German Jubilate Harmonium (Designed for Solo Performers)
German Jubilate Harmonium Reeds are brass reeds used in Indian harmoniums that were manufactured in Germany between 1911 and the early 1960s. The reeds were originally manufactured for American style suction reed organs being manufactured in Germany on machinery that was bought second hand in Chicago in the United States and imported to Germany by Karl Mannborg son of Theodor Mannborg. Mannborg owned the factory in Pegau, Germany supplying organ parts for American style suction reed organs. Germany (and later in England) was the only country in Europe that was manufacturing American style suction reed organs while the rest of the reed organ industry in Europe was making pressure reed Harmoniums.
In the 1930s and 1940s the demand in Europe for reed organs and harmoniums significantly declined and the factory started exporting the reeds to India where Indian style hand-pumped harmoniums, works on an air pressure system, had become very popular creating the demand and a market for the German harmonium reeds.
In the early 1960s the factory making the German organ reeds used in the Indian sub-continent for harmoniums, having changed hands several times and now situated in post World War II East Germany (GDR), was taken over by the communist government and the reed making machinery was scrapped. This marked the end of German reed production.
Today German reeds are highly prized and sought after by players of Indian harmoniums around the globe.
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Availability of German Jubilate Harmonium Instrument :
Basically, a harmonium is used as a lead instrument in many form of music such as Hindustani Music, Sufi Music, Kawali Music, Indian origin devotional (Bhajans) & desi songs. My father is popular among the students for training Carnatic Music on Vocals, Veena, Bansuri, Harmonium. He is also a Music Therapist and an Ayurvedic Doctor. He also did business in trading the musical instruments such as Bansuri (Indian Origin of Flute) and Harmonium. In 1975, he purchased German made reeds installed in Indian origin Harmonium from a Veterinary Doctor at 250 Indian Rupees. The Veterinary Doctor purchased from the authorised seller at 100 Indian Rupees. Because of its unique sound, he kept it for his personal use, for training his students and for performing at reputed entertainment programs. But for the last 20 years, the harmonium is not being used at all. Please note that Indian Musicians really care for their respective musical instruments. That is why I am able to complete recording the samples of this harmonium.
Audio Production :
For Sound Recording, I have used Shure SM7B and Audix OM2 moving coil microphones. Though it is an indoor recording setup, I took off the windshield of Shure SM7B and also took off the grill of Audix OM2. The harmonium has a leather flap over the key release holes to prevent from dust particles. The leather flap dampens the direct sound coming from the key release holes. With the leather flap, the harmonium sound very soft ( p ). But without the leather flap, the harmonium sounds very loud ( f ) because of the direct sound from the key release holes. I have used Apollo Twin MKII Duo manufactured by Universal Audio. The whole audio production is completed using Logic Pro X Digital Audio Workstation. After editing the audio files of Harmonium Samples, I checked its pitch by taking reference of one of the built-in instrument packages and I found that the Harmonium Samples sounds 25 cents higher than built-in instrument library. So, I pitched down the harmonium samples by 25 cents, completed the audio signal processing by taking advantage of emulated plugins such as Fairchild 670, LA2A, FET1176, Pultec Pro…etc. and exported the audio files.
About the Author :
The Author, Girish Patro, is a well known Trainer in Music Production and Sound Engineering.He has trained more than 170 budding sound engineers, music performers, music educators at Sound Engineering Academy (Trivandrum), who are currently working at the Music Industry in India and abroad.
He also worked as a Sound Engineer Assistant at Omgrown Music Studio (Mumbai) who provide Music Production services to Ad Agencies and Film Production Companies.His work and workflow of each assigned task are appreciated by Music Performers and Record Producers.
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