August 3, 2013

Tomorrowland at Twilight

I've spent many evenings in Tomorrowland. Watching the sun go down and the crowds empty out as they go off to find a place to watch the parade. Now when I'm there it's like driving past an old house one used to live in. I know it's ridiculous to feel like that about a public place, especially one that thousands of people walk through every day, but I do. I feel like we had a special connection, me and Tomorrowland, like I understood her on a deeper level than most people who came through just looking for a cheap thrill. I loved it just as it was; I didn't see the need for constant updates in order to stay relevant (because of course that is a losing battle!). But the fact of the matter is that Tomorrowland is part of a larger kingdom that does what it must to survive. So now whenever I see an attraction updated, or worse: removed, it's like seeing your old house painted some color that you never imagined it being, or burned to the ground. Why do we grow so attached to things and places? It's inevitable that they'll change… or we'll change and they'll stay the same. And that is why it's much better to be attached to people, at least that way there is the possibility of growing together. 

I suppose you're probably wondering when I'll talk about synthesizers again, since that is the theme of this blog. Well, I don't know. I guess I can tell you what's going on right now. We're playing a music festival tonight in Spain and my ProMars started having crazy tuning issues just before I left home, so I brought my SH-1 instead. The implications are that I won't have my preset sounds to work with, so I'll be doing everything on the fly. I'm kind of excited to do it. I've been practicing a good deal. There is a little switch on the SH-1 that let's you select between two different envelope generators to effect the VCA. I never cared about this feature until now... I'm very grateful for it. 


  1. It will be interesting to have different sounds for each song than you are used to, though I know how nerve racking it can be to have to swiftly change and sculpt sounds between/during songs. I choose to do it with my SH-101 in a band i used to be in, because it's nice having that slight variance each time.

    I sometimes used patch sheets, which are available in the link below. Having one for each song on a music stand was quite helpful sometimes!

  2. I'd been doing the same thing with the SH-1 for Cascading Slopes concerts so I was already getting familiar with the practice. And yeah, I also do keep some notes with me on stage about each song, but the main note is what octave I have the oscillator set to and which octave a play which parts on the keyboard, because the SH-1's keyboard is significantly shorter than the ProMars' keyboard so I have to be mindful of that.

    I was thinking that the envelope selector switch must have be incorporated with live playing in mind... it nice that the SH-1 has it's own separate noise in the mixer but if it were just one of the oscillator shapes like on the 09, it would be better for live playing cause you could quickly switch to it rather than using two faders.

    It has been fun though....

  3. This might be the most legit synthesizer conversation we've ever had around here, haha!

  4. Haha there has been an absence of electronic discussion!

    The SH-09 is very similiar to the RS-09 and SA-09 in size, and alot of the stuff from the late 70's was still being manufactured for organ-top use. (Even the Jupiter 4 was!). So i think everything was manufactured with some thoughts in mind regarding their use in live performances.

    The SH-1's enveloper switch is sort of a short cut to switching sounds, as it means if the second EG is prepared, it's one less thing to worry about adjusting in a live performance. It could be seen as a sort of patch! Though there would only be two patches available haha, it would be useful for changing a sound from a legato to a short, percussive staccato instantly, without worrying about four different ADSR faders!

    Though am i right in thinking that second EG has only attack and release?


  5. Yeah, only attack ad release on that second envelope, but for legato sounds that's enough for me.

    And switching quickly between legato and staccato sounds is the main thing I need so that little switch really makes a world of difference for me!

  6. Looks like we have similar interests. [IMG][/IMG]

  7. Haha! That's awesome! Hey, how do you like that SH-5? I'm interested in that... maybe someday.

  8. That's right, but still I believe is something good, getting really attached to something or somewhere.
    For sure it's gonna hurt when you love it a certain way and it changes or gets lost or destroyed, but it hurts because it matters. I believe that's way much more interesting and important than never really caring so that those things/places won't hurt.
    I've always gone for the idea of being enthusiastic about something you like, even if that means that it's going to hurt badly when it's gone.

    Also, I believe as we can try to grow together with other people, we might try to learn to love a place that has changed, or at least, remember it the way it was and still love it for that.. I wanna believe that 'cause one of my favourites places on earth, that one secret spot, is changing and will never be the same again. I believe I'll always keep in my heart the memory of what it was and how wonderful it was being there!