Organists, famous in their own countries, and Internationally
(This section is by Bill Reid)
Updated November 2013.
01. George Blackmore
Chatham, Kent, England. Died Feb 24th 1994
Theatre & Electric Organs.
Resident organist: Capitol & Astoria Cinemas, Aberdeen, Scotland. 1950-1957.
Hammond Organ demonstrator U.K.
Representative for Conn, U.S.A.
Film music. Whistle Down The Wind & Charade.
Signature Tune: Cock O' The North. Composition 'The Highlander'.
Fellow of the Royal College of Organists.
Lost lower part of both legs and was fitted with artificial ones and returned to play the organ
02. Bobby Pagan
Residential organist: Palladium, Copenhagan, Capitol & Astoria cinemas, Aberdeen
03. Earnest Broadbent
Oldham, England Born 1910. Died 19th January 1994.
Theatre Pipe organs. Gaumont British cinema chain.
BBC and Blackpool Tower.
Resident organist at Regent Wurlitzer, Brighton.
Accompanist to Joseph Locke 1948-52.
Hammond organist at the Tower Lounge, Blackpool.
Resident organist at the Blackpool Tower Wurlitzer 1970-77
Signature Tune, For You.
Lost lower part of both legs but never returned to playing the organ
04. H. Robinson Cleaver
British Theater Organsist with many apperarances on Radio and recordings.
05. Charles Smart
Concert & Theatre pipe organs.
BBC Theatre Organ and recording artist.
06. Harold Smart
Son Of Charles Smart. Played Hammond in strict modern dance tempo and virtually with the same settings throughout, which became his own 'sound' and was very popular. He made numerous recordings, stage and radio appearances.
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJkswHieInU&feature=related
07. Sandy MacPherson (Web site)
U. K. Cinema Chains. BBC theatre organs.
08. Reginal Dixon
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c1tHi-wGZRA&feature=related Part Two.
10. Arnold Loxam
Born Bradford, Yorkshire, Engalnd, 1916.
Theatre organ and recording artist, which includes the Blakpool Tower Wurlitzer. 2006 celebrates Arnold's 90th birthday and 60 years as a theatre organist. See also: Happy Birthday, Arnold
Arnold on YouTube
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IjUcAYNyHY&p=112B73117D6920C3&playnext=1&index=149 (Pt.2 of 3)
11. Harry Farmer/Chris Hamilton
Born 1912 in Wallsall, West Midnlands, England. Died 1986. was a well known organist in Edmunton, Canada.
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YwPeChEZyaI
12. William Davies
William Arthur Davies, organist, pianist and composer: Born at Bolton, Lancashire, England on the 26th of June 1921. Died at Hastings, East Sussex, England of the 2nd of March 2006.
An extremely versatile musician. Appeared on BBC musical programmes for many years. Produced many recordings and was a musical arranger, conductor and composer of numerous tunes and film music.
13. Ronald Curtis
From the Alan Ashton series Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VoV1aQFjuE&feature=related
14. Joseph Seal
Darwen, Lancashire, England.
From the series "Organ Celebrities) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OF4WB33dZd0&feature=related
15. Don Larusso
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oom7JovYfFQ&feature=related
16. Lucien Hetu
Recording artist. Solo and with family
17. Ray Collignon (Update 8th March 2006)
Belgium organist. Strictly Hammond (Strict Tempo Medleys). Also was a band leader.
18. Klaus Wunderlich
Famous German organist. He played Hammond for many years, but then switched to Wersi.
Discology by Alan Ashton www.organ.co.uk/ashton/ www.organfax.co.uk/ashton-online.html
New Double CD set available at http://www.organ.co.uk/
19. Cor Steyn
Dutch Hammond Organist. Radio and Television and numerous recordings.
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VoV1aQFjuE&feature=related
20. Bryan Rodwell
Kieghley, Yorkshire, England. Died 1995. At home on pipes or electronic. Made his debut aged 10. Played for the ABC Cinema chain and featured at the Ritz, Hereford and, the Granada Clapham, London. He was a demonstrator for Hammond and made recordings on the Hammond 'Concorde' and was Product and Promotions Manager for Boosey & Hawkes.
New CD available http://www.organ.co.uk/
21. Raymond Wallbank (Photo Added October 2005)
Played at the North Peir Wurlitzer, Blackpool for 31 years and ocassions at the Tower Wurlitzer. He is a Blackpool organist in the grand tradition of fellows' Earnest Broadbent, Horice Finch and Reginald Dixon. Raymond died in Feb. 2010 aged 77.
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wfQnC0akcY&feature=related
22. Horice Finch
He was the organist at the Empress Ballroom, Blackpool. An injury to his hand forced him to take early retirement. Made a number of 78rpm recordings and was billed as Blackpool's 'Ace' organist.
23. John Woodhouse
Organist in Vienna, Austria.
24. George Seivewright
Show and cinema organist, Aberdeen, Scotland. Had his own band.
25. Juan Torres
He was the most famous Mexican organist and performed internationally. He made early recordings on the Hammond B-3 and later recorded on the Hammond X-66.
With thanks to Alan Ashton for corrections to information and typos.
26. Wilbur Kentwell (1914-1981)
An Australian organist.
27. Gerhard Gregor
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zp-SdtaCArQ
28. Jimmy Nairn & Noel Briggs
From the Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oHqFgfcBjMY
29. Aubrey Whelan & Laurie Wilson
From The Alan Ashton series "Organ Celebrities" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqPK6LpM0IU&feature=related
An Australian organist who plays theatre and elecric organs. He is retired and lives in the Melbourne area. David has his own music room with a number of organs and
recording equipment and plays for personal enjoyment accompanied at times by drummer Gerald Kavanaugh. Click on his name to go to a dedication page.
With thanks to Bruce MacLean for letting us know about David.
If you have any information, pictures, criticism or comments, please email me at Reidcrcwdr@aol.com
I would like this site to be a good reference for the electronic organ, both vintage and modern. Specific information on styles, stoplists, voicing and other useful information would be greatly appreciated.
N.B. Details of your favourite organists and photographs are welcome but please respect full copyright.