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Organ Drawbar Settings for Blues.


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Can anyone help me set the drawbars for the basic sounds blues people use with a B3? What I am looking for is what people do with the background drone-type sound, specifically with a slow blues. I am not interested in a funk sound, nor a sound for soloing.

I know there are several settings (or more than several). Am looking for the sound Clapton has, the Allmans have, and a Chicago Blues Band with an organ have. Any help would be greatly appreciated. This is going to be used with a Roland RD 700sx Thanks.

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A bit of theory.


Draw bar harmonics are left to right


1/2 3/2 1 2 3 4 5 6 8


Or if you take the 16 foot as the fundamental.


1 3 2 4 6 8 10 12 16


with the sound transposed down an octave, so you have to play an octave higher. That's an important point - you can't play all useful drawbar settings in the same octave.


The last drawbar does not work when percussion is on. It also drops down an octave on the last (top)octave of the instrument.


3rd harmonic soft is most common percussion. Playing just the percussion is useful for solos - but if its third remember to transpose down a fourth. (easier to make sure you use the 2 but sometimes you get here by pushing bars in and you can't do that)


As well as the bars you have to decide on:


Leslie slow/fast off. A big part of Hammond playing is varying the pace of your Leslie. The transition from slow to fast is especially characteristic. So much so that is you lay out for a few bars, slowing your Leslie so you can turn it back to fast when you re-enter on the turn-around is a common device.


Vibrato/Chorus. Changes the sound completely. Chorus 3 seems to be the default option on clonewheels.


Overdrive. As you turn up the amp on a Leslie it gets grungier. You can keep ot low for a clean sound turn it up to about 7 (on a real one) for some nice distortion or turn it all the way up for a really heavy sound. This is not fixed for all drawbar and volume pedal positions - back of either of these and the distortion goes away, which means you have to balance with the aid of your output volume. Or else you find a louder drummer if you are using a real Leslie.


Reverb. You generally don't want much when playing live. Clonewheels typically have a few choices - for authenticity the only one to use is "spring". As well as adding reverb it adds some distortion (or should) as the original spring reverbs used piezo electric crystals that were not terribly linear.


A few sounds dredged from those other threads.



standard 'jazz' is setting 888000000, 3rd harmonic

(This is 1 2 3 harmonic - play up an octave)


808000468 Theatre organ sound

838000000 Good for comping (try 5 for bit more edge)



Laidback Sounds


80000008 This gives you that weazy organ being pumped by an old geazer with a dodgy heart sound you will hear on slow blues tracks.


80800000 Mellow

00880000 This is the same setting but up an octave.

848040136 Ballads. Corny Jazz and Maizy Gospel.

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The key to the sound you're looking for are the four drawbars just before the last one. Pull out your standard low end (e.g. 888000000 or 888800000) then pull out those four a little bit (try 888046350 or something like that). If your sound is getting too muddy for big chords, push in some of the lower bars (try 648046350). I usually use this kind of setting for the lower manual and something like 888800000 maybe with second chorus for the upper one.


One more thing, try inverted V shapes like 886434568 or even 864202468.

All I need in life is a bong and a piano.
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