Keyboards and such

What are guitar strings made of? For technical questions about music and gear.

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heather
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Keyboards and such

Post by heather »

What kind of keyboard(s) does Sean use?
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Post by agnew »

Sean has been using two keyboards: a 70's Rhoads piano with a distortion box, which is the same kind of piano they used in Harvey Danger, and an 80's Roland synthesizer called a Juno-106 that belongs to John. But they've been talking about simplifying that and only using one keyboard, mostly because a Rhoads weighs about 100 pounds. We'll just have to wait and see when they hit the road again.
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Post by mildlyrestarted »

agnew -- who are you? :) you are all-knowing.
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Post by grant »

Just been reading up on the Optigan. Splendid, stirring stuff. Optical sampling -- just lovely.

Nonetheless... I'm wondering two things:
First, how an Optigan might compare with other sampling instruments like the mellotron, in general character and timbre and what-not.

Second, and most contentiously, what might the touring ensemble consider when deciding to "hit the road" with a vintage instrument? Especially when budgets don't allow for teams of porters to bear the great bulky things on and off stage.

I've had the mixed fortune to have assisted in carrying a Rhodes piano and my back has never fully recovered. Yet the synthesized sounds aren't quite, some say, up to snuff!
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Post by John »

Hooray, these are the nerdy questions I live for. In my experience the Optigan is extremely flimsy. They were made for rec rooms and sold by Wards or Sears. The melotron actually plays a loop of tape, so it's pretty organic, whereas the Optigan "reads" little floppy plastic "records" by shining a light through them. I've opened a couple of Optigans and they always seem to be filled with spiders.

As for the vintage keyboards, they are my bane. The modern samplers sometimes sound fine but they always suck to play unless you spend 3000 and then they weigh as much as a Rhoads. Except... for the Nord Electro, which is foxy, sounds great and plays pretty darn good. We're getting one.
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Post by grant »

And what samples will you be feeding into the Nord Electro?


Oh, wait a bit -- just looked at the site:
http://www.clavia.se/nordelectro/

where it says:
The organ in the Electro 2 is based on a digital simulation of the mechanical tone wheels of the B-3 organ. It offers a number of very innovative solutions to mimic the typical B-3 sound. The piano section comprises several carefully multi-sampled electric piano instruments. As a bonus we also included an acoustic grand piano (concert model). The Electro 2 also sports a USB interface for quick and easy download of new piano sounds.


Does it allow one to feed in sounds from elsewhere, then?
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Post by John »

Yes, but the bottleneck is the technology, as always. We need it to be simple, because we are not electrical engineers. If there are too many numbers and switches, we get sad. Unless, of course, we're talking about guitar effects pedals...
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Post by Moni »

guitar effect pedals seem to have an interesting effect on musicians... i remember ken happily hopping around (and frequently stepping on the wrong one) on/near/over those thingies...
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Post by AffluentSuburbOfAtlanta »

Liz wrote:guitar effect pedals seem to have an interesting effect on musicians... i remember ken happily hopping around (and frequently stepping on the wrong one) on/near/over those thingies...


you're only jealous cos you can't wail and screech and howl with a piano pedal! ;-)

:-)

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Post by grant »

Actually, I've found it quite surprising, the sounds you can make with a simple Casio keyboard by simply running it through a pedal or two into a guitar amp (overdriven, with reverb). And then miking the amp.
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Post by AffluentSuburbOfAtlanta »

grant wrote:Actually, I've found it quite surprising, the sounds you can make with a simple Casio keyboard by simply running it through a pedal or two into a guitar amp (overdriven, with reverb). And then miking the amp.


but you need the guitar pedals, see?! exactly my point. i play my mandolin through a guitar amp. nice sound! :-D

:-)

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Post by Moni »

the problem with pianos/keyboards is simply that you have to sit down while playing. i think tha't why many people on keys look a little pissy by default
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Post by AffluentSuburbOfAtlanta »

what about this most 1980's of inventions, the strap-on keyboard? i still have one somewhere, a yamaha. weird thing all in all...

:-)

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grant
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Post by grant »

the problem with pianos/keyboards is simply that you have to sit down while playing. i think tha't why many people on keys look a little pissy by default.


Au contraire!


Not all keyboardists sit:


Image . Image . Image . Image


Nor are all keyboards designed for sitting:

Image . Image . Image . Image
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Merlin
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nice post

Post by Merlin »

Grant, regrettably, I sometimes go a month or more without mentioning that you're the wind beneath my wings.
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Moni
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Nicely done indeed...

Post by Moni »

... and as you can see: not sitting keyboardists = happy!
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grant
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Post by grant »

Except, perhaps, Ms Marni Rice. She's not happy, she's mysterious.


A accordionist fatale.


And Merlin, I would say that you too are the wind beneath my wings, except that would lead to an awful lot of wind, and quite possibly some damage to our feathers. I will, however, attest that if loving you is wrong, I have no desire to be right.
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Post by meg »

I can't believe my dear melodica has been left out again.

Image
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Post by royal »

Doing a search for a good strap-on guitar image led me to the band Keytar and, more importantly, this image:

Image

See, doesn't he look happy?
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Post by LngHrvWntrsDngr »

it says they have a cd called no strings attached......but isnt that an nsync album? Dont ask me why i know that or think that.....cuz ill just tell u......my friends r crazy.......and *confession time* i used to listen to the local top 40 station........
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