My current live rig with Janiva Magness, when there isn't backline, consists of:


Hammond XK3

Casio Privia PX-330

Yamaha Motif ES rack



Hammond Leslie 2101

Hammond Leslie 2121


Neo Instruments Ventilator

Hammond EXP-100f expression pedal

M-Audio SP2 sustain pedal

On-Stage Double-Tier Z-Stand


I run the 11pin output of the XK3 to the input of the Leslie 2101 via a custom adapter that also connects to the Ventilator. This allows me to switch both the 2101 and the Ventilator from the XK3. I run the output of the Ventilator to a direct box and then one channel of the 2121.

So in essence I have a real Leslie (the horn of the 2101) and a simulated Leslie effect (the Ventilator) and that makes it much easier on the sound crew. I have them take a direct off the output of the Ventilator. Since there are no mics on the Leslie, feedback through monitors isn't an issue and I don't have to worry whether the sound guy is mixing the top and "bottom" rotors of the Leslie 21 system correctly.


The Privia PX-330 is MIDI'd to the Motif ES rack. The Motif is then fed into another direct box and then to a channel of the 2121. I use the Motif for piano and electric piano sounds. I love the acoustic piano sound of the PX-330, but the electric pianos are not as good as the Yamaha. It is just easier to use the Motif for everything, rather than having yet another audio output to contend with. That said, I've done a few gigs with Janiva where space was at a premium, and I only needed piano. In those cases, I just use the Privia. The acoustic piano sound is really good and very enjoyable to play.



For organissimo or other gigs where I kick bass, my live rig consists of:

Hammond XK3 with the XK Traditional System cabinet & pedals

Yamaha Motif ES rack

Moog Voyager


Leslie 3300

Yorkville NX55p

Yorkville LS700p subwoofer



I really love the XK system. I played a 1958 Hammond B3 with a 122 on the road for almost 10 years, hauling it to several gigs a week. In late 2006, I had to have surgery on my lower back to repair a herniated disc. I decided to pursue an alternative to the mighty B3. I thought about going with a chop, but they are still extremely heavy and 99.9% of them don't have any way to use the bass pedals.

I switched over to the XK system in the summer of 2006 and never looked back. In fact, one of my gigs with the rig is on YouTube, an appearance at the Muskegon Summer Festival. I was still using my Leslie 122 at this point. I picked up the Leslie 3300 in early 2008 and it's become my favorite Leslie. It has so much headroom and power, yet with the right preamp tube can still deliver that classic Leslie tone. You can read my full review over on the organissimo site.


I run the 3300's sub output to the Yorkville LS700p subwoofer. This provides the last bit of low bass that the 3300's small cabinet just can't emit. If you kick bass with a 3300, I highly suggest you get a sub.


The Motif ES rack runs through the Yorkville NX55p powered speaker. I like Yorkville powered speakers more than the ones offered by Mackie or JBL. They have a clearer, more natural sound.


I bought the Moog Voyager in the spring of 2008 as well, to use on organissimo's Groovadelphia CD. It quickly became a favorite part of my live rig. It's such an expressive instrument. You can hear it in action on our live CD as well, Alive & Kickin' and the companion DVD. The Moog runs into the Yorkville NX550p.


When I played with Root Doctor, the rig was pretty much the same as with organissimo, just sans the bass pedals.


I'm currently planning a new live rig for an experimental jazz project I've been involved with. We have a festival gig coming up and the last time we played live I used basically the organissimo rig, augmented with a couple more synths. This time around, I think I'll strip down the organ to it's basics (XK3, pedals, Leslie) and focus more on some of the synths I have at home.


More to come!


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