Thomas Dolby

Tuesday, May 23, Bluebird Theater, 1-866-468-7621.

Tell us, Mr. Dolby, how did she blind you with science? Did it hurt? Or maybe your 1983 chart-topping synth-pop hit, "She Blinded Me With Science," was meant to be understood as a metaphor -- where "blinded" really means "bedazzled," and "science" can be substituted for "her wicked perm and/or '80s hairspray-molded bangs." Either way, that song was a dance-floor powder keg in the decade of power ties spotted with cocaine, and today Dolby stands as a synthesizer genius of all things electronica. Bred in London but now based in California, Dolby has spent much of his career out of the glare of the MTV spotlight. But his sound engineering and production skills -- as well as collaborative efforts -- have been linked with the likes of Herbie Hancock, David Bowie, Foreigner, George Clinton and even post-punkers the Fall. Oh, and remember that top-selling single "Magic's Wand," by rap pioneers Whodini? Yeah, Dolby wrote and produced it. Dolby's own work stands somewhere between contemporary adult pop and experimental meanderings into gadgets and wires -- like a musician who got, well, blinded with science.

 
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