Song Of The Day 5/28/2016: The Carmets – “Blue Star”

Moog In Vogue – With Moog In Vogue Week coming to a close it's time for me to come out and admit something. Well, two things: (1) Yes, this week was entitled Moog In Vogue as part of ongoing unilateral attempts to once and for all force you through the magic of rhyme to finally pronounce the name "Moog" correctly. It's pronounced "moag," or "mohg" if you're a Germanophile. The confusion is obvious in that the double-o in "Moog" is the only such pair pronounced as "oh" in the history of verbal communication. People are getting better about it now. I'm no longer looked upon with skeptical pity when I'm pontificating at the public bar foot-rail. "It's Moog with an 'oh,' you rubes! And it's Kurzweil with a regular 'w,' not a 'v'! You're mixing it up with Kurt Weill! I know of which I speak! I'm not a monster! I will be atoned! I am victorious and I don't care how many packets of Sweet 'n' Low you pelt me with!" Look, I been in some rough places, okay?

And (2)... you'll never believe it, but I once owned a Moog myself. It's true. Well, it's kind of true. It was a Realistic Concertmate MG-1 Synthesizer, exactly as pictured above. Of course, "Realistic" was the brand name for Radio Shack, the rapidly devaluing franchise outlet that used to be your go-to joint for batteries and build-it-yourself rabbit ears, and now is basically only good for soldering equipment on the fly. They called their stuff "Realistic" because that's exactly what it was. Not "real." Not "real" in the sense that it was the ultimate tangible proof of your possessing something in solid form. But "realistic" in that it could pass off as "real" to someone who didn't know better. The Concertmate MG-1 was specifically put out under the explanatory name "Realistic Synthesizer by Moog Music." "Moog Music" kind of indicates to me that this might have been the pet project of one of Moog's junior marketing directors who stayed at the home office while his superiors went on tour with Kraftwerk.

I did not appreciate the Concertmate MG-1 when I had it, and it's my own damn Margaritaville fault. I'd been spoiled by the illustrious depth and lushness of Kurzweils, Oberheims, Prophets (I soooooo wanted a Prophet) and Junos that the electronic purity of the Concertmate was lost on me. It was also a monophonic synthesizer, which I wasn't about at all. I'd had ten years of full-fledged piano experience and I wouldn't accept the limitation that I could only play one note at a time. This was terrible projection on my part. If I'd held onto the Realistic Concertmate MG-1 just seven more years after I think I took it out to the pawn shop, I could have been a socially awkward waif in Olympia... but one with something that said Moog on it. That would have made me king of 4th Avenue, in a totally hierarchical way, of course. I wouldn't necessarily have been popular, but I could have been king. Well, jester. Well, meter man. I had no way of knowing how a proliferation of indie electronic duos (they're all duos) would come to enjoy the solid state purity of small Moogs like mine after the turn of the century. And this, among many other reasons, is why I only write about music now instead of exploit others' music for my own personal gain.

All right, let's get back to music played with instruments you could conceivably hurt yourself with. Enjoy it while you can.

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