel explains the Fairlight!  Yes, in English

Art of Noise with their ground breaking Fairlight track (and amusing vid) for “Close To The Edit”

As the decade wore on, the technology became MUCH cheaper and the data storage much smaller resulting in many different choices in the sampling realm.  From the heavy duty:

The EMU Emulator II

To the down and dirty:

The Ensoniq Mirage (RACK VERSION)

Pete Rock wailing on the now legendary EMU SP1200 (among other things)

To the thing you wish you never bought your grandkid for Christmas:

What they sold you

What you bought!

Replace “Hello My Name Is Herbert” with a fart, or “Billy Is Gay” and the tears, they did flow huh, Gramma?  Yep.

Well, with the 90’s came the advent of computer recording and now, in the late Aughties, anyone with a half decent computer or smart phone (iPhone / iPad) has the ability to also run a top of the line sampler / sequencer through any number of DAW programs like Cubase, Nuendo, Reaper, Fruity Loops, Ableton, Pro-Tool, Garageband, the list is LONG.

DAW VIDEOS ARE TOO BORING TO SHOW!

go ahead, hit the link, see if I care!

So, why oh, why did I drag through this?

Because some of you love organs, but don’t have the space necessary or means to have one in your home.  Well, if you have a computer, enough space on your hard drive, and money to afford a USB MIDI keyboard controller, I think sampling is the solution for you!  Once you understand the basics of sampling (terms like MIDI and WAV) and spend a little time with a simple program like Garageband (which comes loaded in most iMacs as far as I know) or Cubase lite, the internet will provide you with more sampled organ sounds than you could believe, often cheap, sometimes free!

Here’s a few places to get some organ samples!:

http://sonimusicae.free.fr/orguedesalon-en.html awesome pipe organ

http://www.forgottenkeys.co.uk/3_fe70.php A Yamaha FE-70 – exactly the kind of organ we love @ Organ *Pron!  I’ve bought from Forgotten Keys numerous times, great stuff and SUPER CHEAP!  I didn’t know about this until TODAY!!  Plenty of classic Drumbox sample sets there, too!

http://www.sampletekk.com/proddetail.php?prod=PMIDELIVER-007-FORMAT A nice Kontakt style baroque organ

http://www.vintagekeyboardsounds.com/ A bunch of hot combo organs here!

http://audiogeneticslab.com/instruments/free/magnus-chord-organ A free Magnus chord organ set.  Actually really cool!

http://www.hollowsun.com/shop/Freepacks Hollow Sun, the masters of the weird sample set, offer up a free Novachord, one of the coolest organ type instruments EVER!

http://www.freesound.org/ Speaking of weird and Musique Concrète…

Here are some VSTi (Virtual Studio Technology instrument), basically simulated digital versions of real instruments – no samples.  Some are servicable, some are amazing, as far as organs go, there are TONS and the majority of them are FREE.  So, please, mosey on over to KVR Audio check ‘em out!

http://www.kvraudio.com/get.php?mode=results&st=f&q=organ

No More Comments.

If you’ve noticed, I rarely update this page.  Part of the reason is the non-stop deluge of comments from people making demands, trying to buy things that I’ve made pretty clear aren’t mine, and people trying to sell organs – which I can safely say are 99% scams.  Well, congratulations dumbasses – no more comments.  I am DONE with your laziness in finding out about things like:

A) Where you are.

B) What the purpose of the place you are is.

C) What a blog is.

Half of you people seem to think I’m running a store, even though it says RIGHT UNDER THE TITLE

“No. I don’t own them. Stop asking!”

And you run your mouth at me making demands like “I need this manual.  I will pay five dollars.  I need you to get it here by Friday.” without even checking to see if I have the manual in question or if you’re actually in a store!

And then there are you sad, sad old folks who are all to willing to give up your personal info, credit card numbers and all to a total stranger you’ve never even seen in hopes of getting the organ pictured.

Enough.  I warned you months ago, but nothing has changed.  You’ve just about killed what joy I had in doing this blog.  When I get an email saying that a new comment awaits my moderation, I literally GROAN.  I really wanted to just have a blog where people came and drooled over crazy organs, maybe talked about their experiences and shared videos etc.  There have been a few of you that did just that.  To you I say thank you and also I’m sorry.  You were who I had in mind when I started this, unfortunately there are many more Archie Bunkers out there, ruining it for the rest of us.

Calling All Manuals!

Next to goofballs trying to sell their organs – which I expressly forbid without craigslist / ebay representation – the next question I’m asked is for manuals.  This is tough as there aren’t many available online as most of these instruments predate the internet as we know it by 20 years or so.

So this is my request: send me your manuals in PDF form and I will store them here!  If this amount gets big enough (unlikely) I will move them to their own dedicated site!

The organ community NEEDS this service more and more each day, so if you can – Please Do!  I will make sure to credit you, unless you don’t want me to.

If this sounds good to you, send me your manuals – user or service – to:

mars hottentot (at) hotmail dot com (remove the spaces and turn ‘at’ into ‘@’ and ‘dot’ into ‘.’)

Thank you in advance and hopefully we see a few manuals in the near future!

Yamaha MR1 PLAYER ORGAN!!

From Craigslist in Katy, near Houston, Texas

Yamaha MR1 PLAYER ORGAN!!

“[V]ery nice Yamaha MR1 player organ. Everything works. missing one small knob. and we no longer have any of the player cards. But, you can play it yourself…..doesnt need the player cards for that! This is a great instrument that I dont want to store any longer! Comes with bench. Has smoke colored plexi glass hinged top.”

Asking price is $125.00 US.  I bet you could haggle it down!

Here’s the manual (right click the image choose ‘Save Link As’) to help you decide.

KUSTOM KOMBO J-1295 TUCK AND ROLL ORGAN

Easily one of the coolest organs ever.  Auction HERE.  Ends on 2/25/10.

“Here’s a rare piece: a 1968 Kustom J-1295 Kombo organ. This piece is a real monster, “tuck-and-fold” silver ( white ) Naugahyde from the “Zodiac” series, four C12N Jensen special design speakers, K200A amp , K200 preamp for other instruments , and a lot more.This organ will need some work primarily on the preamp which I can’t seem to get a signal through,some humming, Naugahyde ripped on the bottom, and the volume pedal pot will need some cleaning. All of the tabs and controls function well and the amp is loud. Organ comes with its original cover. I believe this is a first year Kustom Kombo organ and a pretty funky unit at that. This baby weights about 200 lbs so it’ll have to be picked up or freighted, so please read my item description.”