Profiles

Morton Subotnick, the pioneer of synthesizer, on what keeps him engaged in electronic music

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Morton Subtonick (due Thursday, April 26, at ATLAS Institute as part of the annual Communikey Festival) is the pioneer of synthesizer music. Before he commissioned engineer Don Buchla to build a device that didn't yet have a name, the synthesizer did not exist. Electronic music existed, but not to the degree of development possible after the creation of the synthesizer. Subotnick benefited from his lifelong curiosity and applied intelligence. That and a little good fortune put him in a circle of people that included a good deal of the American avant-garde of the '60s and '70s, including filmmaker Stan Brakhage.

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Tom Murphy is a writer, visual artist and musician from Aurora, Colorado. He was a prolific music writer for Westword and a documenter of the Denver music scene.