What was your gateway drug into synthesis?

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
MrFrodo
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Post by MrFrodo » Sun Jul 13, 2008 12:19 am

I may have already replied to this thread. And if not, one like it.

There were several influences that pushed me into the world of synthesis (of one kind or another). One of the first was hearing the instrumental section of "Rosanna" by Toto at the age of three. There were other bands and artists through the 80's whose arrangements and synthesis "tactics" had their effects on me.

But, it was during the mid 90's amid a fancy for the best-known music of Styx that I stumbled into the synthesis world. My grandfather bought my my first rea synth (as opposed to a combo keyboard) in early 1997, after I tried playing a broken, empty version of "Fooling Yourself" o a digital piano in late 1996.

This was before I started learning the less finite elements of analog synthesis and realtime control.

It was when I met an old friend of mine that I started seriously exploring the "lucrative" world of realtime synthesis with his JX-8p. That's why I always promote it as an educational tool, both with the PG programmer and from its actual front panel.
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Post by nvbrkr » Sun Jul 13, 2008 8:42 am

A Kawai FS630. A little above a toy keyboard, now I hear it supposedly sounded similar to an AdLib soundcard on the PC.

The worst part was when I really started getting into jazz at 16, so let me just tell you the piano sound didn't exactly cut it when playing "Eye of the Hurricane".

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Post by Untouchable_888 » Sun Jul 13, 2008 1:33 pm

buhler wrote:i know i'm gonna get it for this but my "gateway" into synthesis was....

ACE OF BASE

i know, i know. i suppressed the urge for many years but i finally am letting it out now. (i am married by the way, to a woman.)

"the sign" mmm...
Dude I LOVE Ace of Base. I mean, they didnt get me into synths, but I have loved it EVER sincve i was like 4. Same goes With Duran Duran. The older I got, i kinda rejected my synth-pop (or whatever you want to call it) roots. But now, i adhere to them!!
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Post by Arpnutt » Sun Jul 13, 2008 7:09 pm

Hossinfeffa wrote:The music for Disney's Main Street Electrical Parade started it for me. That and the original music you heard while waiting to ride on Space Mountain.
I actually got to see Micheal Iceberg perform that music live at Disney around 1978 or so. His show was incredible. He had all these different "samples" he played as well. Must have been using a mellotron or something similar back then. Anyway, I talked my grandmother into buying me a used Arp Axxe in 1981 and I've been hooked ever since.

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Post by basssdude34 » Mon Jul 14, 2008 10:43 am

primative wrote:NIN.

Lotsa other stuff later, but that was the beginning.
lol same with me, that and Pink Floyd

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Post by guitarsandsynths » Mon Jul 14, 2008 4:23 pm

Blue Wind on shrooms!!!!! Yeah!!!!
Minimoog ModelD Prophet5 Roland Jupiter8 SH7 GR9 CSQ100 TR606 TR707 TR727 Oberheim OB8 ARP2600 KorgVC10 Rhodes73 Wurlitzer 200A ClavinetII DOTCOM PearlDRX1 TamaTS202 Simmons SDS9

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Post by synth3tik » Tue Jul 15, 2008 2:45 am

A pawn shop I stopped into when I was 14... They had an MiniMoog. My GAWD!! it was sweet. I guy had just come in to buy it. I guess he had looked at it earlier and came back with the cash. I was busy making senseless sounds, err noises and one store employee started unplugging the Moog and getting set for the guy as the other employee picked me up, moved me away from the board and held me back as the other guy took it out the door. I was really dismayed.

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Post by cram1960 » Tue Jul 15, 2008 3:08 am

1977
Kraftwerk - Trans Europe Express
Giorgio Moroder - From Here To Eternity
Space - Magic Fly

1984
Purchased Casio CozmoSynthesizer CZ-101, 1st synth.
Craig
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Post by MarsHottentot » Tue Jul 15, 2008 3:42 am

A growing disgust with 'Grunge' mixed with a desire to create music that had nothing in common with Pearl Jam/ STP etc. (I loved Nirvana, Mudhoney, Tad, Melvins - the fun stuff). Initially back in the 80's I hated synthesizers, or more accurately, ROMplers (to me there was no difference). The sound of a keyboard 'pretending' and failing spectacularly to be, say a harp, just bored the s**t out of me.

I started getting into this band from Ohio called 'Brainiac' around '93, who sounded like nothing that was going around at the time. The guitars were all overly effected, herky j**k, the vocals were hi pitched vocoded yelps and they had a Mini Moog just blasting through the majority of the tracks. They sounded like a Devo record left out in the rain. This thought brought me back to Devo, around this time I also discovered CAN (who may be my favorite band), which led to Cluster, Faust, Kraftwerk. I had someone comment that my stuff (around '95) sounded like PiL, so I checked them and totally fell in love with them (Flowers of Romance esp). My first synth was a Crumar Trilogy - which is basically an organ/string machine with some filters on it, followed by the much more 'up my alley' Roland 707 & 700 synth guitar. The fact that I could play guitar lines that sounded like a tape being rewound - I was sold on synths for good. And before eBay and the New Wave revival - they were soooo cheap!

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Post by furthestreaches » Tue Jul 22, 2008 6:01 am

I'm a guitar player and in 2003 or 2004 in my search for new sounds I bought a Line-6 Filter Modeler pedal. I had no idea what a filter was, but the description of what the pedal could do intrigued me. The little booklet that comes with it describes some of the sounds it tries to "model" and mentions a few synthesizers, including the Minimoog if I'm not mistaken.

This awoke in me an interest in synthesizers, which lead me to an article about the DX7 that said that it was capable of producing the widest array of sounds of any instrument ever made. I found one in a local store and bought a few of the pre-set sound cartridges for it and really enjoyed playing it. I found programming it to be inscrutable, however. Still, I was able to use it in my music, and I thought some of the sounds it made were pretty f'ing cool.

The one day I found myself in a pawnshop which had two Minimoogs and a Prophet T8 for sale. They were all marked down quite a bit from the listed price I found out after talking to one of the employees. They all looked pretty cool, but especially with the Prophet I had no idea what they were exactly. So I went home and looked them up online and listened to some samples and decided I had to have both. I had a credit card I'd paid down to zero, so I went back to the pawn shop and bought them the next day.

So no s**t I went from never playing an analog synth before to owning a Minimoog and a Prophet T8 in one day. I know that's totally ridiculous, but it's true.

Of course I knew nothing about programming analog synthesizers, so with the Moog at first it was totally random that I got any good sounds out of it, and with the Prophet I'd just dial up a pre-set and play away and kinda twist the knobs at random.

It's been over two years I've owned them now and I'm finally just this year getting to the point with the Prophet where I usually bypass the pre-sets and come up with a new sound from scratch every time I play it. The Moog was a lot easier to figure out, of course.

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Post by hyphen nation » Tue Jul 22, 2008 6:58 am

ok, what pawn shop in PDX had two mini's and a prophet???

Old Town used to get some mini's through now and then, but I haven' seen one in there in years...
Last edited by hyphen nation on Tue Jul 22, 2008 3:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by Hossinfeffa » Tue Jul 22, 2008 7:08 am

hyphen nation wrote:ok, what pawn shop in PDX had two mini's and an prophet???

Old Town used to get some mini's through now and then, but I haven' seen one in there in years...
I found a pawn shop that had a Roland V-Synth and an Alesis Andromeda; among various other equipment. I bought the Alesis and asked why someone was getting rid of it. The employee said a musician came in and sold off most of his equipment to put the money towards bills. I feel rather sorry for the guy.
Well fffff.

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Post by Untouchable_888 » Tue Jul 22, 2008 1:22 pm

Dang it.

Why can't I have a decent pawn shop in my town? Now I am seriously jealous.
The only decent "synth" that I have ever found marked down and such was my sk-60..... :(

Not that I hate it. It is cool, and fun, but :(.
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