Think Of The Synthesizer As A Fly In A Matchbox!

Synthesis explained by Thomas Dolby with the help of Muppets      02/07/15

Think Of The Synthesizer As A Fly In A Matchbox!


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Ask a synth enthusiast to explain what synthesis is and you can sometimes end up with a rather convoluted and complicated answer. I know I am guilty of saying things like frequency modulation and watching as your friends look rather bemused...

This clip from the Jim Henson show "The Ghost of Faffner Hall" lets Thomas Dolby give an explanation of a synthesizer that even a child could understand. In fact the whole show was dedicated to educating children on music.

"I want you to imagine the fly is an oscillator, and this box is a filter."

Dolby starts to shake the box to represent the electrical current and then open the box to represent the opening and closing of the filter.

"The harder I shake the box, the higher the pitch!"

 

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