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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

GEORGE WRIGHT PLAYS THE CONN ELECTRONIC ORGAN


by George Wright


HIGH FIDELITY RECORDS
R 712
1957
MONO


GEORGE WRIGHT PLAYS THE CONN ELECTRONIC ORGAN as you have never before thought possible. Some of you pipe organ fans may question this use of George's pipe organ talents. To explain, Mr. Wright has had many requests from owners of electronic organs to record an album played on an electronic organ. There are more than 500,000 such instruments in homes throughout this country and abroad, so considering the potential of his listeners, Mr. Wright agreed to make this recording, even though he prefers theater pipe organ to an electronic organ.

George Wright's intention here is to show what can be done with an electronic organ to make it sound like a pipe organ. There is no doubt the electronic "organ" is ingenious in it imitation of true pipe organ sound. Even the layman, however, can detect the considerable difference between the best electronic organ and an organ sounding from actual pipes, which is, in the strict sense, a true musical instrument.

IN his search for the most truly imitative electronic organ, George Wright decided upon the Conn Electric Organ, which when used with the Electro Music's Leslie Organ Speaker, produces the best electronic organ sound. The Conn Electronic organ is manufactured by C. G. Conn, Ltd., of Elkhart, Indiana, long makers of musical instruments such as saxophones, trumpets, etc.

We don't want to leave the impression from preceding comment that the electronic organ is without its proper place. Pipe organs are very expensive, bulky, and because of this, necessarily restricted to a few, compared with the larger number who would own them, circumstances permitting. Definitely, the electronic organ has its place, since it costs no more than a good grand piano and takes up no more space. By this means, a half a million people or more who otherwise couldn't, are able to play and synthetic organ sounds. At some future date, electronic science may perfect an even closer imitation of true pipe organ sound.

As most of you are aware, George Wright is THE theater style organist. He has cleverly played things on the Conn Electronic Organ that are distinctly novel and entertaining. The Wright virtuosity is always a real musical treat.

The master recording of this album was made on a three-track Ampex magnetic tape recorder, using three Telefunken microphones. This tape was later transcribed to a master acetate disc cut on a Scully automatically variable pitch lathe, using Westrex "B" series heated stylus cutting head. Pressings are custom pure Vinyl.

This recording is also available on prerecorded HIFI-TAPE for both monoaural and stacked head stereophonic tape playback.

USE STANDARD RIAA ORTHO BASS BOOST AND TREBLE ROLL OFF





SIDE A:



MADIERA
HOW COME YOU DO ME LIKE YOU DO
AUNT BLANCHE'S BOOGIE
LA BORROCHITA
COOL TANGO
SHE'S FUNNY THAT WAY
BEER BARREL POLKA

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SIDE B:



UNDER PARIS SKIES
THAT HONKY TONK MELODY
PAVANE
RAGGING THE SCALE
WRAP YOUR TROUBLES IN DREAMS
THE CACTUS POLKA

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Editor's note: the atom age held so much promise didn't it? Men still wore impeccable threads and close-cropped hair, women and minorities were becoming full-stock citizens with inalienable rights and wars were no longer a grueling trench warfare but a chess match of wills and technology. Then George Wright came along and blew us all away with the Conn Organ and it tilted the axis of the world in a different direction. Towards a Church of the Subgenius. Not lazy but elegantly content in one's present state. One who sees the beauty of being less than an ubermensch but more than a hapless hippy. That is, a goal-oriented person who isn't afraid to flop on the couch and take a nap and let that goal simmer in the pot. Thank you Geo. Wright.

2 comments:

paulrjacobs said...

Ah', so the age has come in the field of electronics where the digital facsimile has become the successor to the purely electronically synthesized organ- AKA tube,transistor,large scale integrated circuits (LSI), electrostatic reed, and tone wheel (Hammond organ). I am the die hard analog lover born in 1965. I imagine the die hard analog lover born in 1905 called the theater pipe organ 'real' ( because it was real) and the electronic organ, which tried to mimic it, a fake. This George Wright album does indeed sound somewhat electronic, but it holds up. As the years went on Conn actually perfected the purely electronic circuits to do more than just imitate. Conn organs enveloped the entire tonal spectrum of the theater pipe organ and although the tones generated were electronic, they were real and had depth. The tonal character of a good individual tone generated electronic theater organ became real to the die hard analog lover of 1905. The first qualification to be real is that something must be real. This die hard analog lover born in 1965 does not think a digital facsimile is real. Even though digital samples of a real pipe organ sound like a real pipe organ I know it's not real, but hey, I'll put aside my differences and maybe even come to love the new Hauptwerk and Miditzer virtual digital pipe organs, but they will never feel real- like a real pipe organ, or a real transistorized electronic theater organ. I'm currently installing Hauptwerk via midi onto my transistorized Thomas Palace III electronic theater organ. Mixing the two sounds just might be the answer, as the Thomas actually sounds far less like a theater organ than the later Conn's. We'll see. With digital something is missing- it's the organ!

paulrjacobs said...

Just last week I preempted a would be -'TUBE AMP FOR SALE...make offer & will pull from organ.' So after seeing it was a Conn 815 like the one George Wright played on this record ( Actually the last 2 digits are cabinet style, so in this case the 15 in 815 is a BLONDE FINISH)I immediately alerted the seller that this rare Conn 815 was just too good an organ to rob the amp from and scrap the organ. Then after doing so I realized the Ebay seller was just 18 miles from ME! Wow! So after another quick Email I was on the phone with him. We struck up a deal- $175 for the organ and he threw in the two 1-15" cabs and two 2-10" cabs ( both just utility black, but I've yet to find out if the 15" cabs are the powered cabs with a 15 watt tube amp in each, or if they are just speaker cabs. No big deal, the organ is in beautiful condition complete w/ 32 pedal board and nice matching original bench. Just one tab appears to be missing- the 3rd from right in the first large group of tabs from the left. Anyone know what it is? Okay, another thing is that the 810 and 820 are different years and so the 820 had some change that the 810 did not have. SO which is my soon to be 815? An 810 or 815? The tab layout is identical to the organ on the back cover of the George Wright album.
ALSO LISTEN TO 'PAUL MICKELSON CONN CLASSIC' on YouTube to hear this model. and listen to ' John Gart Organs On The March ' for same Conn model.
The 821 to 825 were transistorized, but all the others previous were 100% vacuum tube, including the the George Wright and Paul Mickelson and John Gart records.