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Theremin Crazy
June 21, 2007 9:46 PM   Subscribe

Two words: Hip Hop and Theremin. Turns out the weird, spooky sci-fi noise machine plays all sorts of good music: Video Killed the Radio Star, The Legend of Zelda and sometimes, in the right hands, it speaks of a man's love of White Castle.
posted by generic230 (27 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

 
Not sure if I would categorize Gnarls Barkley as Hip Hop, but a cool post nonetheless.
posted by ChestnutMonkey at 9:56 PM on June 21, 2007


Isn't "hip hop" two... oh, never mind.
posted by louche mustachio at 10:11 PM on June 21, 2007


One of my favorite unique artists, "The Voodoo Organist", uses a theremin in his music. It is awesome.
posted by daq at 10:11 PM on June 21, 2007


That was WAY cool, thanks heaps
posted by mattoxic at 10:37 PM on June 21, 2007


That Gnarls Barkley cover blew my mind. I think that's crazy.
posted by parallax7d at 10:49 PM on June 21, 2007 [1 favorite]


The Video Killed the Radio Star one is pretty terrible, though.

I always thought that people playing theremin looked like the people in the Happy Hands club from Napoleon Dynamite. I mean that as no offense to the hearing impaired.
posted by rossination at 11:15 PM on June 21, 2007


Is the theremin going to make Parkinson symptoms sexy? I don't know, but I predict the glass armonica making a comeback.
posted by BrotherCaine at 11:24 PM on June 21, 2007


I loved the ending to "Crazy" where you watch him Google the Wikipedia article for theremin.
posted by dhartung at 11:51 PM on June 21, 2007


I have a theremin sitting around that while I was idly curious about, I didn't know the finer techniques of how they are supposed to be played. Seeing people play it on video was very useful - I should have hit youtube sooner. Thanks!
posted by -harlequin- at 1:02 AM on June 22, 2007


Oh man, you have made me so happy to be a theremin player.
posted by the dief at 3:56 AM on June 22, 2007


Awesome, being a slightly psychotic Midsomer Murders fan, I've been harboring a desire to acquire a theremin for some time.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 4:26 AM on June 22, 2007


I don't know about teh hip-hop, but the most amazing theremin playing I have ever seen was by Pamela Kurstin with Bela Fleck's band a few years ago.

Many with interest in the theremin probably already know about this, but in case not, there's this interesting documentary, with comments by Robert Moog, Brian Wilson, and Todd Rundgren amidst the biographical material on Theremin.
posted by aught at 6:11 AM on June 22, 2007 [1 favorite]


Pamelia Kurstin is definitely my favourite thereminist. She's so awesome that her website is uglier than her myspace page!
posted by plant at 6:14 AM on June 22, 2007


One of my favorite unique artists, "The Voodoo Organist", uses a theremin in his music. It is awesome.

Awesome.. I've seen the Voodoo Organist three times now. Very cool. Anyone unfamiliar with him I suggest everyone check it out (youtube.. Theremin use at 1:30ish)
posted by jlowen at 7:10 AM on June 22, 2007


The entertaining adventures of one thereminist as he's seduced by Hollywood and Slyders.
posted by Jon B at 8:01 AM on June 22, 2007 [1 favorite]


I am a big fan of Pamelia Kurstin, a theremin virtuoso and friend of Bob Moog.

When you listen to her music, realize that it's all theremin. She uses looping pedals to add the layers you hear.
posted by vishnubob at 8:29 AM on June 22, 2007


Project : Pimento uses the theremin in their crazy hepcat lounge music. Including their version of the theme to Star Trek, complete with vocals!
posted by Midnight Creeper at 8:36 AM on June 22, 2007


The Video Killed the Radio Star one is pretty terrible, though.

Nonsense. Flubs aside, the only thing cooler than playing VKTRS on theremin is playing VKTRS on theremin while dressed as an old-style Cylon warrior.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:33 AM on June 22, 2007


Barney the Theremin Wizard. "Sounds like: Throbbing Gristle, early Psychic TV, a bag of drowning cats."
posted by eegphalanges at 10:33 AM on June 22, 2007


ChestnutMonkey, rapping does not equal hip hop. Turntableism and mic control are two of the four elements of hip hop, both evident in the work of Gnarles Barkley. Add to that Cee-lo's Goody-Mob origins and I think its safe to call it hip hop.
posted by subtle_squid at 12:08 PM on June 22, 2007


Wow, Pamelia Kurstin is awesome, thanks for the liinks.
posted by BrotherCaine at 1:42 PM on June 22, 2007


I'm confused. Those videos look like some guy is just shaking his hands in the air over some box. Is there an actual device here that's doing something?
posted by Target Practice at 1:43 PM on June 22, 2007


Target Practice, watch the beginning of this video, or read up on how a theremin works at Thereminworld.
posted by Jon B at 1:57 PM on June 22, 2007


I was wondering if this would ever show up on MeFi. Randy (the theremin player from the the Crazy and Zelda videos) is an old college roommate and close friend of mine. He's actually a classically trained bassoonist, so when he decided to take up the theremin, I was a bit... surprised. He's pretty dedicated, however, and it shows.
posted by jal0021 at 5:11 PM on June 22, 2007


I'd never heard of a theremin before. Very cool. Especially liked the Legend of Zelda one.

...And in the Video Killed the Radio Star, doesn't the part where it's doing "video" sound like it's saying "internet"? (It doesn't hurt that I've heard the "Internet killed the video star" one, I'm sure....)
posted by Many bubbles at 10:05 PM on June 22, 2007


Crazy Horses.
posted by MrMustard at 11:51 PM on June 24, 2007


I've always wanted to hear the teacher from Peanuts sing.

That "Crazy" video is incredible. I thought the Theremin was a one-trick pony (one really cool trick, though) until now.
posted by redteam at 1:09 AM on June 25, 2007


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