We conclude our FM week with a very special interview with two legends.It was a privilege to host Don Lewis and Dr. John Chowning at Winter NAMM 2019.
Multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and electrical engineer Don Lewis is a primary influence for what became MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface). Don built an integrated keyboard system know as LEO (Live Electric Orchestra) nearly 10 years before the first MIDI keyboards were available. Roland founder Ikutaro Kakehashi credits Don Lewis as an inspiration for the development of this important protocol. A documentary entitled "The Ballad of Don Lewis" is in production about this visionary musician.
Dr. John Chowning is a composer, musician and founder of CCRMA (Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics) at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California. In 1967 Dr. Chowning discovered the FM Synthesis Algorithm, the technology behind the DX7 Digital Programmable Algorithm Synthesizer (see his paper "The Synthesis of Complex Audio Spectra by Means of Frequency Modulation" here). FM has evolved through the years with products like the SY77, SY99, FS1R, reface DX, MONTAGE and MODX, but the genesis of this synthesis technology all started with Dr. Chowning's research. His later work in the spatial aspects of musical acoustics was influential in the development of surround sound. Dr. Chowning is the Osgood Hooker Professor of Fine Arts and Professor Emeritus of Music at Stanford University.
Check out this memorable interview below:
Want to share your thoughts/comments? Join the conversation on the Forum here.
Yamaha Synthesizer Product Specialist Blake Angelos has over thirty years of experience with music hardware and software. An expert in music technology, Blake has conducted numerous clinics, master classes and presentations throughout the United States, Europe and Canada. In his role as Product Specialist for the Synthesizer Department Blake appears in many product videos and artist interviews, writes many articles for YamahaSynth.com and co-hosts a regular Podcast called “Behind the Synth”.
Before his work with Yamaha, he taught music theory and jazz studies courses at Arizona State University; managed a technology-focused music store in Seattle and was a production supervisor at Microsoft, where he led a team that developed groundbreaking interactive music content for the Microsoft Network. Blake holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Northern Colorado and a Master of Music degree from Arizona State University. Blake currently resides in Bellingham, Washington with his family, and between his travels around the world for Yamaha, he performs as much as possible with several jazz and creative music groups in Bellingham, Seattle and other places in the Pacific Northwest.