B i o g r a p h y
Electone 3 manual electronic organ 1973.
I am an Electone single manual electric organ. I am quite happy here on display in the Pall Mall Music store in Chorley. Unknown to me, a 14 year old greasy haired over excited would be Keith Emerson, was about to walk in with his slightly confused Dad. The 14 year old has convinced his Dad to part with some, quite possibly most, of his hard earned British Leyland income on me.
I do not remember the journey from the shop to my new home; I have to assume I travelled in the Vauxhall Viva.
The living room had the feint air of cat and thanks to next door it was visited regularly by lots of cockroaches. I was set up in front of the T.V. It would seem my greasy unwashed owner could not do anything unless he was watching the television at the same time. I arrived around just after the Finlandia colour television.
There was a front room. The Parlor. It was the living room for a while apparently. That was when his Mum was alive.
His attitude was not what I expected, although he spent some time trying to play through the free music book supplied with me as part of the deal, he was intent on becoming the next Emerson as soon as possible.
It may be useful at this point to mention I am not what you would consider the ideal Emerson keyboard. Emerson used Hammonds, way out of my owners league. But try he did. First writing a suite of pieces, he bypassed the years of technical and practical study, the practice the relentless touring, he ignored this process completely, my owner was a dreamer, very ambitious. He went straight for the rock classical crossover. Something about the elements, Earth Wind and Fire, not very original I thought.
He then roped a school friend into his plans. The friend had drum kit, and a garage. The new Carl Palmer agrees to rehearse this new masterwork. This was not the most popular idea with the composers Dad who was convinced to run my grubby owner, and me, to his friend’s house in the Vauxhall Viva. Although only in the next town, his Dad made clear what the journey was, to put it in his Dads words ‘ bloody hell “ “ what are you going there for, bloody hell” (His Dad did not approve of bad language with the exception of “bloody hell” and “bugger me”)
After a bizarre session where no one understood any of my owner’s ideas, the friends Dad was recruited to run us home.
My new owner was thrilled by the prospect of writing new music but soon became frustrated by my limitations. I did not sound anything like Emerson’s Hammonds, I have only limited sounds and my keyboard, at three octaves is very restricting to all but the beginner. My new owner did not consider himself a beginner, he had joined the world of music, and that, for now, was enough.