RIP Don Buchla

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  • The synthesizer pioneer has died at age 79.
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  • Don Buchla has died. The American engineer was an important figure in the history of modular synthesis. His first was the Buchla Series 100, a modular synthesizer commissioned by Morton Subotnick and Ramon Sender, completed in 1963. He designed new synthesizers in the Buchla series well into the '80s, and also released a smaller, portable all-in-one modular synth called the Buchla Music Easel in 1972. After years spent making MIDI controllers, in the mid-2000s, Buchla returned to making modular synthesizers with the 200e. His synthesizers found favour with all kinds of artists, from synth music pioneers like Suzanne Ciani through to modern practitioners such as Alessandro Cortini and Donnacha Costello. There's no word on the cause of death yet. The news first spread via Twitter, with artists like Chris Carter, Andreas Tilliander and The Bug paying tribute.