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Jimmy Smith�s overdrive on �The Sermon�?


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Each time I listen to Jimmy Smiths The Sermon I marvel at the overdrive sound he gets. How much of that is from the Hammond organ itself and how much is from the tubes of the Soeaker Cabinet? Is it possible to simulate that kind of overdrive with a small tube preamp? I run my Mojo 61 to a single or a pair of good Electro Voice SxA360 500W solid-state powered speakers. My Mojo 61 Overdrive is OK but it doesnt sound like that sermon over drive which I presume is made by using real tubes.?

 

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Harry Likas was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and also helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book." Harry spends his time teaching jazz piano online and playing solo piano gigs.

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It what an all tube signal chain does. Preamp in the organ, tube amp in the Leslie. The new organs can model that but it's never going to be exact. I think this is what those Tall and Fat pedals help you get.

Live: Korg Kronos 2 88, Nord Electro 5d Nord Lead A1

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I think that is correct. No Percussion or Rotary.

His C3 is subtle, more subtle than the level 64 on my Mojo.

Did C3 levels vary much over the real Hammond Organs?

That track has his greatest sound, imo. It simmers with power tube overdrive. I want.

How can a modeled effect solid state like the vent or tall and fat be a tube sound?

Auger uses actual tube preamps to his JBL PA. Is there a little tube preamp that comes close to the Sermon sound. I doubt it....

Harry Likas was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and also helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book." Harry spends his time teaching jazz piano online and playing solo piano gigs.

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If Sal Azzarelli were still alive, he would know for sure. It could be a B-2, BV, BC.... who knows? Perhaps someone else on this forum does know.

 

This recording by the way was NOT recorded at Rudy Van Gelder's studio ( it was recorded at Manhattan Towers) , so there is a very good possibility that this was Jimmy's personal gigging organ. The dates of the LP are 1957 and 1958.

 

Anyway... one of the cool things about the Viscount Legend Live is the BC sample. It has great non foldback bass and the more shallow chorus vibrato. I really like that sample for comping. And the Legend overdrive is nice too.

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I've listened to youtube videos featuring the Loundsberry pedals, but so far I'm not sold on it as getting close enough to justify the extra hassle of a stompbox.

 

In general, given the objectives of authenticity, reliability, and portability, you can only emphasize 2 of the 3.

Gigging: Crumar Mojo 61, Hammond SKPro

Home: Vintage Vibe 64

 

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OK, a slight variation on the OP's question, how do you get that specific sound on an actual Hammond console? Specifically the overdrive. My BCV is getting close to working, but it sounds very clean, much closer to the Blue Note/Van Gelder sound than the Sermon sound. What kind of tweaks can be done to get that kind of edge?

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I'll try to answer without getting really techie. On a Hammond console (A, B, C, later tonewheel models, etc.) with a typical tube preamp in the console, Maximum voltage of the audio signal gets up to about 30 volts peak to peak (quite a bit higher voltage than more recent circuitry), and the output is balanced.

 

When this goes into a Leslie like the original 122, this signal first goes through a resistive divider network (the Leslie's own volume control), then is applied to the two grids of a 12AU7 tube, which really is two tubes in one glass envelope. The amplified output from the plates of the 12AU7 is then coupled to the grids of the two 6550 power output tubes. These tubes are known as power tetrodes, each having two grids for different purposes.

The DC Plate voltage on the 12AU7's plates is about 120 volts. DC Plate voltage on the 6550's is about 420 volts DC, coming through the output transformer's primary winding. Screen grid voltage is about 330 VDC, and remains relatively constant (the 0D3 voltage regulator tube is used to keep it relatively constant).

The secondary winding of the output transformer is much lower voltage but more current, and is used to drive the horn and bass speaker through a crossover network that sends the higher frequency sounds to the horn, and lower sounds to the 15" speaker.

Current Leslies use a solid-state rectifier system connected to the high voltage windings of the power transformer, although vintage models used a 5U4GB rectifier tube.

BTW, there is a second 12AU7 tube in the 122, only one half of it is used, and it drives the relay that changes power to the slow and fast motors.

 

End of tech detail. The two common things above that are NOT duplicated by any modern tube circuits found in pedals are High Voltage on the plates, and TUBES - little ones and big ones. Did I mention that nobody on earth builds modern tubes to the quality level of the 1940-1985 tubes. Modern tubes are a pathetic shadow of the old ones. NOS tubes (meaning new - but old stock) command a very premium price. Even well used but still functional old tubes are sought out for their remaining quality.

 

Tubes are inherently non-linear to a degree, only in a small area in the middle of their amplification curve is close to linear. This non-linearity is a part of the "tube distortion" that is sought as being the Holy Grail. The output transformer contributes its own non-linearity as an additional part. Even the power supply on the older ones using a TUBE rectifier has "sag," where the output voltage goes down as the current drawn increases.

 

Just like "key click" was considered undesirable by the inventor, this distortion when the circuitry is overdriven was considered undesirable (the thought was to add additional Leslies, so that none of them had to be driven so hard - besides, this creates opportunity to sell more Leslies).

 

Kind of the same thing happened with tube guitar amplifiers. The sound that guitarists dream of today happened because a poverty stricken blues guitarist couldn't afford something like a Twin Reverb, or even a Princeton - they bought the cheapest amp available, and cranked the volume up to maximum so it could be heard over the rest of the band.

 

For both guitarists and Hammond type organists, this imperfection became the most desirable of features.

 

Modern keyboards, amplifiers, and pedals that have a "tube" added typically use a new 12AU7 or 12AX7, but first off, this is distortion from the preamp level, not the power amp level. Second, they run in what is called "starved plate" mode with a plate voltage typically of 12 to 20 volts. They are operating in an area that the tube was never designed to run.

 

My little Fender Blues Jr guitar amp is an early US made model that has had numerous modifications to circuitry, and ALL the tubes replaced with real 1960-70 tubes. Sounds like an itty bitty Twin Reverb that is only painfully loud, instead of PAINFULLY LOUD.

 

But, that's what it takes for the sound. The Vent is an all solid-state pedal that manages to pretty closely sound like a 122 Leslie, including overdrive. Still misses the swirling air if one is right next to the Leslie, but very close to the sound of a recorded Leslie.

 

 

Howard Grand|Hamm SK1-73|Kurz PC2|PC2X|PC3|PC3X|PC361; QSC K10's

HP DAW|Epi Les Paul & LP 5-str bass|iPad mini2

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

Jim

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Regarding the C3 chorus, yes, the depth varied over the years. Different resistor values were used on the early models and changed in later years. My 1956 B3 has a more shallow chorus than my 60s A100s.

 

The great thing about the Mojo is that you can easily adjust the CV depth. I dial mine back a bit from the straight up 64 value to match my B3.

Endorsing Artist/Ambassador for MAG Organs and Motion Sound Amplifiers
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His C3 is subtle, more subtle than the level 64 on my Mojo. Did C3 levels vary much over the real Hammond Organs?

PDQ: Potentially Dumb Question: What's the difference between subtle C3 and just C2?

 

C3 scans the full delay line, C2 scans 2/3 of it, and C1 scans 1/3 of it.

Moe

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"I keep wanting to like it's sound, but every demo seems to demonstrate that it has the earth-shaking punch and peerless sonics of the Roland Gaia. " - Tusker

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No, you cannot get that sound from a small preamp pedal. It comes from POWER amp tubes.

 

this will get you pretty close:

 

https://reverb.com/ca/item/1612940-speakeasy-absolute-modeling-amp-ama

 

sure it will, but they were expensive when new and are no longer made and take up 2 rack spaces. I passed on that one (belonged to Bruce Whaler, who doesn't post here much) and another one recently (another forum member whom I can't recall). Want it but not badly enough. Mate Stubb loves his, hammonddave sold his years ago. Don't know anyone who is gigging with one anymore.

:nopity:
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Pretty sure this recording was made with Jimmy Smith's road organ, which was a B3 (with non-functioning percussion for awhile) and a 31H. The overdrive sounds to me like the series III amp, with a quartet of 6V6 power tubes being driven hard.

 

Your Mojo ain't gonna sound like that.

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So, you're thinking a 21H or a 31H? I gotta get my 31H in playing shape soon.

 

Here's Jimmy playing a few years later with a pair of 31Hs...I wonder if that was his personal rig? http://www.heliotricity.com/jimmysmithgrinder.html

 

(Edit - did you just edit that post, or am really that asleep? Regardless, I'll leave this up because the video is great. :) )

Hammond: L111, M100, M3, BC, CV, Franken CV, A100, D152, C3, B3

Leslie: 710, 760, 51C, 147, 145, 122, 22H, 31H

Yamaha: CP4, DGX-620, DX7II-FD-E!, PF85, DX9

Roland: VR-09, RD-800

 

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I'm reminded of and impressed by the fact that back in those days a musician could go into the studio and cut a 20 minute single. :D:cool:

PD

 

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return."--E. Ahbez "Nature Boy"

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If Sal Azzarelli were still alive, he would know for sure. It could be a B-2, BV, BC.... who knows? Perhaps someone else on this forum does know.

 

This recording by the way was NOT recorded at Rudy Van Gelder's studio ( it was recorded at Manhattan Towers) , so there is a very good possibility that this was Jimmy's personal gigging organ. The dates of the LP are 1957 and 1958.

 

Anyway... one of the cool things about the Viscount Legend Live is the BC sample. It has great non foldback bass and the more shallow chorus vibrato. I really like that sample for comping. And the Legend overdrive is nice too.

 

I wish he was alive, I miss seeing him everytime I am in Buffalo.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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No, you cannot get that sound from a small preamp pedal. It comes from POWER amp tubes.

 

this will get you pretty close:

 

https://reverb.com/ca/item/1612940-speakeasy-absolute-modeling-amp-ama

 

sure it will, but they were expensive when new and are no longer made and take up 2 rack spaces. I passed on that one (belonged to Bruce Whaler, who doesn't post here much) and another one recently (another forum member whom I can't recall). Want it but not badly enough. Mate Stubb loves his, hammonddave sold his years ago. Don't know anyone who is gigging with one anymore.

 

Didn't I sell you mine a couple years ago?

Live: Korg Kronos 2 88, Nord Electro 5d Nord Lead A1

Toys: Roland FA08, Novation Ultranova, Moog LP, Roland SP-404SX, Roland JX10,Emu MK6

www.bksband.com

www.echoesrocks.com

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I'll try to answer without getting really techie. On a Hammond console (A, B, C, later tonewheel models, etc.) with a typical tube preamp in the console, Maximum voltage of the audio signal gets up to about 30 volts peak to peak (quite a bit higher voltage than more recent circuitry), and the output is balanced.

 

When this goes into a Leslie like the original 122, this signal first goes through a resistive divider network (the Leslie's own volume control), then is applied to the two grids of a 12AU7 tube, which really is two tubes in one glass envelope. The amplified output from the plates of the 12AU7 is then coupled to the grids of the two 6550 power output tubes. These tubes are known as power tetrodes, each having two grids for different purposes.

The DC Plate voltage on the 12AU7's plates is about 120 volts. DC Plate voltage on the 6550's is about 420 volts DC, coming through the output transformer's primary winding. Screen grid voltage is about 330 VDC, and remains relatively constant (the 0D3 voltage regulator tube is used to keep it relatively constant).

The secondary winding of the output transformer is much lower voltage but more current, and is used to drive the horn and bass speaker through a crossover network that sends the higher frequency sounds to the horn, and lower sounds to the 15" speaker.

Current Leslies use a solid-state rectifier system connected to the high voltage windings of the power transformer, although vintage models used a 5U4GB rectifier tube.

BTW, there is a second 12AU7 tube in the 122, only one half of it is used, and it drives the relay that changes power to the slow and fast motors.

 

End of tech detail. The two common things above that are NOT duplicated by any modern tube circuits found in pedals are High Voltage on the plates, and TUBES - little ones and big ones. Did I mention that nobody on earth builds modern tubes to the quality level of the 1940-1985 tubes. Modern tubes are a pathetic shadow of the old ones. NOS tubes (meaning new - but old stock) command a very premium price. Even well used but still functional old tubes are sought out for their remaining quality.

 

Tubes are inherently non-linear to a degree, only in a small area in the middle of their amplification curve is close to linear. This non-linearity is a part of the "tube distortion" that is sought as being the Holy Grail. The output transformer contributes its own non-linearity as an additional part. Even the power supply on the older ones using a TUBE rectifier has "sag," where the output voltage goes down as the current drawn increases.

 

Just like "key click" was considered undesirable by the inventor, this distortion when the circuitry is overdriven was considered undesirable (the thought was to add additional Leslies, so that none of them had to be driven so hard - besides, this creates opportunity to sell more Leslies).

 

Kind of the same thing happened with tube guitar amplifiers. The sound that guitarists dream of today happened because a poverty stricken blues guitarist couldn't afford something like a Twin Reverb, or even a Princeton - they bought the cheapest amp available, and cranked the volume up to maximum so it could be heard over the rest of the band.

 

For both guitarists and Hammond type organists, this imperfection became the most desirable of features.

 

Modern keyboards, amplifiers, and pedals that have a "tube" added typically use a new 12AU7 or 12AX7, but first off, this is distortion from the preamp level, not the power amp level. Second, they run in what is called "starved plate" mode with a plate voltage typically of 12 to 20 volts. They are operating in an area that the tube was never designed to run.

 

My little Fender Blues Jr guitar amp is an early US made model that has had numerous modifications to circuitry, and ALL the tubes replaced with real 1960-70 tubes. Sounds like an itty bitty Twin Reverb that is only painfully loud, instead of PAINFULLY LOUD.

 

But, that's what it takes for the sound. The Vent is an all solid-state pedal that manages to pretty closely sound like a 122 Leslie, including overdrive. Still misses the swirling air if one is right next to the Leslie, but very close to the sound of a recorded Leslie.

 

Great Post. Nice writing. I could visualize the schematic in my mind as you described the tube amp. I wish all technical documentation was written that clearly.

 

thanks

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

-Mark Twain

 

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No, you cannot get that sound from a small preamp pedal. It comes from POWER amp tubes.

 

this will get you pretty close:

 

https://reverb.com/ca/item/1612940-speakeasy-absolute-modeling-amp-ama

 

sure it will, but they were expensive when new and are no longer made and take up 2 rack spaces. I passed on that one (belonged to Bruce Whaler, who doesn't post here much) and another one recently (another forum member whom I can't recall). Want it but not badly enough. Mate Stubb loves his, hammonddave sold his years ago. Don't know anyone who is gigging with one anymore.

 

 

Going to be selling mine. PM me if you want it. Will post on classifieds. A two space rack is pretty easy to gig with when compared to a 150 pound leslie. Great piece of gear that will get you the kind of OD that is being discussed here.

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[quote=WastrelGreat Post. Nice writing. I could visualize the schematic in my mind as you described the tube amp. I wish all technical documentation was written that clearly.

 

thanks

 

Appreciate that - I was actually looking at a PDF of the 122 schematic while writing it, to be sure that my detail information was correct. In my computer business, although I don't develop software, I do some customization and provide the client with documentation on how to use it.

Howard Grand|Hamm SK1-73|Kurz PC2|PC2X|PC3|PC3X|PC361; QSC K10's

HP DAW|Epi Les Paul & LP 5-str bass|iPad mini2

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

Jim

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No, you cannot get that sound from a small preamp pedal. It comes from POWER amp tubes.

 

this will get you pretty close:

 

https://reverb.com/ca/item/1612940-speakeasy-absolute-modeling-amp-ama

 

sure it will, but they were expensive when new and are no longer made and take up 2 rack spaces. I passed on that one (belonged to Bruce Whaler, who doesn't post here much) and another one recently (another forum member whom I can't recall). Want it but not badly enough. Mate Stubb loves his, hammonddave sold his years ago. Don't know anyone who is gigging with one anymore.

 

 

Going to be selling mine. PM me if you want it. Will post on classifieds. A two space rack is pretty easy to gig with when compared to a 150 pound leslie. Great piece of gear that will get you the kind of OD that is being discussed here.

 

Sent you a pm Im interested.

"Ive been playing Hammond since long before anybody paid me to play one, I didn't do it to be cool, I didnt do it to make a statement......I just liked it "

 

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On FB tonight and an old Buffalo Musician friend posts about the influence the local group Raven had on all musicians at that time in that town. They'd relocated to NY City and settled into Steve Paul's Scene where they soon became the favorite band of young Jimmy Hendrix! This album was cut in 1967. The song "Lets Eat" is what made me want to play organ. Here's some overdrive tone you wont get with a pedal from Greg or anybody else. It is truly glorious, and the playing from Jimmy Calire (one of my greatest influences of all time) is just plain DEEP :cool:

[video:youtube]

Don't rush me. I'm playing as slowly as I can!

 

www.stevenathanmusic.com

https://apple.co/2EGpYXK

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Wow, that is some incredible organ sound and playing . How does he do that unique thing , the part where it sounds so sonicly time displaced ? I never heard such before.

Harry Likas was the Technical Editor of Mark Levine's "The Jazz Theory Book" and also helped develop "The Jazz Piano Book." Harry spends his time teaching jazz piano online and playing solo piano gigs.

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That entire track is really distorted, which tells me that part of the organ tone is coming from whatever recording chain they had, which sounds really primitive. Probably overdriving the mic preamps / compressor / tape.

 

That said, he's definitely using some kind of overdrive pedal on the Hammond or perhaps a different amp. No Leslie amp sounds like that even when you dime it. That kind of tone is anti-thetical to everything Hammond and Leslie were trying to do. He may have customized the Leslie with higher wattage drivers and powered it through a guitar amp of some kind to get that kind of overdrive.

 

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When I had a B-2, I found it much easier to get it into overdrive land than any of the 3 series organs I have had.

 

I can remember just putting some weaker tubes in the B-2 preamp and it could sound pretty grungy. The problem was getting it to sound clean again, which I actually prefer.

 

One of the things I like about clonewheel organs is their ability to keep distortion OUT of the sound. I particularly do not like distortion on lower manual chords and unfortunately I hear it much too frequently on tonewheel Hammonds that are not immaculately maintained.

 

This includes the influence of treble drivers which are often the source of distortion themselves.

 

The trick is to have grunge when you want it, and a clean sound when you need it. Later in his career Jimmy Smith insisted on having two leslies, and mu guess is that he didn't want distortion.

 

Most of his mid and later period recordings use a much cleaner sound.

 

It's interesting to hear the early recordings and guess what might have been going on.

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he's definitely using some kind of overdrive pedal on the Hammond or perhaps a different amp. No Leslie amp sounds like that even when you dime it. He may have customized the Leslie with higher wattage drivers and powered it through a guitar amp of some kind to get that kind of overdrive.

 

Don't think so. I saw them live in the 60s and Jimmy never had anything other than the organ and Leslie (and a beat up upright). My guess is that he may have swapped the 12A tubes. I did that myself as a youngster. Off the top of my aging head, I'm a little unsure, but I believe we used to take out the 12AU7s and put AT7s in. I had an M once and I did that to the Leslie to get mare volume and more grunge, and I had to block the Leslie in place because it would "walk" across the stage!

 

That kind of tone is anti-thetical to everything Hammond and Leslie were trying to do.

That was the intention! :cool:

Don't rush me. I'm playing as slowly as I can!

 

www.stevenathanmusic.com

https://apple.co/2EGpYXK

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