CatSynth Pic: Bill on Quarantine (Vintage Synthesizer Museum)

Bill enjoys the quarantine life with an Arturia MicroFreak and sundry Strymon pedals. Via our friends at the Vintage Synthesizer Museum.

You can see our visit to the Vintage Synthesizer Museum earlier this year in this video.

This was from the beginning of February. Not so long ago in time, but a world away from where we are now.

CatSynth Pic: Fluff and Roland SH-101

Fluff loves his Roland SH-101. Here we see him ready to tweak the VCF on this classic synthesizer.

Submitted by Rene Ubachs via our Facebook page.

CatSynth Pic: Self-Oscillating

We at CatSynth have been enjoying this meme over the last half-year. But this may be my favorite instance to date πŸ˜ΉπŸŽΉπŸŽ›.

The first synth I had that could self-oscillate was the Evolver from Dave Smith Instruments (now Sequential). I enjoyed performing with the “fifth oscillator” as I called it. Since then I have found myself experimenting with such phenomena on many a module.

Wordless Wednesday: Yerba Buena

Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco, a couple of weeks ago.

RIP Manu Dibango 1933-2020

We say goodbye to another musical hero. Manu Dibango passed away today at his home in France, apparently of complications from Covid-19.

Like many others, I knew Dibango’s music initially through the song “Soul Makossa.” I had heard it on and off over the years, but it was after delving more seriously into the history of 1970s disco in 2010 that I rediscovered the song and its connection to the early disco gatherings of New York including David Mancuso’s Loft parties. It was a B-side of a single that Mancuso found and it became an instant proto-disco hit, and on regular rotation in my own playlist in the early 2010s. It also went on to be a major influence on R&B and funk. It was instantly recognizable with the chat “Soul Makossa”, Dibango’s growling saxophone and catchy horn hook.

Dibango was originally from Cameroon – indeed makossa is a traditional style of Cameroonian music and came up in central Africa’s jazz scene, including African Jazz in Kinshasa, Congo. Over the years he has collaborated with other heroes of ours including Fela Kuti and Herbie Hancock, with whom he recorded the album Electric Africa in the 1980s.

It is jarring to hear of Dibango’s death being so connected to the current crisis, and certainly not the last. His music represents, at least for me, simpler and brighter times, the optimism and nostalgia of the 1970s, and more. RIP.

CatSynth Pic: Nina and Novation Bass Station

Nina lays claim to a Novation Bass Station synthesizer in this pic from ros_franck on Instagram.

CatSynth Video: Jazz Piano and Cat

Yes, some may debate whether a cat and piano constitute a “CatSynth pic”, but this is absolutely the content we need today.

CatSynth Pic: Merce and microKORG

Our friend Merce the Cat (@Merce_the_cat on Twitter) rests comfortably against a microKORG.

CatSynth Pic: Loki and Novation Bass Station 2

Loki getting comfortable on top of a Novation Bass Station 2. From thedigitalpurrgatory on Instagram.

Wordless Wednesday with Big Merp

Merp is ready to share a glass of wine with his human friends.

With wine, cats, good music, and intellectual and artistic curiosity, we will get through this.