Waiting on the DGX…

Did I ever tell you about my old keyboards? No, of course I didn't. I haven't talked much about keyboards at all in this blog, mainly because I rarely play them these days. Well, that's been in the process of changing.

My first keyboard was a cheesy little plastic Bontempi electric organ. I don't know where they got it from, but they gave it to us around the time they gave us the drums and guitar that we barely used. I am sad to report that I was not a wunderkind virtuoso musician as a child. I think we may have even drawn on the Bontempi keys with crayon. And no, I couldn't possibly tell you what model it was unless you showed me a photograph, which I'm sure my google-fu is not up to finding just now. I'm just about to give it a try in finding the first keyboard I ever bought and practiced on myself.

Nope, can't find it. It was an old Yamaha PSR model, but I can't work out which one. Really old, all black with green rectangular buttons, somewhere between a 75 and a 210 from what I can see, but none of those seem right. It's been so long since I had it, I just can't remember anymore. It had (IIRC) 61 ever-so-slightly touch sensitive keys, 8 note polyphony and about a dozen sounds, which you were able to combine two at a time to get weirder sounds. It had a great piano sound, (which I used extensively, and even mimicked with the synth years later) and a number of other rather dodgier sounds, including brass, strings, harpsichord and organ. It was the keyboard I bought so I could practice for my keyboard class in high school, and I even used it for the first couple of years in the band back in the mid 90s.

I finally set it aside after Derrick bought Dori's Kawai K-1 synth off of her, which we used extensively through 1997 and the beginning of 1998. I composed some really fun music on that semi-weighted, touch sensitive 61-key darling, until my apartment was broken into and both keyboards (plus my Alesis SR-16 drum machine) were stolen.

I eventually decided to buy a new keyboard so I could get back to work, and purchased a Technics KN650, which had some balls for a cheeseball keyboard, so I figured I'd be okay for a while. Sadly, the magic was never there, and I've only very recently started getting any use out of it at long last.

Which brings me up to the present, with the Yamaha DGX-620 keyboard I'm anxiously awaiting the delivery of, as a sort of early Christmas present. It's the last piece of musical gear I'm going to buy for quite a while, so it has to be good. 88 'graded hammer action' keys, 32-note polyphony, 500 sounds to play with, and it even has its own stand; not that I really wanted one, but it's welcome. Turns out it does indeed have about 150 accompaniment styles, which I could do without, but I'm used to it. It has a bit of song sequencing technology, but I really don't need it for that. Still, not unwelcome. And it has some reverbs, choruses and some EQ, which is quite welcome, as it frees up my effects units.

All in all, a pretty drool-worthy little addition to my studio. The first time I'll have ever bought for myself a keyboard I wouldn't be ashamed to take on stage with me.

Now if only it would hurry up and get here, before they figure out a way to get even more shipping cost out of me. It's outrageous what I'm having to pay to get it here.

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