ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
User avatar
CJ the noisemaker
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 118
Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2008 12:12 am
Gear: Novation X Station 49
Korg Poly 61M
Band: Hokago Family Band
Location: Mesa, AZ

ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by CJ the noisemaker » Sun Mar 15, 2009 3:48 am

In the 1970's, Moog and ARP were head-to-head competitors and the analog synthesizer business. But what did that mean to the music industry?
It meant diddly-squat.
Think of an artist or band from that era, when they had synthesizers, there was no "Pro-ARP", "Anti-Moog" etc. type of group. (this actually made me think of Jexus, lol) However, the music machines were paired like brother and sister in numerous records. From what I hear in songs from the 70's, the setup is like this:
1. The moog would play the bass and/or leads
2. The ARP would be programmed to play the brass sounds or occasionally, the bass.

And in a way, the setup for it's time is like our more "popular" music setups of Yamaha Motif's and Roland Fantoms.

So far, here is the best I can come up for ARP/Moog albums:
-Stevie Wonder:
Innervisions
Talking Book
Fulfillingness First Finale

-Gary Wright:
Dreamweaver
Light of Simles

-Bee Gee's
Main Course (Jive Talkin')
Being that you can do so many things with it [the synthesizer]... you can make sounds bigger than life.
-Stevie Wonder

User avatar
Christopher Winkels
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
Posts: 690
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:52 am
Location: Burlington, Canada, eh.

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Christopher Winkels » Sun Mar 15, 2009 2:30 pm

I seem to recall there being a few musicians who, while not "anti" a particular manufacturer of instruments, were definitely partisans for the other brand. Some of that loyalty may have been because of the relative levels of support from the manufacturer, or comfort with the layout and design philosophy (ARP sliders versus Moog knobs), or just the intrinsic sound.

I can't think of Edgar Winter and Moog in the same sentence, for example. And try as I might, I don't recall any Tony banks solos done on a Moog or any ELP tracks featuring ARP instruments.

User avatar
Micke
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 2329
Joined: Sat Sep 18, 2004 12:50 pm
Location: Sweden

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Micke » Sun Mar 15, 2009 4:24 pm

While "Light Of Smiles" features the ARP/Solina string ensemble to some extent, I'd say it's is more of a Moog/Oberheim album. All the orchestral sounds, the woodwinds, some of the strings, the flutes etc were actually done on an Oberheim Four-voice and the solos were about 50/50 Moog and Oberheim. A good example of the latter synth can be heard on "Water Sign" where it provides both the solo and pads.
"The (Yamaha) CS-80 is a step ahead in keyboard control, and a generation behind in digital control" -- Dan Wyman, Jan 1979

User avatar
Esus
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 741
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:58 am

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Esus » Sun Mar 15, 2009 6:54 pm

One thing to keep in mind is that, in the 70s, ARP had a very aggressive marketing/endorsement campaign, IMO, compared to Moog. You could hardly read Contemporary Keyboard or other mag from that era that didn't have numerous ads with heavyweight artists playing ARP gear--Zawinul, George Duke, Pete Townsend, Edgar Winter, etc. Even switch-hitters (Herbie comes to mind) would be shown extolling the virtues of the Odyssey or Little Brother.
Since the nature of most endorsement agreements pretty much preclude the artist actively using competitive product, the sense was that ARP pretty much ruled the synth landscape, and undoubtedly fueled a lot of "ARP good/Moog not-as-good" perception. I've read several Bob Moog quotes to the effect that he never considered himself much of a businessman. To add to that, of the Musonic/Norlin ownerships probably added to the lack of a cohesive Moog marketing strategy during those times.

My 2¢

User avatar
guitarsandsynths
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 520
Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2008 7:05 am
Real name: Angelo Metz
Band: Brazility
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by guitarsandsynths » Sun Mar 15, 2009 7:02 pm

Who would be lucky enough to own both machines????
Image
Don't they look lovely togheter?
:lol:
Minimoog ModelD Prophet5 Roland Jupiter8 SH7 GR9 CSQ100 TR606 TR707 TR727 Oberheim OB8 ARP2600 KorgVC10 Rhodes73 Wurlitzer 200A ClavinetII DOTCOM PearlDRX1 TamaTS202 Simmons SDS9

User avatar
Christopher Winkels
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
Posts: 690
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:52 am
Location: Burlington, Canada, eh.

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Christopher Winkels » Sun Mar 15, 2009 8:14 pm

Esus wrote:One thing to keep in mind is that, in the 70s, ARP had a very aggressive marketing/endorsement campaign, IMO, compared to Moog. You could hardly read Contemporary Keyboard or other mag from that era that didn't have numerous ads with heavyweight artists playing ARP gear--Zawinul, George Duke, Pete Townsend, Edgar Winter, etc. Even switch-hitters (Herbie comes to mind) would be shown extolling the virtues of the Odyssey or Little Brother.
Since the nature of most endorsement agreements pretty much preclude the artist actively using competitive product, the sense was that ARP pretty much ruled the synth landscape, and undoubtedly fueled a lot of "ARP good/Moog not-as-good" perception. I've read several Bob Moog quotes to the effect that he never considered himself much of a businessman. To add to that, of the Musonic/Norlin ownerships probably added to the lack of a cohesive Moog marketing strategy during those times.

My 2¢
Very well put. I guess the counter-argument to this is that the word Moog became something of a eponym (i.e. back in the early '70s some people not intimately familiar with synthesizers used the word "Moog" to denote all makes of synths, much as we say "Xerox" for photocopier or "Kleenex" for tissue). Synthesizer records were often called "Moog Records" simply because the average punter wasn't able to distinguish between various manufacturers.

User avatar
Esus
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 741
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:58 am

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Esus » Sun Mar 15, 2009 9:27 pm

Christopher Winkels wrote:I guess the counter-argument to this is that the word Moog became something of a eponym (i.e. back in the early '70s some people not intimately familiar with synthesizers used the word "Moog" to denote all makes of synths, much as we say "Xerox" for photocopier or "Kleenex" for tissue). Synthesizer records were often called "Moog Records" simply because the average punter wasn't able to distinguish between various manufacturers.
And, I might add, the vast majority of those Moog records were s**t. After the success of S-OB, many labels (U.S. in particular) assumed that all they had to do was buy a Carlos-like system, have someone play a cheesy lead line over an even cheesier backing track, and the cash would pour in. The IIIp on the cover of S-OB is supposedly one CBS (Columbia) purchased for that very purpose (Carlos used a "c" style system). The Moog Archives site has a listing of early buyers, and there are more than a few modulars that went to record labels.
Ultimately, those records (and any backlash they created) probably hurt Moog and helped ARP.

User avatar
Esus
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 741
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:58 am

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Esus » Sun Mar 15, 2009 9:29 pm

guitarsandsynths wrote:Who would be lucky enough to own both machines????
Image
Don't they look lovely togheter?
:lol:
I'm digging that M-3 peering in from the left! :)

User avatar
Christopher Winkels
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
Posts: 690
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 12:52 am
Location: Burlington, Canada, eh.

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Christopher Winkels » Mon Mar 16, 2009 12:36 am

Esus wrote:
Christopher Winkels wrote:I guess the counter-argument to this is that the word Moog became something of a eponym (i.e. back in the early '70s some people not intimately familiar with synthesizers used the word "Moog" to denote all makes of synths, much as we say "Xerox" for photocopier or "Kleenex" for tissue). Synthesizer records were often called "Moog Records" simply because the average punter wasn't able to distinguish between various manufacturers.
And, I might add, the vast majority of those Moog records were s**t.
No argument there.

But for every person turned off by a c**p Moog record there were probably just as many who saw and heard Emerson's "telephone exchange" modular, Roger Powell, Tangerine Dream, or TONTO (which admittedly had some ARP components) and said "yup, gotta get me one of those".

Besides, if you corral a hundred non-musicians over the age of 40 and ask them if they know what an "ARP" is, to a man they'll likely shrug. The same can't be said if you throw the word "Moog" out there. The majority might not know, but a significant minority will.

User avatar
hfinn
Expert Member
Expert Member
Posts: 1197
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2004 3:21 pm
Gear: http://soundcloud.com/heath-finnie
Location: Boston
Contact:

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by hfinn » Mon Mar 16, 2009 1:32 am

guitarsandsynths wrote:Who would be lucky enough to own both machines????
Image
Don't they look lovely togheter?
:lol:
I used to own both. Great fun.

zwegner
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2009 7:18 pm

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by zwegner » Mon Mar 16, 2009 5:28 am

guitarsandsynths wrote:Who would be lucky enough to own both machines????
Don't rub it in!!

Oh well, I'm halfway there, and my mini is making me very happy. :D

User avatar
Esus
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 741
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 10:58 am

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Esus » Mon Mar 16, 2009 5:35 am

Christopher Winkels wrote:if you corral a hundred non-musicians over the age of 40 and ask them if they know what an "ARP" is, to a man they'll likely shrug. The same can't be said if you throw the word "Moog" out there. The majority might not know, but a significant minority will.
Except if you pronounce it correctly, they won't know what the h**l you're talking about; say "Moooog", and you have a chance. :lol:

User avatar
Clavier
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 547
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2007 7:22 am
Gear: A distraction.
Band: Rhode Out West
Location: California

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by Clavier » Mon Mar 16, 2009 6:42 am

Esus wrote:
guitarsandsynths wrote:Who would be lucky enough to own both machines????
Image
Don't they look lovely togheter?
:lol:
I'm digging that M-3 peering in from the left! :)
He should put the Arp on top of the M-3. =D>
Hammond RT-2, Hammond M3, Hammond L-102, Rhodes mk1 suitcase 88, Sequential Circuits Prophet-5, Yamaha TX-802, Fender Twin Reverb, Leslie 45

User avatar
guitarsandsynths
Active Member
Active Member
Posts: 520
Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2008 7:05 am
Real name: Angelo Metz
Band: Brazility
Location: Los Angeles
Contact:

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by guitarsandsynths » Mon Mar 16, 2009 8:31 am

Clavier wrote:
Esus wrote:
guitarsandsynths wrote:Who would be lucky enough to own both machines????
Image
Don't they look lovely togheter?
:lol:
I'm digging that M-3 peering in from the left! :)
He should put the Arp on top of the M-3. =D>
It doesn't fit the arp and the keyboard ! :(
Minimoog ModelD Prophet5 Roland Jupiter8 SH7 GR9 CSQ100 TR606 TR707 TR727 Oberheim OB8 ARP2600 KorgVC10 Rhodes73 Wurlitzer 200A ClavinetII DOTCOM PearlDRX1 TamaTS202 Simmons SDS9

jupiter8
Junior Member
Junior Member
Posts: 198
Joined: Sat Aug 05, 2006 3:30 pm
Location: Sweden

Re: ARP 2600 and Minimoog: A match made in Heaven

Post by jupiter8 » Mon Mar 16, 2009 1:29 pm

If you read thru Alan Wilder's Q&A on his site pretty much every: What synth was used for bass in XXX question is answered with a : i don't remember exactly. Most likely a combination of a MiniMoog and an Arp 2600.

Post Reply