Saturday, May 7, 2011

Yes Giantess

I probably won't make many music posts on this blog, but one band that I don't hear enough about about is Yes Giantess. They're an old school synth pop band with Michael Jackson and Prince influences. Check 'em out. They can be seen using a Yamaha DX7 and a MicroKorg and what appears to be some sort of Roland Jupiter. EDIT: It's a Jupiter 6. Thanks to Z from the VintageSynth forums!

Building a sound: Choosing a waveform

A problem I ran into when I started to learn synthesizers was deciding what waveform to use. At first, it seems like it's clearly a preference of what type of waveform you want to use, but it is very important because it's the starting point of your sound. Usually, programmers pick the waveform first, and different waveforms have different purposes. For example, the sounds of a sawtooth are closer to that of strings, whereas the square wave is used for brassier sounds. Triangle waves can be mixed with noise to create synthetic drum sounds. Sine wave basses are popular in dance music.

Soviet Synths

Have you ever heard of soviet synthesizers?
I came across one of these by accident a few months ago on eBay and had never heard of them. Currently, I can only find a couple of the one in the video above (The Polivoks) on eBay, but they look pretty cool (excuse the weirdness in the video above). Definitely an interesting buy for someone who has the money. Unfortunately, most of us probably can't read the russian so I have no idea what the parameters are, although the one months ago had a translation of all of the parameters.

There's a nice site with tons of them listed here.

Propellerhead offering free music making videos

Propellerhead is offering free online webcasts on their website for the month of May. While Propellerhead is the company behind Reason and their videos are geared towards its users, the videos should be helpful to almost anyone who is making music on their computer. So far, videos on keyboard drumming, vocal recording, percussive sequencing tips, and starting your songs with loops. Many more webcasts are planned for this month, and you can rewatch any if you missed them.

Welcome to The Synthesizer Sympathizer!

Hello, and welcome to my new site, the Synthesizer Sympathizer (or the Synth Symp, or TSS for short). This will be a blog dedicated to making music on synths, and teaching you techniques for cool sounds, from the basics to more complex forms. I will also take requests on anything you want to see here, so email any requests to More to come soon!