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Part 0: About Me/This Area


Brassica Oleracea
Staff member
About this area:

A couple weeks ago, I had posted a thread mentioning that I was going to get back into the world of electronic music. Gandalfe (Jim) suggested it might be a good idea to make my journey into a series of posts that would help point folks in the right direction if they also wanted to try to play with electronica. This is that series.


About me:

Back in the mid-1980s through the early-1990s, I did a lot of work with electronic instruments and a variety of music software. Here's a partial list:

MOTU (Mark of the Unicorn) Professional Composer
MOTU Professional Performer

Macintosh 512K
Macintosh SE/30
Roland D-5 Keyboard
Roland D-50 Keyboard
Casio CZ-101 Keyboard
Roland U-110 Sound Module
Yamaha FB01 Sound Module
Yamaha WX11 Wind Controller

The primary use of the software was to create better-looking copies of handwritten scores and parts and/or transpose those parts for the instrumentation we had available in the orchestras and bands I worked with. The secondary use was to create "music minus one" tracks for live performance to supplement existing instruments or to replace a section, generally string.

I mostly retired from the performance world about 6-7 years ago: I have nerve damage in one leg, making it difficult for me to stand for too long. I also have cluster headaches, migraines, and occipital neuralgia that make it a bit painful whenever I sing too hard or play too hard. I also have some scar tissue from a partially collapsed lung. However, I have used wind controllers in the past, so I had initially considered getting one of those. I eventually came to realize that I more liked listening to music, but there were a bunch of pieces I wanted to listen to that only had sheet music available. Plus, there does seem to be a need for more of those "music minus one" parts for live performances with, say, my wife's middle school bands. So, I decided to see what I could do with electronic music.

This is mostly a hobby, so I didn't want to spend thousands of dollars. I had initially decided not to go over $550 US, which is the approximate price of a new Yamaha WX5 wind controller. However, for purposes of these articles, I'm going to try to do as much stuff as possible for free.
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