One of the headliners here at the 5th annual Maker Faire Detroit today was Herb Deutsch, co-inventor of the Moog synthesizer.
It was a beautiful synergy: the 50th anniversary of the first Moog—which Maker Faire host, The Henry Ford, has in it’s collection and had on display in the hallway just outside the theater where Deutsch spoke.
Deutsch was engaging and charming and relaxed, recounting his collaboration with Moog through storytelling and performance. He played a tape of Bob Moog playing with his first iteration of the Moog; Bob Moog calls it the “Abominatron” on the recording.
Then Deutsch played the theremin with a recording of Edgard Varèse’s 1958 electronic music composition “Poème électronique”—a world first-ever performance, according to Deutsch.
A lifelong musician and composer, Deutsch cited John Cage as an early influence and read some excerpts from Cage’s Silence. Deutsch quoted Cage: “Music is the organization of sound.”
A really nice complement to the program was the placement of some impressive young buck analog makers in the foyer of the theater.
“Close Encounters of the Synth Kind,” a special presentation during the Faire that brings together the pioneers, experts and Makers involved with the ongoing legacy of synthesizers and experimental electronics. Sunday’s program concludes with:
“Everything Must Go: Vocoder Clearance in the Deformation Age of NSA and Electrofunk”
“Detroit as Refrain”
Thank you Herbert Deutsch!