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 Post subject: hawkwind gear during the years
PostPosted: Fri Aug 29, 2008 10:45 pm 
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hi there is there a place on the net where I can find informations about the keyboards using on records and on stage from the 1974 until the mid 90's

I started and expended my question after watching closely the 1990 concert on dvd, where I could see a memory source (the same as the Solstice video) a jupiter 8 and another one but I couldn't see what it was


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2008 5:08 am 
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Location: USA
The information is out there but it is tedious to find and scattered. The best source (besides videos) is usually in interviews, especially if interviewed by a music (instrument) oriented mag/interviewer.

Look on Starfarer and read through the interviews there.
For instance: http://www.starfarer.net/keithint.html is a good one.
Also read the books by Ian Abrahams and Carol Clerk.

Here's all I can tell you from memory, but I cannot cite the sources from memory, other than most of it was from interviews:

I know in 1974 they had begun using a mellotron (possibly Del, definitely Simon House).
Dave used an EMS Synthi around this time and up through Electric Teepee (pics of Electric Teepee sessions)
Robert sometimes used a WASP synth (there are pics of it somewhere)

Surprisingly Hawkwind also used many keyboards new to the market:
Steve Swindells used a Yamaha CS80 (the Hawklords/ 25 Years On album)
Dave used a Korg PolySix I think the year it was introduced (early/mid '80s?)
Dave used a TR626 drum module for demo sessions (Church Of Hawkwind era; possibly later Agents of Chaos solo?)
Dave used a Jupiter 8 and I think Alan used a Jupiter 4 (or 6 ... ?)
Tim Blake used moogs and i'm sure lots else which could be found on one of his sites. Later on with Hawkwind he uses a Yamaha AN1x (Out Of The Shadows DVD).

When I saw them on '89-'91 US tours, Dave played a Korg M1 (in addition to either the PolySix or Jupiter), Harvey used a Moog Rogue and a Roland (not sure which model, it could have been one of the Jupiters) and Alan played a Korg Wavestation on which he wrote Realms and a lot of other material. There is a page where he talks about his Wavestations and related Korgs (and the Jupiter model I couldn't remember above).

Harvey later played a Roland JP-8000 (Australia TV 2000). He seems to like the Rolands. Harvey's web site might also have more details for you.

Richard has used an R8 module for some of the programmed drum sounds, and later a Korg Electribe (as seen in 'Space Is Their' section on Out Of The Shadows DVD).

Lastly, there was a guitar magazine about 1-2 years ago with a Dave Brock interview and it had a great photo of him in the home studio with a rack of equipment, mostly Korg M1r and 01/RW if I remember correctly, but there was more too. These pieces obviously date from late 80's.

Maybe someone can reference links for some of the above. Good luck. If I remember more or find more links. I'll reply again.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2008 5:44 pm 
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Yes i remember that picture.The equipment can also be seen in the dvd interview with Dave on the box set Welcome To The Future.The interview starts outside and finishes in his studio and these keyboards can be seen on the film.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2008 7:25 pm 
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I am sure Dave used one of these on the Live 79 tour: -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zANtPgP8 ... re=related

MiniKorg 700S


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 21, 2008 11:28 pm 
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It's a Korg 700, not the 700S. It came up for sale in a Cornish Newspaper sometime in 1995.

Regarding the rest of the gear, I have a fairly long list of who played what - if anyone's interested I could post it up.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2008 6:38 am 
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LucidSounD wrote:Regarding the rest of the gear, I have a fairly long list of who played what - if anyone's interested I could post it up.


Please do, that would be interesting. Thanks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2008 9:29 am 
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Hawkwind used to advertise Westone guitars. I remember being influenced by that when I bought my own Westone Thunder 3 in 1981.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 24, 2008 4:25 am 
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Hey check this out: do a series of Google searches and you will find lots of info (+/- accuracy):

Hawkwind Roland
Hawkwind Korg
Hawkwind Moog
Hawkwind EMS
Hawkwind Mellotron

Also out of curiosity I typed in Hawkwind Rockfield and found there's a book on the subject with an entire chapter apparently to be dedicated to Hawkwind!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 27, 2008 9:17 pm 
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As requested...

Having spent more time than is healthy researching this particular subject myself, this, I believe, is a reasonably definitive (but no doubt incomplete) list of synths and keyboards used by the band, in roughly chronological order:

1. EMS VCS3 with pitch to voltage converter - Del Dettmar

2. EMS Synthi AKS - Dave and Nik both got one of these in 1973. Nik's was usually used by Simon House on stage. After he left the band, Nik took his to Inner City Unit where it was played by Fred Reeves. During one particular gig, Reeves is alleged to have thrown it at Nik, and it sustained some damage when it hit the stage. Sold shortly after to Norman Fay then re-sold on the VEMIA site a few years ago, restored to full working order, and still with its ICU paint job.

Dave has kept his and used it on many, many recordings, retiring it from stage use in 1981 after the case got broken.

Tim Blake used 2 heavily modified EMS Synthi's, which he had from his Crystal Machine days - one of them is a very early serial number 00007. These were sold in 2004. :lol:

Del also had, and still has, a VCS3 and a number of Synthi A's.

3. Mellotron 400. Simon House played one of these on stage and on records from 1974 to 1976, usually with the strings or choir tapes (D-Rider, Psychedelic Warlords, Paradox, Golden Void, Chronoglide Skyway etc. Reported as being 'unreliable'. He replaced it with:

4. Logan String Melody. As heard on Robot on PXR5. Sold via Hawkfan.

5. Korg 700. Heard on many, many recordings and on stage from 1974 to 1984, used by Simon House, Steve Swindells and Dave Brock. This one came up for sale in a Cornish newspaper in 1995.

6. Moog Minimoog. In the mid 1970's, major studios sometimes had a resident Minimoog, and Simon House took advantage of this on Astounding Sounds and Warrior.

Tim Blake also had his own Minimoog, a very early one which he bought from Manfred Mann. :lol:

7. RMI Electro-Piano. Simon House, 1974 – 1978 (especially on Quark album).

8. Audio Generator. Custom built, used on stage by Dave and Bob (1976-1978).

9. Yamaha CS-80. Steve Swindells, Hawklords.

10. Roland System 100. Tim Blake 1979/80 (New Jerusalem bass sequence)

11. Korg Polyphonic Ensemble. Tim Blake.

12. Korg Lamda. Tim Blake and later, Dave Brock (“syrupy string sounds”).

13. Korg MS-20 and SQ-10 sequencer. Dave Brock 1980 – 2008. :lol:

14. Roland SH-09. Dave Brock 1981 (Church of Hawkwind)

15. Roland Jupiter 4. Harvey Bainbridge 1981/2.

16. Roland Jupiter 8. Dave and Harvey both used JP8’s big time, 1982 onwards.

17. Korg Polysix. Dave, 1982 to present.

18. Roland Guitar Synth (not sure which model). Huw Lloyd-Langton (Dragons & Fables).

18. Roland JX-3P with PG-200 programmer. Dave, late 1980's to present.

19. Casio CZ-1000 and CZ-101. Dave and Harvey, mid 1980's to about 1992.

20. Casio FZ-10M rack mount samplers. Dave and Harvey, mid 1980's to about 1998. Think Harvey also had a Roland sampler.

21. Korg M1, M1R and M1REX. Dave and Harvey, 1989 onwards.

22. Roland GR-50 Guitar Synth. Dave, 1990 onwards, using GK-2A pickups fitted to his guitars (especially on Electric Teepee)

23. Roland Juno 60. Alan Davey mid 1980's to about 1992. Swapped for:

24. Roland Jupiter 6. Alan, 1992 to 1997. Used to belong to Fields of the Nephilim, and given a custom dayglo paint job by Alan Arthurs. :lol:

25. Korg Wavestation EX, Wavestation AD and Wavestation SR. Alan, 1992 onwards.

26. Kawai K4. Alan, 1991 – 1997 (Blue Shift etc). :lol:

27. Korg 01R/W. Dave, early 1990’s onwards.

28. EMU Proteus series. Dave, mid 1990’s onwards.

29. Roland SH-101. Richard Chadwick.

30. Roland JD-800. Richard Chadwick.


There are of course a few gaps - for example, does anybody know what Paul Hayles and Keith Hale played?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 27, 2008 9:28 pm 
Nice work LucidSounD, Synth porn at it's best. There's a photo of one of Dave's well worn VCS3s on Matrix synth which is worth a look.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 27, 2008 11:19 pm 
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Location: Walking in the sunshine in the middle of the night
Thanks for that, Lucidsound. It's much appreciated.

I never knew Tim Blake's MiniMoog had belonged to Manfred Mann. Do you happen to know if this was the one he used on the early Earthband albums, particularly Solar Fire?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 27, 2008 11:34 pm 
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It's almost certainly the one he played on the first 2 Earthband albums, and possibly up until Solar Fire. I'm told he sold it to Tim in 1974. It's a very early R.A. Moog Mini, and the tuning stability of these is questionable at best. I gather Manfred had several of them, this one being his first, but being a 'performer' he more than likely bought the newer more stable models as they came out. Tim had Graham Wood upgrade it to the later version oscillator card, with multi-turn presets for the tuning.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Sep 27, 2008 11:56 pm 
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Thanks. Back in the 70s I had no chance of owning a synth of any kind, much less a MiniMoog, and albums like Solar Fire were especially important to me for the synth sounds I wanted to be able to play myself.

The thought of the same synth turning up on different albums by different artists amuses me. Not just `nice Mini playing' but `hey, it's that same Mini again.'

I've never bought a synth with a history, though - unless my MS20 had one. I never found out who it had belonged to before. I've passed on buying a couple of historical items over the last couple of years, and really I think I'd rather have my new Moog than Steve Hillage's old Mini, for example.

The really unique ones are a different matter, and one of the instruments I would have appreciated buying if I could was Tim's double EMS synth - but of course `someone' bought that before I even knew it was for sale. :lol:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2008 8:18 pm 
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On owning instruments from famous players, I used to have an ARP2600 that previously belonged to Steve Winwood - though you'd have to say it could have been any ARP2600.

The double EMS - well I don't think it ever was 'for sale'. More a case that Tim probably got fed up of the constant badgering and finally relented.

You've got to remember the first ever gig I went to was to see Hawkwind at Wolverhampton Civic Hall in November 1979. Of course, you couldn't get near Dave's side of the stage, so I ended up in front of Huw and this bloke from Gong I'd never heard of called Tim Blake. And he had a pretty impressive keyboard rig, especially the Crystal Machine, with it's blue fluorescent lighting and LED's that ran in sequences across the top. And he played New Jerusalem, and I thought "that's it, that's it exactly". And I spent the next 20 years looking in awe at grainy photos of it and wondering what happened to it. And now I know. :wink:


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 28, 2008 8:43 pm 
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It's nice to know it's in good hands and appreciated, anyway.

I'm inclined to think the double EMS is what an EMS synth ultimately should be, in fact. A standard EMS configuration is very nice, but only so far.

I've tried suggesting a software double along the lines of the Crystal Machine to Arturia and also Ludwig Rehberg, who already has his virtual synthi. But so far no luck. I'm told the best hardware option looks like an Analogue Systems modular. That makes sense, but I haven't tried one.

So the Crystal Machine remains unique as far as I know. I do know where there's another double EMS (or was, anyway), but without the refinements that made Tim's synth so special.


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