Todd's clutch of
Hammonds, Hammond projects, Hammond information, fun Hammond stuff,
and links to all things Hammond on the Internet
The Hammond organ. That inimitable
purr, growl, roar, and scream. That sublime pad behind an acoustic
guitar. That full-afterburner smear up the keyboard with all the
drawbars pulled out and the Leslies spooling up. That funky, soulful
percussive bark that just oozes with chicken grease and brings
to mind a trio of hot cats cookin' in a small jazz club. The plaintive
wail of gospel playing that gets you on your knees.
Synthesizers temporarily supplanted
the Hammond in the late 70's through the 80's. It was a dark period
for music, with the warmth of true human beings playing true honest
songs on real musical instruments giving way to a soulless mechanical
repetitious wasteland. This wasteland lives on as techno, rap,
and teen pop. But somewhere in the 90's, many artists came back
to the Hammond, realizing that this was the sound they wanted
all along while being seduced by slick solid-state contraptions.
Now not only has the Hammond regained sway with roots-music artists
like Bruce Cockburn and Bob Dylan, but even makes its way into
mainstream pop music. The Hammond in Jazz has experienced a resurgence
as legends like the godfather of jazz organ Jimmy Smith record
new albums and up-and-coming giants like young phenom Joey DeFrancesco
and Tony Monaco push the envelope of B-3 jazz.
To the Left:
My 1963 B-3, with my silly dog Obie, an American Pit Bull Terrier, on the bench.
The organ barks and bites. The dog grins, wiggles, and passes gas. ;->
To the right is my
1952 Hammond B-2, with my Leslie 45 to the left of it. This is
the rig that I use live. The B-2 here has the later smooth drawbars
and newer manuals courtesy of a donor '54 C-2. Most -2 consoles
have the early "ratchet" type drawbars. The only feature
the -2 series lacks is percusssion, and this can be easily added.
To the bottom is a pic
of yours truly playing the old B-2 at an outdoor concert with Linear
Action Band (LAB), a group featuring the songwriting and guitar talent
of Ed Englerth.
Click the picture to hear a mp3 snippet of this rig
Coming soon - more pics, schematics,
a pictorial guide of the innards of Hammonds, and more....stay
Wait A Minnit! - Fellow hamtech list
member Steve Leigh suggested that I throw together an R&B jam tune with no changes, just one chord through the
whole thing a la Sly and The Family Stone. So I programmed a set of loops in the DR-770 drum machine, then laid the bass down, then plugged my
Taylor 314ce acoustic/electric guitar in direct, EQ-ing the bananas out of it to try and make the tone resemble a Telecaster. It ended up sounding like an acoustic-electric with the bananas EQ-ed out of it. :-) I don't have an electric of any kind, so that
had to suffice. It worked. Then I miked up the Leslie, unplugged the slow motors, and cut the B-3 part. I think it
worked. I only used 6 tracks on my ADAT, too. Never did make up my mind what else I wanted to add to it. Now if I can just figure out how to
put the bananas back into the guitar....
Haunted - This is an original
Ed Englerth tune that
I played with Ed Englerth's Linear Action Band, a Christian blues/funk/folk/rock/etcetra band based in Hastings, MI.
The photo of yours truly at the B-2 up in the pics section was taken at that gig. I thought I'd share one of my favorite
tunes from that one. Haunted is a funky little ode to irresistable grace. :-) We're currently working on getting
LAB back up and running again.
Curious - Another cut from that gig. This is a shorter file,
about 2.5MB. This is another good tune. Another classic "Ed" tune.
L.O.V.E. - A third song from that gig. OK, I confess. I'm responsible
for the lead vocal on this one. ;)
Trek II - Manufacturer of accessories and bolt-ons for vintage Hammonds and Leslies. They make a popular percussion add-on for older consoles as well as a
fine solid-state preamp that directly replaces a B-3/C-3/A-100/RT-3/D-100 preamp, and can be used to add percussion and restore original audio performance
to older Hammond consoles.
ProKeys - HamTech list member Steve Leigh's home on the Web. He is known for being fussy to a fault about
Hammonds and the refurbishing thereof, but the results speak for themselves. The organs sound unbelieveable. Steve has a cute fox, too.