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Mr. Rick Wakeman on keyboards ... and various other concerns

Whether taking all mankind close to the edge with his keyboard contributions to every punk's favorite prog-rock band Yes, or going it solo (in fully sequined gown) with all Six Wives of Henry VIII all the way to the center of the earth, or perhaps with figure skating Knights of the Round Table, or composing the score for Ken Russell's Liztomania (and "acting" in it), or doing definitive session work for the likes of David Bowie, Black Sabbath, etc, or candidly singing the praises of Christianity and/or Freemasonry ... [more inside]
posted by philip-random on Dec 21, 2013 - 34 comments

Iterating on the keyboard

Jesse Vincent has spent some time thinking about, designing, and building keyboards.
posted by Jpfed on Dec 12, 2013 - 18 comments

George Duke has died

Keyboard legend George Duke, known for his work with Frank Zappa, Billy Cobham, and Stanley Clarke, as well as for many solo projects, has died.
posted by thelonius on Aug 7, 2013 - 22 comments

You've got an old computer, your're crafty, and you spent way too much time watching "Transformers" as a kid.

Suppose you’ve got an old computer around, just taking up space, and your initial attempts at finding alternate uses for it have not been successful. But you know perfectly well that, according to this super scientific pie graph, there must be better recycling ideas out there on the net. Let’s have a look at some of them, shall we? [more inside]
posted by orange swan on Oct 22, 2012 - 19 comments

Thank you, Mr. Bemer

The Esc key was born in 1960, when an I.B.M. programmer named Bob Bemer was trying to solve a Tower of Babel problem: computers from different manufacturers communicated in a variety of codes. Bemer invented the ESC key as way for programmers to switch from one kind of code to another.
posted by TangerineGurl on Oct 6, 2012 - 95 comments

Engineering Gloriousness

To the aficianado, a clicky keyboard is the only keyboard. For PC users, nothing is better than an IBM Model M. For Apple lovers, it never got better than the Apple Extended Keyboard II. [more inside]
posted by whimsicalnymph on May 2, 2011 - 115 comments

Moog-y Christmas

Do you like musical instruments with lots of keyboards? And lots and lots of dials? Then you may like 36 15 MOOG: Stuff with Moog and/or 60's and 70's vintage synths in it. (related Ask MeFi) [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Dec 24, 2009 - 14 comments

Long live the the Village Green - and the Mellotron

The Mellotron features prominently on the 1968 album, The Kinks Are The Village Green Preservation Society, more commonly referred to as The Village Green Preservation Society. The weird, eerie quality of this electronic keyboard, which uses pre-recorded tapes of individual sounds such as strings and woodwind instruments, worked well with singer/songwriter Ray Davies' nostalgic, backwards looking sensibility. [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jan 16, 2009 - 26 comments

The Aurora is Rising

Keyboardist Danny Federici, founding member of Bruce Springsteen's E-Street Band, has died.
posted by digaman on Apr 17, 2008 - 44 comments

Keyboards Back from the Dead

Dead musical instruments... brought back to life by YouTube? Check out this mellotron demo film, a rare trautonium keyboard in some guy's garage, trautonium music by composer Oskar Sala, an original Ondes Martenot, a documentary on the telharmonium (parts 1, 2, and 3), and the Sonovox (used to funny but not-suitable-for-work effect in this parody of Sparky's Magic Piano). Meanwhile, avant-gardists have revived the art of prepared piano, but more mainstream acts such as Tori Amos and Ferrante & Teicher have also experimented with it. Last but not least, another performer of prepared piano is Margaret Leng Tan, but I think she should get more accolades as the best virtuoso of the toy piano since Schroeder from Peanuts.
posted by jonp72 on Jan 31, 2008 - 14 comments

TYPE HARD OR GO HOME

Some people care about their keyboards. The Northgate OmniKey (now resurrected) was once legendary. There are those who mourn the passing of the space cadet keyboard and its successors, and those who campaign for its revival. The late, lamented (though not by everyone) Apple Extended Keyboard was finally recreated.

But, for the purist, there is only one true keyboard, the best ever made: the IBM Model M. [more inside]
posted by enn on Nov 3, 2007 - 124 comments

The Sancho Plan

The Sancho Plan "create live audiovisual performances and installations for your listening and viewing pleasure." Spacequatica, recently performed at Martyn Ware's Future of Sound event, is an intriguing mix of live sound and animations triggered by electronic drums -- worth a few minutes on a Friday.
posted by diastematic on Jun 8, 2007 - 5 comments

The Mellotron

You may have never heard of it, but you've damn near certain heard it. The Mellotron (FortuneCity link) is a keyboard instrument; each of its keys triggers a tape with a pre-recorded instrument on it. It was effectively the world's first sample player. [more inside]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Sep 7, 2006 - 38 comments

..and that's a good thing.

The Top Ten Weirdest Keyboards
posted by Falconetti on Apr 4, 2006 - 24 comments

Get bent...

"Circuit bending is the electronic art of the implementation of the creative audio short-circuit. This renegade path of electrons represents a catalytic force capable of exploding new experimental musical forms forward at a velocity previously unknown. Anyone at all can do it; no prior knowledge of electronics is needed." - Reed Ghazala. More proselytizing from Ghazala, and a LiveJournal for up-to-the-minute advice, feedback and opinions.
posted by jon_kill on Jan 28, 2004 - 20 comments

Keyless Keyboard

A keyless keyboard designed to reduce RSI and other typing related injuries - sounds interesting, but slow, and of course useless for gaming. Bit pricey as well.
posted by Orange Goblin on Jul 23, 2003 - 14 comments

What lies beneath. Confirming what you probably already knew, "as we juggle eating, drinking and working at our work stations, the tight shadowy crevices between our keyboard become the computer equivalent of a black hole, sucking in pizza toppings, contact lenses, paper clips, the odd insect...". Germ freakery or a genuine hygiene concern?
posted by netsirk on Sep 30, 2002 - 43 comments

An astonishingly obvious advance in interface design

An astonishingly obvious advance in interface design Your mobile phone's keyboard has been rendered obsolete by this inspired rethinking of buttons and the spaces between them. The manifacturer's home page is here
posted by hmgovt on May 20, 2002 - 40 comments

I've been using a folding, portable keyboard with my Visor for about a year now. Very handy. On Monday, Siemens unveiled an even more portable one at CeBIT. (My first post. Hope it's appropriate.)
posted by dobbs on Mar 22, 2002 - 32 comments

Who needs 204 keys?

Who needs 204 keys? I know I do. Damned shift keys. [via the big H.]
posted by jcterminal on Aug 22, 2001 - 19 comments

Where's the dubya?

Where's the dubya? Shenanigans by departing whitehouse staffers.
posted by ritualdevice on Jan 23, 2001 - 18 comments

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