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  • Shoes

    Does anyone know where I can get used organ shoes from?

  • #2
    I'm sure they are extremely rare. If you know of a shoemaker shop (also becoming very rare) you could have an extra heel added to a pair of regular dress shoes. Had it done about 16 years ago when I was playing in a nearby church. Keep them stored for now, but I'm working with 4 restorations that have 32 note pedalboards so I'm hoping to get back to a more professional level of pedaling soon. You could check craigslist and Ebay under the name Organmasters. Some may be selling at estate sales and be remarketed by pickers?

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    • #3
      Why are you looking to buy used organ shoes? In general, organists buy one pair of organ shoes and wear them until they are good and dead (and sometimes beyond dead). Organ shoes can be had on order from Organmaster via the company's website, another option is the Capezio 440 oxford. A decent pair of organ shoes shouldn't run you much more than $60. If you don't care for any of the full-on organ shoe options, it is also fairly common for men to play in loafers, although, I assume they keep those loafers separate from their regular shoes.

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      • #4
        Another option is dance shoes. Look around your locale for dance supply stores. They may even have clearance sales at certain times of the year.

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        • #5
          I use the organmaster shoe... they work good...
          Allen MDC Classic 42
          Neronde Flo Tone Electric Accordion

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          • #6
            just. There is absolutely no margin for error, and performances can get hairy as soon as the littlest nerves pop up (though things can go wrong in that piece with any shoes on).
            While waiting for my new shoes to arrive, I was forced to play in socks--specifically, a big piece by Franck in the performance class at my school--and it was definitely a lesson in being adaptable. No matter what kind of shoes or what kind of pedalboard or what kind of feet or what kind of music, the notes are there, and only need the most basic of manipulation (pressing) to make them sound. With a good sense of what's going on down there, you could play in tennis shoes, and sound absolutely fine. What the feet are doing is significantly less important that what the pedals are doing.
            As of 7/16/2013, no longer active on forum.
            Practice hard, practice well.

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            • #7
              Like you, doucaine, I wear Capezios for my organ shoes (in my case, it's the 445s). Capezios were recommended to me by a very well respected and prominent organist in Cleveland. I recall though that fresh out of the box, the soles were a bit too slick, so either playing them in or finding some way to scuff up the soles a bit will be really useful to anyone who buys such shoes.

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              • #8
                The slick soles actually can be useful in circumstances. It's comforting knowing that if you need to slide around a lot, you can, and for some music with lots of repeated toes, a bit of slide is a must (Vierne 6 last movement comes to mind, where both repeated toes and slides are needed to make things legato without getting your feet tangled). I still have the soles as slick as when I bought them, but this does compromise security (not accuracy) on notes, and there is always the chance that you'll slide off and make a fun noise. It really is a matter of preference.
                As of 7/16/2013, no longer active on forum.
                Practice hard, practice well.

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                • #9
                  Click image for larger version

Name:	CameronCarpenterOrganShoes.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	113.8 KB
ID:	587665What Cameron Carpenter is wearing these days. A picture from his twitter feed.
                  -Admin

                  Allen 965
                  Zuma Group Midi Keyboard Encoder
                  Zuma Group DM Midi Stop Controller
                  Hauptwerk 4.2

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Austin766 View Post
                    I recall though that fresh out of the box, the soles were a bit too slick, so either playing them in or finding some way to scuff up the soles a bit will be really useful to anyone who buys such shoes.
                    With my Organmasters, I use either sandpaper and sand lightly to raise the nap on the leather soles, or carpet. I wonder if some sort of sandpaper or brillo pad/steel wool (untreated) would work on your Capezios?

                    I also prefer smooth soles as opposed to the loose leather soles of Organmasters. That way I can slide better on the pedals. To smooth the soles of Organmasters when you first purchase them, either practice a lot before you need them in performance, or walk on clean wood or stone floors a lot. That will help smooth them out.

                    Michael
                    Originally posted by Admin View Post
                    [ATTACH=CONFIG]9376[/ATTACH]What Cameron Carpenter is wearing these days. A picture from his twitter feed.
                    I suppose that would match the mental age! Seriously, sometime I would like to attend one of his master classes or performances. He provides some interesting thoughts to consider.
                    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
                    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
                    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
                    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos

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                    • #11
                      I am 6'5" so naturally I have to raise up the bench pretty high. I actually sit with it a little higher than I should, so I wear Capezio's Men's Latin Oxfords. They have an extended heal which is good for sitting on a high bench. They are also extremely flexible throughout which is nice.

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                      • #12
                        I bought a pair of organmasters a few months ago. They are excellent and are incredibly light. I wish I had bought them years ago. They make pedalling a lot more comfortable. Highly recommended.

                        Best wishes,
                        Fettler

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                        • #13
                          I don't have shoes yet, but I also don't have the money to purchase them. Is there a cheaper way to acquire them, or some sort of solution? I've heard that purchasing tap shoes and removing the taps can be a bit less expensive than the organmaster shoes.
                          Fishers, IN

                          At School Church: Wicks III/40
                          At Church Where I Am Director: Hammond BV with Leslie 122
                          Summer Practice Organ: Rodgers III/47

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                          • #14
                            When I reformed my pedaling, and decided to use the technique that I use now, I spent a few weeks working exclusively without shoes (except when performing). This was important, because it strengthened my feet, and built up the muscle in places that don't usually get a lot of work. As a result, my feet are stronger and more solid, and my pedaling with shoes on is more comfortable.
                            If you don't currently have shoes, it isn't the end of the world. Use socks (with good technique), and your feet will be better off when you do come about buying shoes. If your feet are strong, you don't need to keep your ankle stiff for control, and if your ankle is flexible, you can play anything.
                            Tap shoes will work, but make sure the soles are suitable and not too tacky. A little tackiness is alright, and will make you more accurate in the short run, but if you are going to play a lot of tough pieces, you might as well use slick soles and learn how to control them from the start. Admittedly, a lot of really good organists disagree with me on this; it's really a matter of preference.
                            As of 7/16/2013, no longer active on forum.
                            Practice hard, practice well.

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                            • #15
                              My preference is the Capezio 445. It has a slick leather heel and sole, which I like. My organ prof told me to request a pair for Christmas during college freshman fall quarter. It took a while to get used to the control required, but it was worth it. I still use Johnson's paste wax on them (actually my third pair) to maintain their slickness. It really annoys me to play an organ that has gunk accumulated on the pedals.

                              I have played in sock feet in a pinch, but have also picked up some splinters that way. At this point, it would require a really special occasion to play in sock feet.

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