Making sounds with Suzanne Ciani, America's first female synth hero | Musique Non Stop


Saturday, May 20, 2017

Making sounds with Suzanne Ciani, America's first female synth hero

She was one of the few women working in sound design during the 1970s and here she talks about a long career, from appearing on Letterman to how she ended up making the famous Coke noise

It might not seem so much of a stretch any more, but imagine spending your entire life in a tempestuous relationship with a machine. Not a sleek smartphone or tablet – we’ve seen how that can escalate in Spike Jonze’s Her. Instead picture a tapestry of tangled multicoloured wires, knobs and buttons, a bulky modular synthesizer otherwise known as the Buchla. Suzanne Ciani has spent much of her career testing the limits of one of these cumbersome instruments. So dedicated to its oscillating drones, burbles and bleeps did she become that has jokingly referred to the Buchla as “her boyfriend”. At times that affair was “traumatic”, she says now, down the phone from her studio in the Californian coastal enclave of Bolinas, sounding like both Marilyn Monroe and a Woodstock hippie. “Technology’s always very risky – you never know when it might break.”

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by Kate Hutchinson via Electronic music | The Guardian
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