MoogArchives.com Forum Index MoogArchives.com
Vintage Moog Information Exchange
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

A petty but intriguing question about the Theremin

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    MoogArchives.com Forum Index -> Moog Discussion Board
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
none
Guest





PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2004 12:50 am    Post subject: A petty but intriguing question about the Theremin Reply with quote

Was Robert Moog the actual inventor of the first synths? I was wondering earler today where the development of techno music could be pinpointed Very Happy so I have a very insignificant, petty, and annoying question to ask Wink ... Does the invention of the Theremin and other synths connect with the development of techno and industrial music; I'm sure there's a correlation but I'm wondering if the Theremin was used in the first techno music (you can see what my passions are).... and what people used first the synths in the making of techno? I'm thinking that you should post on your site the importance in that area of music--- This site could turn its face to modern music and become a revolution of the times- just think! Very Happy
Back to top
THM



Joined: 05 Jun 2004
Posts: 70
Location: Belgium (Europe)

PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2004 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sir Robert Arthur MOOG was probably not the very first inventor of synthesizer technology (there were other companies too who experimented with electronic sounds), but he surely was the inventor of most components of the synthesizers like we know nowadays.

He started experimenting with basic electronics to create sounds, and the more he experimented, the more features he invented, and a very big part of synth component patents are owned by MOOG.
(list: see www.till.com/articles/moog/patents.html )

The first synthesizers were rather modular types, but with the legendary Minimoog the first "portable" synth was born. First Minimoog models (especially the "A") were nothing more than a few basic MOOG modular components in one smaller wooden case, but when the "model D" was finally released the first portable synthesizer was born - portable in the sense of that it was literally "portable" (and not too big or too heavy to move) and that you didn't need patch cables anymore to make sounds.

The rest is synth history...


Last edited by THM on Thu Jun 10, 2004 9:25 am; edited 1 time in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
THM



Joined: 05 Jun 2004
Posts: 70
Location: Belgium (Europe)

PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2004 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

btw: if this was actually not really an answer to your question, can you please rephrase your question - thanks
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Dana Countryman
Guest





PostPosted: Wed Jun 30, 2004 4:56 pm    Post subject: Inventor of synth Reply with quote

Hi --

I think it's fairly safe to say that Mr. Moog was at least ONE of the inventors of the MODULAR synthesizer. Donald Buchla was right in there, too, but with some different approaches. There certainly were lots of others before them, who experimented with analog synthesis in cruder forms.

I own an Ondioline, made by Georges Jenny in France - circa 1952. It has many characteristics of modern analog synths: wave shaping, and versative filters (although limited.) Best of all, a touch-sensitive keyboard with MANUAL vibrato capabilities -- similar to how a guitarist does finger vibrato. Very expressive. And definitely a predecessor of the more modern synth.

- Dana Countryman
http://www.danacountryman.com
Back to top
Guest






PostPosted: Wed Aug 11, 2004 8:42 am    Post subject: Re: Inventor of synth Reply with quote

Dana Countryman wrote:
I own an Ondioline, made by Georges Jenny in France - circa 1952. It has many characteristics of modern analog synths: wave shaping, and versative filters (although limited.) Best of all, a touch-sensitive keyboard with MANUAL vibrato capabilities -- similar to how a guitarist does finger vibrato. Very expressive. And definitely a predecessor of the more modern synth.


French are acquainted with these "luxury" features
since the invention of the Ondes Martenot ("Martenot waves")
http://www.obsolete.com/120_years/machines/martenot/
http://www.chez.com/cslevine/ondes/

--S tR
Back to top
Corbeau
Guest





PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2004 10:07 am    Post subject: To None Reply with quote

You could have phrased that question better None, but I see what you're getting at. I'll just give you a little history to 'pinpoint' the development of techno...

The genesis of electronic music is the development of the valve (or vacuum tube) in the 1920s by De Forest, which allowed amplification of traditional instruments. Artists like Varese and Xenakis paved the idea of a 'sound environment'. Debussy was one of the first composers to realise that the new age of technology would create its own sound distinct from that of the past. In the 20s people used the Theremin and Ondes Martenot to create some of the first electronic sound.

The first synthesisers came about in the 1950s, but were large and unweildy, requiring complex tuning and a network of patch cables. As such they were primarily restricted to laboratory work. Bob Moog's first synths were the first compact ynths - making synths available to any musician. People experimented with synths on record (Pink Floyd, The Beatles, The Who and -very unsuccessfully-Mick Jagger).

Programmable synths like the EMS Synthi A led to the first electronic production of a beat, picked up by The Who, Pink Floyd etc - for the most accomplished precursor of the techno beat listen to Pink Floyd's Dark Side of The Moon, the second track 'On The Run'.

As for the Theremin, The Beach Boys and Jimmy Page are the most accomplished users of the instrument within the mainstream.

From the mid 50s on you get multi-track recording (thanks Les Paul!), solid-body electric guitars, and then digitisation of synths as silicon chips take over.

That's the technology, the roots of techno lie in house, rock, disco and reggae. Reggae gave the idea of the extended instrumental, the 'version', which was 'toasted' over; the foundations of modern rap and hip-hop. It also gave birth to modern recording techniques, as engineers like Scientist, Augustus Pablo etc pushed the limits of music production. Jamaican sound-systems evolved to provide for the needs of the audience, a common set up of twin turntables, a PA, a DJ and MC influence the New York block parties of the 80s. This led to early Chicago House, through people like Frankie Knuckles and Kool Herc.

Then in 1977 Georgio Moroder and Donna Summer mix 'I Feel Love', a mix of disco and Kraftwerk.... it's all onto techno from there on. The oRb, DJ Shadow, Portishead (Beth Gibbons loved a bit of Theremin)....

Ah, just read some Mark Prendergast or David Toop, I can't go on...
Back to top
Erik
Guest





PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 4:52 pm    Post subject: Understanding Dr. Robert A. Moog's genius Reply with quote

OK, I've watched for months in astounded silence at all the goings on here, it is time to gather the four winds, so to speak, and set straight what seems to be a fundamental misunderstanding about Dr. Moog's contributions to both the Science of Synthesis and it's Art.

Those of you who worked at Moog Music, et al can be relied upon to add to what I'm going to start here, please!

To understand all of this, we will need several intellectual tools:

1.) A Timeline, an essential tool to understanding history.
2.) An understanding of the ways in which electronic music was created PRIOR to Moog. Hint: if your knowledge of electronics is weak or non-existant, this will be the toughest!
3.) A better-than-average ability to recognize patterns, trends and indicators.
4.) (optional) A sense of humor.

Note that if you are lacking in any of these, I cannot help you.

Timeline: Telharmonium, invented in 1906->Theremin, invented in 1919 -> the Trautonium invented in 1929 (see http://wired-vig.wired.com/news/culture/0,1284,7973,00.html for some other interesting highlights)
-> cut to: the mid-1950's Moog is (and has been for many years) selling Theremins and kits..when he gets an unusual order and you can read it in Moog's own words:
http://raymondscott.com/moog.html

Some synchronicity here!

http://raymondscott.com/Clavivox.html

Raymond Scott with his 1950s keyboard synthesizer invention, THE CLAVIVOX - look carefully, looks a LOT like a Minimoog, doesn't it?!

Now keep in mind, Moog has been working with the Theremin for a long time - he knows exactly how and why the two sides of the basic Theremin operate...HE CAN FEEL IT! Besides, as an EE, about to make history he has a keen sense of the history of electronic music, the circuits used to do so, AND now his mind ponders the notion of a standardized method to do so.

The RCA synthesizers and the Kent Music Box were old-hat by 1954; giants that demanded a large amount of floorspace, electricity and skill to operate - not to mention the fact that pure-additive or subtractive synthisis, even when done in a massivly parallel array is cumbersome and time-consuming as well as limited in the range of timbres available to the musician/user. Moog was well aware of the prior-art, right down to it's schematics!

Moog's genius is rooted deeply in the fact that he recognized and properly identified Voltage-Control as the underlying methodology which would transcend all prior methods. He also knew that a modular design would permit the widest latitude for voltage-control, and hence the broadest timbre pallet!

Oh it's HISTORY alright! But let's celebrate the actual process, as well as
the Man...and let's all remember that an "S-trigger" is not compatible with anything else...unless you translate it!

Cheers!

eks1@dslextreme.com

(Moog synth owner and fan since the first Model 15; now the rack holds my prized Mini, Satellite and Poly)
Back to top
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    MoogArchives.com Forum Index -> Moog Discussion Board All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group