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date: 08 April 2020


  • Hugh Davies


A Synthesizer, several models of which were designed by Donald (Frederick) Buchla (b Southgate, CA, April 17, 1937; d Berkeley, CA, Sept 14, 2016) and manufactured by Buchla Associates (later Buchla & Associates) in Berkeley, California, since 1964. Between 1969 and 1971 CBS Musical Instruments had manufacturing and marketing rights to the original model. Donald Buchla gained experience in electronics by building devices such as a sonar-like guide for blind people and also constructed acoustic sound sculptures; in 1962 he began designing voltage-controlled electronic music modules for the San Francisco Tape Music Center (SFTMC), and in the following year a complete Buchla synthesizer was installed there. The instrument became commercially available in 1964. A close collaborator in this development was the co-founder of the SFTMC, the composer Morton Subotnick, who with his tape works produced on Buchla instruments (including several created for gramophone recordings) became their best-known exponent....

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