In the first training session with organists new to Rodgers Organs, I rarely go beyond just playing the organ as it presents itself.  Coming from other instruments, it seems the best approach to get them familiar with the stops and controls they are used to and saving the use of Voice Palette and MIDI to go over at a later stage. However,  this week the clear way that the display window on this organ shows what the stops are when using the Voice Palette and MIDI voices made it easy for me to set pistons using MIDI stops and for the organists to see what I was doing, what the controls do and how useful this is to them.

I think that this may be due to the fact that the organ has left the concept of MIDI merely being a way to add non-organ sounds behind with a much newer concept that makes MIDI more valuable to the organist.

First, the individual stops on the organ have alternate stops behind each of them, giving you choices that are alternate stops, much as if the organ is supplied with extra ranks of pipes that can be moved into place on the chest and played in place of the stop that appears on the stop tab. [for those who are fans of the work of E.Power Biggs, the famous organ in Boston that he recorded on was supplied with an additional reed stop - to play it the entire rank of pipes on the chest were removed and stored and these other pipes put in their place and tuned, hardly something that could be done during a concert or during an intermission] 

Second, and this is the interesting part, while the engraved name stops have alternates behind them, each division has two MIDI stops on the stop rail in line with the normal stops. These stops can be anything for the list of Pipe Stops in the memory and can be played at any pitch.

You are able ti adjust the volume level of the stops as well.

The sound person at the church was impressed with the low pitches of the organ, hearing the 32' reed beating away and he was even more impressed to hear it at 64' and 128' pitch.  Under full organ both of these really enhanced the sound of the organ.  

This also opens these organs to playing early music which at times call for 32' stops on the manuals.

Here is a link to organs that listed 32' stops on their manual divisions:


© noel jones 2013 • Roland Group & Rodgers Instruments are trademarks and used with permission.