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Thread: How to start?

  1. #1
    ppp Pianississmo AgeJonny100's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2018

    How to start?

    I'm new to this forum, and found it by pure luck.
    My interest for music started when I was 18 with the Great Highland Bagpipe which has 3 pipes in addition to the chanter flute.
    But always when i visited a certain chapel in the woods outside Oslo, I would sit down at the organ to play on the organ without knowing how to play it.
    But I did not at that time understand or think about that maybe this was something for me.
    Now at the age of 61 I have started to consider selling my Scottish and Irish pipes, and access the organ world instead.
    I have just recently ordered for a book as the introduction to learn organ playing. The recommendation of this tutor says that it also teaches how to use the pedals. So now is the question to you who are experienced: What kind of organ should I start with as a complete beginner?
    I have found this keyboard that is without pedals: Studiologic Numa Organ 2. It has lots of features, but is it a good idea? I fancy church organs, but do not mind playing other styles if it ever comes to doing that. I need to learn the finger technique of course.
    Do you, the members of this forum, have any ideas or suggestions?
    By the way, I live in the east southern part of Norway, 60 kilometers from Oslo, and close to the Swedish border.
    I would be grateful for any advice....
    All the best,
    Age Jonny

  2. #2
    Moderator myorgan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    New England

    First, welcome to the Forum! Have you ever heard of anyone in your country with the surname of Sæverud?

    It sounds like you are on the road to beginning to learn the organ, however, you neglected to let us know if you can read music. If you can and have some keyboard skills, I would recommend getting an organ with pedals. The general principle is that classical/church organs have two 61-note keyboards, and 32 pedals on the floor. On the other hand, if you want to play some other musical styles, then perhaps a home organ that meets the requirements above would come in helpful.

    Unfortunately, I'm in the USA, so I probably won't be able to advise on vendors, but we do have some very knowledgeable members (& moderators) who are very familiar with the organs available in the Scandinavian countries.

    My best wishes on your endeavors, and others should weigh in within a day. Again, welcome to the Forum.

    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 4 Pianos

  3. #3
    f Forte regeron's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Ontario, Canada
    Can you keep your pipes and still learn organ? It seems a shame to give up all that talent and history you have with those instruments.

    In various parts of Europe, there are pipe organs with smaller manuals, too, maybe only 54 keys, and possibly only 30 pedals, or even something else. They are still beautiful and there is lots to learn.

    Your English seems good. Check for organ method books in both English and Norwegian (or any other language you speak). Get something that covers basics of using both your fingers and feet. If you can find a teacher or even a non-teaching organist who could observe you from time to time and give you tips on what you are doing well and what needs to improve.

    Good luck. The organ is a wonderful instrument. Hope you enjoy learning.

  4. #4
    pp Pianissimo lcid's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Medina, OH USA

    Lightbulb Method books

    Welcome to the Forum. There are two recent threads going on dealing with method books started by MusicGuy. The discussion and information may prove interesting and helpful to you. BTW my wife's father was born in Helsinki, Finland. Your location in Norway will be of interest to her.

    John Stainer Organ Learning Books - The Organ, and Complete Organ Method

    Need advice - Learning in old age; self-paced training before taking organ lessons

    Happily retired organist/pianist from the Church of the Brethren (fifteen years)...Allen ADC-4300-DK.
    Primary occupation structural and civil engineering.
    Home...Wurlitzer (ES) Orgatron Series 20 Serial #11608 (retrofitted with MIDI and VPO-Hauptwerk) with a Leslie 44.
    Hammond BC Serial #5070 with Leslie 31A tallboy tone cabinet
    A.L. Swan antique pump organ (C.1852) Cherry Valley NY
    Member of the Lutheran Church (LCMS); traditional worship.

  5. #5
    ff Fortissimo Organfella's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Cape town South Africa
    I simply love it when I see other folks in the "grey haired" category getting serious about the organ - I am one of them!

    Welcome to the Forum and please do not get rid of those bagpipes.... I am not even close to being Sco'ish or Irish but man, don't I just love the beautiful sounds they make! Can you post us some of your playing on them?

    Thanks for joining the mob - you will not be sorry!

    "Don't make war, make music!" Hammonds, Lowreys, Yamaha's, Gulbransens, Baldwin, Technics, Johannus. Reed organs. Details on request...

  6. #6
    mp Mezzo-Piano andijah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Germany, near Frankfurt (Main)
    I always kept my "old" instruments when starting something new, so I second @regeron's idea to keep the pipes.
    When learning to play the organ, try to find a teacher or a book that doesn't omit the pedals. Otherwise you might as well learn to play the piano (also a very nice instrument).

    Maybe there's a market for used (digital) organs in Norway, too. In Germany there certainly is, and if you have the space at home, you could get a two manual practice organ with a pedalboard and start your adventurous journey.

  7. #7
    f Forte regeron's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Ontario, Canada
    Also, in terms of learning to play the organ, there are so many interlocking skills that we often spend time on only one or two at a time. If you spend time to learn manuals alone or pedal alone, you are still improving your skills, so don't look down on any opportunity to improve your manual skills, either with or without the pedal.

  8. #8
    ppp Pianississmo AgeJonny100's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Thanks very much for all the advice. I have lots of correspondence in English due to my job.
    I have ordered for a beginner's tutor book for the organ, for both fingers and pedals. It is a new book in Norwegian called "Preludium" where you don't have to have any experience from piano playing, as so many books seem to presume. I shall consider all the advice of you, the Forum members. When I found this forum I was actually looking for something else. I was thrilled to find it. The Scottish pipes that I have were made by Wallace in Glasgow four years ago. The chanter has a nice, sweet sound. I wish you all a nice evening.....and thanks again!

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