Book Recommendation: Mark Jenkins “Analog Synthesizers”

Highly recommendable: “Analog Synthesizers” by Mark Jenkins. The book presents the synthesizer history from 1960 up to 2007. It’s a wonderful addition to Mark Vail’s “Vintage Synthesizers” – we’d call it the British equivalent of the American book.

Mark Jenkins - Analog Synthesizers

Mark Jenkins - Analog Synthesizers

Interesting detail: the cover picture (no, it’s not Cindy Crawford!) shows the Korg MS-20 software synthesizer controller (and not the “real” thing from 1978). But perhaps this is part of Jenkin’s philosophy. He discusses all analog synthesizers – the Minimoog as well as virtual analog keyboards such as the Access Virus … and pure software synthesizers, too.

All modules of the Technosaurus Selector system are listed. (c) Mark Jenkins, Elsevier Ltd.

All modules of the Technosaurus Selector system are listed. (c) Mark Jenkins, Elsevier Ltd.

Also fascinating is the fact that this book shows all the modules of the Technosaurus Selector system (with exception of the sequencer prototype), even those which never went into production: Frequency Shifter and Morphing Filter never saw the light of day.

Alesis Andromeda, Modcan B and Oakley modulars. (c) Mark Jenkins, Elsevier Ltd.

Alesis Andromeda, Modcan B and Oakley modulars. (c) Mark Jenkins, Elsevier Ltd.

Mark Jenkins “Analog Synthesizers”
Published 2007 by Elsevier Ltd.

322 pages, with audio-CD (containing samples of more than 30 instruments).
ISBN: 978-0-240-52072-8

“Analog Synthesizers” is available on Amazon.

Filed under Books

“Es genügt, einen Ton schön zu spielen” sagte der Komponist Arvo Pärt im Jahre 2005. Diese Aussage ist ebenso einfach wie ich auch exzellent: Es braucht kein Meer an Tönen, denn entscheidend ist der Klang. Dass so mancher Vintage-Synthesizer der 70er und 80er Jahre teils unerreicht hochwertige Klänge liefert, steht außer Frage. Doch tatsächlich leben wir “heute” in einer nahezu perfekten Zeit. Einerseits hat man – mehr oder weniger – noch Zugriff auf die Vintage Analogen, andererseits wird auch bei Neugeräten die wichtige Komponente des hochwertigen Klanges wieder zunehmend berücksichtigt. Doepfer, Cwejman, Synthesizers.com, MacBeth, Moog, GRP, Studio Electronics, COTK, John Bowen und andere Hersteller bauen hervorragende Synthesizer, die den “Klassikern” in nichts nachstehen. All diesen (alten wie neuen) “großartigen” Instrumenten ist Great Synthesizers gewidmet. _________________________________________________________ In 2005 composer Arvo Pärt said: “Playing one tone really well is enough”. In other words, it is sufficient to play one tone 'beautifully'. I agree with that. All musical efforts are focused on the sound itself. Although I studied classical music (piano and drums), it’s the electronic sound that inspires me. Synthesizers are the epitome of new sounds and exciting tonal spheres. Today, many companies produce high-quality - excellent! - synthesizers: Doepfer, Cwejman, MacBeth, Moog, GRP, Synthesizers.com, COTK, Studio Electronics, John Bowen and others. It's their products I'm really interested in ... apart from Vintage Synthesizers, which I have been collecting for 20 years. Subsequent to our former websites Bluesynths and Blogasys, Peter Mahr and I have now created GreatSynthesizers. We hope you like it.