North Suburban Hammond Organ Society


The NSHOS pro team consists of the four professional keyboard musicians in the NSHOS, in alphabetical order, Jim Gregory, Tim Holloran, Eric Larson and Gary Phillips.

For a start, we presented Jim Gregory's younger son, Christian, who played Für Elise on Jim's Kawai keyboard which can become an excellent piano. It is very encouraging to see a young person getting interested in good music and to hear him play. It's evident that Christian is on the road to becoming a great keyboard musician like his father. We, as a group, should do all that we can to encourage young people to pursue the performance of music, for it can truly lead to a lifetime of rewarding and gratifying experience, as well as bringing joy to others.

It is difficult to describe this program briefly, but perhaps the best description of all was the very enthusiastic applause and attention that greeted everything we did. Much of the program consisted of each musician in turn playing a short set of one or two selections, occasionally Jim Gregory and I played some duets including a fast, boogie arrangement of the famous Glenn Miller piece, In the Mood Jim took the melodic solo for most of this piece, I provided a boogie bass figure on the pedals, and Jim did much of his solo work on the Kawai keyboard.

For several other selections, I acted as a drummer for Jim, using the Yamaha PSR 420 as a rhythm section to produce a hand-played rhythm track. For the well known song, Alley Cat, Jim, Tim and Gary joined forces as a trio. Among several pieces of particular interest were Jim's Dueling Banjos, Tim's Danny Boy, Gary's version of Caravan, and my 12th Street Rag. Each piece was in a different style; for it does not take too long after one learns the basics of how to play before a degree of individualism sets in. The five instruments which we used were; the NSHOS' X66, Tim and Gary's X66, Jim's Concorde, and also a Kawai keyboard and a Yamaha keyboard. The club's X66 was fitted with four DJ type speakers and also one bass speaker in addition to its standard series 12 Hammond tone cabinet and a 122 Leslie. The Concorde had two separate Leslies in addition to its self-containd speakers, and Tim and Gary's X had two series 12 and two Leslie cabinets as well. The club's X also had 3 digital signal processors for various effects.

This by the way was a first; we had never put any extra processors or speakers on the club's X. This is an area of experimentation where we will try other types of speakers and differing placements at future events to secure the best over-all sound. One thing of note was that for this particular event, we set up at the opposite end of the hall from where we usually set up. At one time, there was a stage here, and the bay for the stage is of course still here as that's part of the building. After careful listening, we have decided that setting up as usual at the other end of the hall is definitely preferable, as the dimensions of the bay are just right to introduce a profound resonance at the pitch of Middle C on the pedals. Interestingly, the wavelength of that pitch is just about exactly the same as the distance between the floor and ceiling of the bay, and its two side walls are exactly twice that wavelength. These dimensions were probably the cause of this. But in spite of that, the event was definitely a great success. We had about twice the normal number of people in the audience, and the enthusiastic whistles and cheers and numerous requests to do this type of program again soon were all the proof that we needed to know that this was a truly successful event. And we will do more of these in the future, that you can count on. —ECL

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