Another useful feature of styles is their ability to provide the backing instruments for a particular musical genre. In this next piece, the Square Dance from the musical “Oklahoma” by Rodgers and Hammerstein, we use a country style to provide the rhythm section for an orchestral arrangement of the song. The Edit Instrument feature is again used to modify the instrumentation in the style to provide the required orchestral instruments. Listen out for the finish of the song where we hear one of the style endings, and feel free to join in with the Yahoos from the Special Effects Unit!
The WERSI organ offers a comprehensive selection of accompaniments or Styles as they
are more commonly known. Styles are continuously repeating rhythm sequences comprising
drums, bass and a set of instruments appropriate to a particular musical genre. They
derive their harmonies from the chords held down on the lower keyboard. Over the
years styles have progressed from relatively simple one or two bar patterns to more
elaborate rhythm sequences, some specific to particular tunes, with Variations, Intros,
Endings, Breaks and Fill-
The accompaniment section of the instrument is implemented by a package known as the Open Art Arranger (OAA), a unique feature of which is the ability to edit the instruments, sequences and rhythms of the style, and even create entirely new accompaniments. In this first piece from the musical “Jesus Christ Superstar” by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice we use the Edit Instrument feature to change the instrumentation in the style so that this together with the keyboard registrations now forms the complete orchestration for the song.
WERSI ORGAN SHOWCASE
Some organists, particularly those with professional training, prefer not to use
styles on the basis that their monotonous regularity limits the individuality and
creativity of the performance. In truth however, no matter how competent a musician
might be, there is only so much that can be achieved with two hands and two feet.
A style can be very effective in providing what keyboard registrations and playing
technique cannot, as in this jazz classic by Henry Creamer and Turner Layton. Here
we use a style to provide all the instruments in a Dixieland jazz band, initially
as backing for the individual solo improvisations, then in a later section for the
complete ensemble. The Edit Sequence feature is used to modify the instrument and
drum patterns in the breaks and fill-
As well as the facility to change the instrumentation and sequences in a style, the OAA also provides a Style Record facility to create entirely new styles by enabling the drum, bass and instrument parts to be specified and recorded individually from the keyboard. This process is especially useful if a particularly unique arrangement is required, as in this final piece by Ravel where the orchestration is quite specific to the music. Here we use the Style Record feature to create four variations of a style, each one becoming more elaborate as the piece progresses, and also a suitable ending for a crash, bang, wallop finish!
© Jeff Ormerod -