Hammonds have been popular in the music industry since the 1940s when they were first used by jazz and blues musicians. Since then, their popularity has only grown and today they are used in a wide range of genres, from rock to progressive rock.
Hammonds are a type of electric organ that produces sound by using rotating tone wheels. The most iconic Hammond sound is exhaling through the Leslie Speaker, which is a rotating speaker cabinet that creates a unique vibrato effect. This distinctive sound has been used by many bands over the years, from Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd.
The drawbars of a hammond can be manipulated to create a range of tones and textures, giving the Hammond organ its unique and recognizable sound. Hammond drawbars are an essential component of the legendary Hammond organ. They are used to control the volume and tone of individual frequencies, allowing for a wide range of musical expression. The drawbars are positioned in a row at the top of the Hammond organ, and consist of rods that can be pulled out or pushed in to adjust the sound. Each rod is assigned a specific frequency.
One of the key features of these organs is their usual two 61-note (five-octave) keyboards. This allows the player to play two different notes or chords at once, creating a full and rich sound. The manuals also allow for split playing for even richer sonic results.
The Hammond organ is an essential instrument for any progressive rock band and its use can be heard in some of the most iconic albums of all time. It's no surprise that it remains one of the most important instruments in modern music today.
Arturia's take on Hammond
Leslie speakers are an iconic sound device used in many Hammond organs. The Leslie speaker was created by Don Leslie decades before, and has since become a staple of the Hammond organ sound. It is a rotating speaker system that creates a unique vibrato effect, giving the instrument its signature sound. Leslie speakers have been used by some of the most famous musicians in history, including Jimmy Smith and Stevie Wonder. With its distinct sound and timeless appeal, the Leslie speaker is sure to remain an integral part of Hammond organs for years to come.
Many hammond digital emulations are available today.