Hereamin, Theramin, Everywheramin Min
August 12, 2005 8:48 AM   Subscribe

What do you call two thereminists in a room together? A convention. Well, about 50 thereminists gathered for the Ether Music 2005 Convention last week in Asheville, NC. But what’s a theremin, you ask? You can meet a theremin, marvel at it’s award-winning beauty (scroll down), hear one live, enjoy some theremin humor, buy a vintage theremin, or if that’s too pricey, build one or even enter to win your very own. (previously discussed here, here and here)
posted by grateful (22 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Wow, great post! You da theraman!
posted by redteam at 9:03 AM on August 12, 2005

Learn something new every day :D
posted by cleverusername at 9:26 AM on August 12, 2005

This is good. Thanks, grateful!
posted by .kobayashi. at 9:28 AM on August 12, 2005

Haha, this is where I live and we were just talking about theremins this morning, but I had no idea that this convention had taken place last week. The girl that I work with apparently lives with one of these guys, and I was wondering who the hell takes up the theremin. Learn something new everyday indeed.
posted by Who_Am_I at 11:02 AM on August 12, 2005

I snapped a cool pic of Angelo from Fishbone using a theramin. First time I'd ever seen one used in a live setting and it added a real cool element to the proceedings.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 11:53 AM on August 12, 2005

I spent last weekend with my nephew attempting to assemble a Theramin kit from these guys. Ahem. As with all my soldering projects, not a huge success, a little further electronic testing is needed. Anyone have any joy making their own Theramins? I'm sorely tempted to junk the kit and buy him an Etherwave.
posted by grahamwell at 12:06 PM on August 12, 2005

I play Theremin (though not well). For what it's worth, the presence of Lydia Kavina at the convention is the real draw. If you have any interest, I highly recommend this recording.
posted by QuietDesperation at 12:22 PM on August 12, 2005

Awesome post, grateful. I think theremins are fascinating. So eerie and beautiful.

(Keeping my fingers crossed on the contest. I want to win that baby.)
posted by LeeJay at 12:45 PM on August 12, 2005

I'm too young to have seen Led Zeppelin live, but I saw a tribute band a few years ago and the "Jimmy Page" guy was brilliant. He had a home-made theramin built from an indoor TV ariel (rabbit's ears if you know the local jargon). I had no idea what it was for until he ripped into the Dazed and Confused "instrumental" section...

That gig was also responsible for my continuous ringing in my ears...good times...
posted by bruzie at 12:57 PM on August 12, 2005

I am a geezer and as such have seen LZ live. Page on the theramin was a theatrical event. It was a glorious noise.

A theramin convention without a Jimmy Page workshop just wouldn't be worthwhile.
posted by Ber at 1:06 PM on August 12, 2005

The Theramones are a Madison, WI band who use the theremin, keytar and pocket bugle to play covers of Ramones songs. Every once in a while they'll toss in a King Crimson cover for variety.
posted by hellx at 1:14 PM on August 12, 2005

My interest began when I first heard of the sixties psychedelic band Lothar and the Hand People -- Lothar was the theremin.
posted by grateful at 1:28 PM on August 12, 2005

Grateful, is that where Mike Myers got his "Lothar of the Hill People"?
posted by Ber at 1:33 PM on August 12, 2005

I never saw the skit, but it wouldn't surprise me. Its just too close to be a coincidence.
posted by grateful at 1:58 PM on August 12, 2005

this is really great.
posted by larva at 5:32 PM on August 12, 2005

The Lothar skits were some inspired stupidity. Lothar hosted a tribal talk show. He and his "guests" often whined about never getting enough time as tribal leaders to "walk with women". The line that still cracks me up is "Lately Lothar has been taking long walks by himself".

Back to theremin, was there anyone in rock music other than Page and Angelo that used a theremin. I can't think of any.
posted by Ber at 7:50 PM on August 12, 2005

Asheville, NC is a cool city. And this is a very cool post.
posted by mediareport at 8:17 PM on August 12, 2005

Hmm - there are also the Lothars, who have four Theremins. Guess it goes with the name. By the way, there's a podcast called Spellbound that features Theremin music.
posted by QuietDesperation at 10:08 PM on August 12, 2005

I have seen theremins onstage being played by members of They Might Be Giants, Bela Fleck and the Flecktones, and Man Or Astro-Man? as well.
posted by Vidiot at 12:00 AM on August 13, 2005

And of course John Spencer and his Blues Explosion, as seen on the cover of their "Orange" album.
posted by stinkycheese at 7:22 AM on August 13, 2005

Elvis Costello tours with one.
posted by grateful at 12:28 PM on August 13, 2005

Probably the best theremin-usin' act I've seen is IQU, who actually get excellent control with it; on their new album, they do a cover of "Loving You" that's actually:
a) Good
b) Non-Ironic
which I didn't think was even possible. And the main instrument in that is the theremin. (That entire album is excellent, actually -- can't recommend it enough, but particularly for those interseted in thetheremin. And for those in the Seattle area; evefinitely see them live... they based outta here, and they pay rather frequently, actually. First saw them play a show with Kanda (who are also awesome, but quite different, sound-wise), and was blown away and picked up their album the next day... as for some reason they didn't have any to sell at the show.)

Also: some heartbreaking news about Bob Moog.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 12:45 PM on August 13, 2005

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