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Jon Lord Music Supplement

Jon Lord's 'Before I Forget' | Jon Lord

A fully detailed transcription of ‘Before I Forget', (including instructions for 4-track home recording), for solo keyboard with band, group or orchestra.

An Electro-Music Transcription by Mike Beecher

This is the title track of Jon Lord's new album (available on EMI SHSP 4123 and is scored for piano solo and 'electronic orchestra'. It is a direct transcription of the music and highlights Jon Lord's acoustic grand piano playing for a solo performance that could be accompanied by orchestra (real or electronic), or by bass guitar, rhythm guitar, keyboards and drums.

The instruments mentioned in the electronic orchestra staves are the nearest equivalent traditional instruments synthesised by Jon in his recorded version for the LP. These should allow you to set up a suitable sound on your own synthesiser(s) if you wish to multitrack the orchestra yourself.

A possible approach for the home electro-musician using the Fostex 250 or Tascam 144/244 Portastudios might be:

Track 1 - Drums (record a percussive 'guide' track for the whole piece, then only fade in when required in the first mix of tracks 1, 2 and 3 to track 4).
Track 2 - Bass notes (tails down on bass stave of orchestra).
Track 3 — Cello.
Track 4 - A mix of tracks 1, 2 and 3 plus input 4 with Horn.
Track 1 — Flute echoes and 2 part lines.
Track 2 - Voices (3 note chords mostly). Can be done on Vocoder.
Track 3 — Cello.

On final mixdown, I like to spread piano and voices with chorus send/return (Aux panned opposite to straight signal) and used E&MM Panolo on the flute (with echoes from the E&MM Digital Delay). The piano in particular benefits from added reverb, otherwise put it just a little on everything in the final mix. Bass and drums were centre stereo, with cello and hom slightly off centre left and right respectively. All the guitar chords are shown, although Jon does not use them as a rhythm accompaniment. I suggest an open finger style up to section D, followed by a steady strumming with the drums until the Coda.

The echo repeats of the flute have not been specifically notated. It is better that you listen to Jon's record yourself and add your own timing and effects.

The first bar of Section D indicates between the orchestra staves what the drummer should be doing, and simply gives you the style for playing (or programming).

Needless to say, the piano notes are not every time precisely what Jon plays, but are intended to give the feel and style of his music. Once you've studied the score closely with the LP recording, you'll begin to get an insight to Jon Lord's experience of integrating modern and classical music. Finally, don't be afraid to experiment with different sound textures for the parts and let us know how you get on. Happy Synthesising!

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Korg Polysix

Electronics & Music Maker - Copyright: Music Maker Publications (UK), Future Publishing.


Electronics & Music Maker - Aug 1982


Jon Lord


Keyboard Player

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Feature by Mike Beecher

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