How to Read Organ Sheet Music

How to Read Organ Sheet Music

Brent Phillips

How to read organ sheet music and How to read piano sheet music are similar to reading for playing. Two instruments which read and interpret music are different because they look different. There is a heading on top of each piece and an added bass clef below at organ sheet music.

We're going to explain three points; differences you read and interpret between piano and organ sheet music, between piano and organ tone, and differences between different organs in their sheet music.

Differences between Piano and Organ Sheet Music.

 Reading sheet music for piano. - You don't have to worry about preset organ settings, or the usage of vibrato and percussion, or the lower pedal. You always read sheet music horizontally on the piano, and most of the time, there aren't chord references above the notes.

Reading sheet music for organ. - Reading organ music takes on the vertical approach while making quick hand adjustments on presets to get the right sounds or timbres to match the composition

Differences between Piano Tone and an Organ Tone vs. Organ Touch.

  • Key depression - In piano playing, loudness of tone is control by how much force is used by the fingers. On organ, tone is produced by just pressing down, otherwise, factors such as registration usage, and the position of the pedal make loud and soft .
  • Tone quality -Tone quality with piano quickly diminishes with key depression. On the other hand , organ tone maintains a steady duration until key release.

Differences in Makes and Models for Organ Sheet Music.

 Included-presets for each organ model for each piece in a collection folio were popular in the '60s. The Wurlitzer's, Hammonds, and pipe organs set-ups have differed for church, theater, and home. They had headers at the top with each organ model- including every preset and a diagram above and below. Key charts had vibrato, reverb, percussion, and timbre of instruments, mainly on Wurlitzer home organs. 

 Sheet music for the organ was written widely during the twenties when acting in silent films had no sound. The organ was used in movie theaters while the movie was running, and theater organs had the most presets. Music stores sold sheet music with headers mainly during the '30s to the late seventies. Reading organ sheet music kept the organist scanning constantly in each part to get a different sound, so reading organ music is more than reading piano music.






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