Wednesday, 12 November 2014

The Art Of Electronic Music, 1984, GPI Publications

This collection of articles culled from Keyboard Magazine makes a very fine book. Features on individual artists such as Brian Eno and Wendy Carlos as well as a great piece on the Columbia/Princeton center (Ussachevsky & Luening interviewed).

The history of electronic music goes like this: it was brilliant when it was made by crusty-looking geezers in suits who looked like bank clerks but were actually pioneers producing fantastic music, then t-shirt-wearers with long hair came along and it was still good but things turned Proggy and druggy and went a bit wrong, then the Pop synth boom in the UK happened, which gives me an excuse to say I saw The Human League when there were just three of them (the visual artist, whose name I've forgotten, was considered, radically, to be the third member!) Thomas Dolby's in this book too, bringing it right up to date, eh? But electronic music's healthy again now, isn't it? Yes. So now you know...

Edouard Coupleux & Joseph Givelet with automatic synthesizer, 1929

RCA Mark II, 1955

Paul Ketoff & John Eaton with Synket, 1965

Raymond Scott's Electronium, 1965

NWDR studio, Cologne, 1953

Bob Moog & Roger Powell, 1974

Don Buchla

Wendy Carlos

Otto Luening (left) & Vladimir Ussachevsky, 1954

Susan Ciani


  1. Isn't it great that things that seem 'just yesterday' are now period pieces. In my view the Brandenburgs have never been done better than by Carlos.

    1. I think there must be a lot of great unreleased earlier work by Wendy. At my age, rather too much is now regarded as a 'period piece'!


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