I’m about to embark on a project…
Okay, so I got this off of craigslist for 85 bucks total (50 for the organ, 35 to ship). It’s HUGE and weighs about 400lbs. I live on the second floor of an apartment building with rickety little homecrafted wooden stairs. Needless to say, the poor thing had to spend two days under a tarp in the alley. And wouldn’t ya know it, there was a massive storm that first night!
Luckily, MIRACULOUSLY, it survived getting wet and my pal Carlyle Haire and I hauled the thing off to his beautiful one story house in Lithonia, Ga. Everything works great (although I didn’t hook up the massive twenty-five pedal array, I’m certain that’s in order as well).
As you know, this is one of those ‘Fun Time’ band-in-a-box type consoles and not an organ in the classical sense of the word. In fact, with all of the levers down, it’s damn close to a synthesizer in it’s character. It still has a full set of drawbars, but a B3 it ain’t!
Being that I’m an experimentalist at heart, I’m ga-ga about this machine. It’s organ enough that you’ll know what you’re hearing when it’s played, but synthy enough that I can alter it’s sounds around to make it my main console.
The onboard drumbox is fantastic, super-fakey to the point of being textural at times. The auto chord function is really cool with deep basses and interesting progressions.
The sounds are as follows:
Piano, Harpsichord, Mandolin, Banjo, Marimba, Upper Percussive 4 & 2 2/3, Wow Repeat.
INDEPENDENT SPEAKING VOICES
Tibia 16, String 16, Major Flute 8, Bourdon 16, String Bass, Diapason 8, Tibia 8, Oboe 8, Horn 8, String 8, Clarinet 8, Bassoon 8, String 4, Tibia 4, Tibia 2-2/3, Tibia 2.
Kawai Voice Drawbar
16, 8, 4, 2-2/3, 2.
VOICES: Player Sound 16, Player Sound 8, Tenor Sax, Trumpet, Wow Mute.
DRAWBAR: Attack, Decay, Level, Cut, Peak.
okay, so there’s a mini analog synth in there. The ‘Player Sound’ levers allow the user to modulate on the fly.
The on board drumbox is turned on when you flick the ‘Rhythmer’ tab (yes, ‘Rhythmer’)
The black and white pushbuttons are in two rows of 8.
TOP ROW: Waltz, Ballad, March, Tango, Rock I, Rock II, Rock III, Bossonova
BOTTOM ROW: Swing I, Swing II, Swing III, Samba, Mambo, Beguine, Cha-Cha, Rhumba.
Kawai Electro Chord
Break, Electro Chord, Rhythmer
Yeah, this thing is pretty awesome for what it is.
But this weight issue is an….issue.
So Carlyle and I have been thinking about this: Shedding the heavy, HEAVY wood, separating the amplifier and placing both into their own dedicated plexiglass consoles!! The other idea is have absurdly big handles, casters and built in dolly. I want to use this live, dammit!!