Jack Hertz

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About Jack Hertz

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    Bay Area, CA
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    Sound Design, FM Synthesis, Publishing, Improvised music, Music Concrete, Digital Synthesis, Visual Design, Video Production, Software Development, Unix, Outdoors, Spirituality, Reading, Publishing

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  1. No turkey with my Swiss...

     

     

  2. I am thankful I don't have to choose. Have a happy Thanksgiving!

     

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  3. Ether Music by David Lee Myers

    This CD premieres ten works from David Lee Myers, the most prolific composer of Feedback Music. The album’s content spontaneously emerged from Myers’ self-designed, hand-built conglomerations of elaborately interconnected sound processing devices, with no external audio input. Some call the results “sounds from the ether” (hence this album’s title). The CD’s music is distinctive and enticing. We hear an otherworldly, hallucinatory trip to a Martian jungle; irregularly accented bongos overlaid with frog-croaked arpeggios; a rapidly sputtering, helium-inhaling synthesizer; a demented organ, gasping for life; all concluding with the piece dorsal streaming, which presents a lovely, placid atmosphere, tinged with calming panpipe-like chuffing. Dan Visconti writes: “ 'Ether Music' is hardly David Lee Myers’ first foray into this brand of sonic invention, where explorations on the edge of audible electronics mirror a visionary quest into the same electronic pulse that inhabits all organic life. It’s a place where advanced technical experimentation forms the perfect complement for this ancient journey through the bardos of vivid inner landscapes aglow with the fission of an illuminated world, a world that answers our inquiry and is alive in a way less like a thought than a mind. "The 'Darwin of electromagnetic lifeforms' (Mark Dery), Myers has always been singular in this ability to create vast spaces, indeed ecosystems, in which chance and intentional vision all play out in a dialogue where each enriches the other. The creation of several new and original electronic systems, which led to the compositions on this disc, further cements Myers’ reputation as the foremost explorer of 'Feedback Music' – and to those unfamiliar with this sound artist’s unique harmonization of science and magic, this beautifully realized recording serves as the best currently available introduction to the panoramic range that Myers commands. "Myers brings together worlds that have confounded generations of composers, visual artists, and philosophers – and in doing so, he plays scientist and shaman alike, presenting us with imaginary worlds that teem with life, personality, and a pure and deeply considered musicality. As a composer predominantly of acoustic chamber music, I marvel that whereas Myers’ work has strayed far from the world of string quartets and pianos in which I labor, his creations nevertheless manifest a profound display of the paramount principle of classical chamber music: everything that happens is motivated by something prior, an unbroken chain of brainstorms in conversation. If Myers at times has the sonic trappings of his influences Tod Dockstader and the Beatles, his musical rhetoric has the subtlety of classicists like Haydn and Mozart. Myers shapes chance into something not quite random, and vision into something just shy of intent... This collection comes across as grandly symphonic yet also meditative and intimate. "The first recording on this disc (implicate order) begins with gradually thickening or radiant bands of sound that linger, tremble, and falter while ultimately becoming the backdrop for more rhythmic pops and hisses, expanding on a kind of drum-machine texture. The dialogue between these two layers – with each destabilizing the other – ends with a hum reminiscent of the drone in Myers’ favorite 'Revolver' cut, Tomorrow Never Knows. "Effervescent drops, blips, and drizzles greet the ears on rigid and fluid bodies, sweeping across the harmonic series, fusing liquid gestures with relentless ticking, rising, gliding, and darting between both adroitly, before seeming to sink from view into the deep trenches of one’s inner ear. "astabilized begins with recognizable feedback without complication at first, achieving a kind of eerie home quality that could be my own amp or other device beginning to feed back. Before long, this fleeting, quotidian moment begins to stutter and argue with other layers sweeping in competing Doppler motion, taking unexpected turns before ending. "Another standout, arabic science is a meditative moment more exploratory than affirmative, singing out through liminal spaces in a kind of ecstatic glossolalia. the dynamics of particles, the poppiest offering on the disc, kicks off with an immediately catchy ostinato hook that soon croaks with quality of a vocal fry. "radial/axial is perhaps the work which most fully showcases Myers’ mastery and range, and as such it’s one of the most lushly symphonic selections as well. Exploring a range of timbres unsensed by most orchestrators, Myers shows us how unlikely sound sources can give voice to the symphonies within. It’s a fitting calling card for the entire album: daring, aurally eloquent, and epic in scope." This new Myers CD contains the most complete documentation of any Myers release, offering not only his biography and notes on the music, but also a new essay on the history of Feedback Music, photos of his custom designed, hand-built hardware, and Dan Visconti’s enthusiastic Introduction. The album was mastered by Grammy-winner Silas Brown.
  4. Artisan Electronic Instruments OTTAVA desktop analog performance synthesizer is a monophonic synthesizer with 25 knobs and 15 buttons to get at that sound fast, and all savable for instant recall. The synthesizer features: + Dual Analog Oscillators with PWM and Shape Modulation from Saw, through Blade and Triangle waveforms. + Additional Digital PWM Oscillator/Noise Source + Advanced CMOS Ring Modulator with 9 Wave Mangling Variations + Dual Sub Oscillators; -1 or -2 down, Smooth or Square Wave + 4 Pole Analog Low Pass Filter with Resonance control into self-oscialltion.. playable over 5 octaves. + Analog VCA + 4 rate modulatable LFOs with 8 waveforms and 4 modes of operation, including key-sync and one-shot + 4 DAHSDR (ADSR plus delay and hold) with Looping and 3 trigger modes. + 2 8-Step Modulation Sequencers. (special ADSR mode) + MIDI Clock sync on ADSRs and LFOs + 7 Modifier Functions allow combinations of Modulators and/or Keyboard inputs to create all new modulations. + 21 Modulation sources routable to 18 Destinations for complex sound generation possibilities. + 60 Patch Storage and Recall with 10 perfomance Quick Access buttons. + Analog Sound...Digital Stability.. All Through Hole parts
  5. Artisan Electronic Instruments OTTAVA desktop analog performance synthesizer is a monophonic synthesizer with 25 knobs and 15 buttons to get at that sound fast, and all savable for instant recall. View full synthesizer
  6. Seiko DS-202 Synthesizer

    Believe it or not, SEIKO. The same people known for making watches, joined the 1980s digital keyboard bandwagon with a rather interesting keyboard of their own. The digital synthesizer was a modular system of sorts that included the DS-202 Keyboard, the DS-310 Synthesizer control module and the DS-320 Sequencer for playing and composing your own tracks. What is interesting is SEIKO's system was built around a 16 harmonic additive synthesis engine. The user could set any of 16 levels for creating the waveforms / sounds that could be played on the keyboard. The synth also features two envelopes and and LFO for shaping and modulation of the sounds.
  7. Seiko DS-202 Synthesizer View full synthesizer
  8. The story of early electronic instruments, and the nearly forgotten Canadian music pioneer who created the first synthesizers. As told through interviews with three modern-day modular synth musicians. A musical documentary about modular synthesizers, and a tribute to Hugh Le Caine. View full movie
  9. The story of early electronic instruments, and the nearly forgotten Canadian music pioneer who created the first synthesizers. As told through interviews with three modern-day modular synth musicians. A musical documentary about modular synthesizers, and a tribute to Hugh Le Caine.
  10. Bursts of noise mixed with musicality.

     

  11. The Korg Minilogue blows me away! This guy is amazing.

     

  12. Yamaha RX11 Digital Rhythm Programmer

    The RX11 Digital Rhythm Programmer represents the crystallization of the most sophisticated electronic music technology, combining advanced microcomputer control with a top-quality digital PCM sound storage and reproduction system. With the RX11 you will be able to program virtually any type of rhythm pattern you required for your music, and since the instrument sounds are digitally recorded, they are indistinguishable from live percussion instruments.
  13. Your RX11 represents the crystallization of the most sophisticated electronic music technology, combining advanced microcomputer control with a top-quality digital PCM sound storage and reproduction system. With the RX11 you will be able to program virtually any type of rhythm pattern you required for your music, and since the instrument sounds are digitally recorded, they are indistinguishable from live percussion instruments. View full drum machine
  14. The Monowave was the brainchild of UK electronics designer, Paula Maddox. Paula has been designing and building synths for many years as well as releasing her own unique music realized on her impressive modular creations. Paula wanted to build a synth the roots of which lay in the PPG. Originally intended as a monophonic bass synth, the Monowave has uses beyond that. The Monowave is a wavetable synthesiser with 256 waves available for each of the two oscillators. Each oscillator also has a sub-oscillator. The filter is a copy of the Moog filter, there are separate envelope generators for the filter and amplifier, and a simple LFO. The panel is very 'retro' and 'traditional' with knobs for every function and a simple display. Internally, the circuitry is all analogue (except for the digital circuitry used in the oscillators)... no wimpy DSP thank you very much - this is a 'real' synth!! Paula has now released the MonoWave as GPL and has given me permission to release the PCB and a Component Kit for those that unfortunately missed the first, limited run. The new MonoWave (X) is a rebuild of Paula's popular MonoWave I and is being re-released with her permission. The new design reduces the original multi-pcb design down to 2 pcbs:- The Main board, which incorporates all of the original main board circuits, now also includes an onboard regulated power supply, PCB-mounted MIDI sockets (optional breakout connectors provided for those wishing panel-mounted sockets) and has had the multitude of ribbon-cable connectors reduced to 3 off 40-way cables. This board also now supports the ATMEGA16/ATMEGA32 in place of the original AT90S8515 and the ATtiny2313 in place of the AT90S1200. In addition, the front panel design incorporates a 2x16 LCD Module (the original MonoWave only had a 1x16 Module) allowing software developers to extend the user-interface. Technical Information: Envelope Generator's (VCF-EG & VCA-EG) These are the same as the design in Modulus 8, these are compact (needing only two chips) simple to use and fast. MIDI to CV Again Paula went for simplicity, with a little modification to the scaling , you could use it to generate a CV/GATE output for another 1V/Octave synthesizer. Two DACs are used, U403 holds the NOTE CV, U402 the Velocity CV and U406 has the GATE signal. When the main CPU writes the NOTE value, the MSB is also the gate value (note data on midi is only 7-bits wide). VCA1 & VCA2 These again are based on a Modulus edition. The VCA uses a CA3046, this is configured as a Gilbert Multiplier and gives a superb SNR! VCF No secrets here, its a Moog Ladder clone. Giving 24dB/Octave cut off slope. This was based on TomG's adaptation of it and includes some modifications by Paula. Wave Generator Ok, now we start showing some secrets. Essentially the wavegen is just an EPROM feeding a DAC, nothing more. The secret here is the set of NAND gates on the address lines. What these do is allow you to DROP the resoloution from 256-bytes per cycle to 64-bytes per cycle and hence give you a whole stack more harmonics and aliasing. Oscillator1 and Oscillator2 Some more secrets now, the oscillators. Again, nothing too radical, The main oscillator is the ATtiny2313 micro, This feeds a 4024 to allow octave selection. This, in turn, feeds a 4040, Q0-Q7 give the 8-bit address needed for the Waveform (Q0 is the clock into the 4040), Q8 gives us the sub oscillator. Also the waveform selection latches are shown in these drawings. These 16-bits are then fed to the wave-generator circuit. CPU Nothing too major here, you can see the main CPU, LCD interface, Interface to Buttons and also MIDI. The MIDI interface is fully MMA compliant. The LCD has been upgraded to a 2-line display. U203 is the latch used for reading the buttons (to see if they are pressed or not) as this PORT on the CPU is used for other things it needed to have an output enable, the NAND gate ensures that when you want to read it, it latches the data (positive going edge clock) and then enables the outputs (active low enable), simplifying the interface to the CPU. ADC's Here the ADC schematic is straight from the datasheet. The ADCs are self clocking and the CPU just reads values every so often from the ADCs internal latches. Power Supply The MonoWave(X) requires an external well regulated +18VDC supply.
  15. The Monowave was the brainchild of UK electronics designer, Paula Maddox. Paula has been designing and building synths for many years as well as releasing her own unique music realized on her impressive modular creations. View full synthesizer