Tuesday, November 06, 2012

The First Man On The Moog

"Herbert Deutsche: From Moog To Mac" is shaping up to be the reissue of the year.  It's a long-overdue career retrospective of an electronic music pioneer who was Bob Moog's right-hand man. I was happy to see that "Jazz Images, A Worksong and Blues," the first piece of music ever  recorded using a Moog Synthesizer was included in this collection. And a pretty cool piece of space jazz it is - the almost 10 minute long 1965 landmark work also includes Deutsche's piano and trumpet skillz.

Except for an '80s drum-machine pop vocal misfire, the rest of the album is solid, including tape music concrete pieces dating to the pre-Moog early '60s, right up to some lovely recent songs for piano+theremin, with stops along the way for some space-age Shakespeare, a bit of operatic vox, and more future-jazz courtesy of a sax-enhanced version of the traditional black American lament "Sometimes I Feel Like a Motherless Child".

I digitized an 7" ep of Deutsche's that I bought at a used shop ages ago that apparently was meant to accompany a book about electronic music that Deutsche wrote in the '70s. Each side is only 5-6 minutes long, but it's plenty fun.  Side a features Deutsche's narration as he demonstrates basic tape functions, then creates a nutty tape loop.  Side b features narration-free instros, including some really wacked-out tape loopiness and a wicked bit of Moog funk.

Herbert Deutsche - three tracks

1. "Jazz Images, A Worksong and Blues" from "Herbert Deutsche: From Moog To Mac"
2. Synthesis side a:  "Tape Studies 1-4"
3. Synthesis side b:  "Tape Study #6 (A Branch of My Anguish)"; "Tape Study #6 (Circe)"; "Synthesizer Studies 1-3"

1 comment:

Dirk Bill said...

Link is dead, unfortunately. And I thought I'd heard of all the Moog guys. But not Herb!