Wersi Alpha DX 300 organ/synthesizer/delay/drums/sequencer/special effects keyboard "After all confusion the digital conclusion" full page colour advertisement from page 57 in the February 1984 issue of Keyboard.
I blogged a bit about the Wersi Bassie back in 2010, but something happened that recently raised my curiosity about the company again.
You see, holidays are approaching, and no matter how much of a Grinch I become during this anxiety-inducing season, very few things make me smile more than hearing some classic pop organ riff when out and about. Every so often during the holidays you will catch a song or two in stores or flipping randomly through the radio. Stuff like Klaus Wunderlich. Always makes me giggle a little.
And exactly that happened recently. And after hearing the song, I started surfing around Klaus' Wikipedia page. It got me thinking about Wersi again, and so I started digging through old Keyboard mags for their organ ads, and this one got my attention.
Looking back, there wasn't much Alpha DX 300 info for interested Keyboard readers. The ad itself appeared only three or four times during the first half of 1984 and reads a bit like a translation straight from Germany with awesomely awkward sentences like:
"400 miles of written software and many patents finally led to an important breakthrough in the field of music".
"It's just the sound you like... having a quality that seems almost impossible."Even the "Digital conclusion" theme is a little uncomfortable to process. Let's face it, there's a lot of fluff going on in this ad, but there isn't a lot of technical information Keyboard readers would find useful - things like sequencer memory or number of voices.
You would think the Spec Sheet promo for the DX 300 that appeared in June 1984 would be a little bit more forthcoming about the tech side of things, but I'm afraid not:
"Wersi Keyboard. The Wersi Alpha DX 300 features two 44-note, F-to-F keyboards and digital sound generating circuitry. The unit as organ, synthesizer, drum machine, and sequencer capability. A computer interface is built in for connecting it to a personal computer. Weight is 55 lbs, including built-in speakers and amplifiers. Wersi, Box 5318, Lancaster, PA 17601."Boo!
Then again, I'm going to assume that maybe Keyboard wasn't the first place organ players really looked for a lot of their tech info. Maybe there was a magazine called "Organ", which hopefully didn't get mixed up in the magazine rack with some medical journal of the same name. Or even worse, a hip 80's p0rn mag. The purpose of ads in peripheral markets aren't to hard-sell a product, but to get people interested just enough that they walk into their local organ store the next time they are passing by.
So, I'm not knocking Wersi. The company was definitely doing the right things to promote this beast. According to the ad, there was a brochure and sound sheet available for the Alpha DX 300. And thanks in no small part to Chrome's Web page translation abilities, I was also able to find MP3s for a Wersi Alpha DX 300 "The Magic of a Digital-Organ - Alpha DX 300 in concert" record from the early 80s in this RKCA (Recreational Keyboard Club Antwerp) forum, posted by one of the administrators, Roppeke.
But if you want something to blare on your sound system today, I recommend this apparent Klaus Wunderlich promo for Wersi from the early 70s that I found on YouTube this morning. No DX 300, but who gives a crap when you can dance alone in your living room while hanging wet laundry.
*That* is what cheers me up on a miserable day like today. :)