Roll Call! - 2008

Posted: 4/2/2008 7:00:20 PM

From: New York, NY

Joined: 2/13/2005

Hope you can try again.
Get one. Maybe get a Moog.
Just play it.
Don't worry about them.

You've been without a theremin long enough,
I can't imagine it. It's such a great thing, but you know that, you're still here.
Welcome back!
Posted: 4/4/2008 12:45:55 AM

From: Fresno, California USA

Joined: 3/26/2006

Out of consideration for my spouse and our cat, I started off with a pair of earphones plugged into the amplifier--so I can learn (I hope) without bothering anyone!

I also have an inexpensive CD player hooked up to the amp, so I can have accompaniment. Building my Theremax (the first theremin I have seen and heard "in the flesh"), and getting it working with the help of folks at Paia and TW took some time, then I was able to put off learning to play it even longer by translating Victor Estrada's method book--and now I am trying to develop the habit of practicing a bit after dinner. I have no education in musical theory, so must learn by doing. I am pursuing the theremin because I felt I needed a hobby, and figured this could keep me busy for a LOOOONG time! One of my childhood heroes was Dr. Hans Zarkhov (you may remember his sidekick, Flash Gordon), and it recently occurred to me that if Dr. Zarkhov were to play an instrument, it would almost surely be a theremin!

Posted: 4/4/2008 10:20:47 AM

From: Georgia

Joined: 4/4/2008

Hey, y'all.

I'm Theresa, I'm a pastor in the United Methodist Church currently serving as a music minister. I have part of a music degree and 30+ years of various types of music experience. I currently
do some arranging and composing (Sibelius) especially for my church work and my kids who play the violin and cello. My 14 year old (cellist) has already played with the ASO in a special project.

We have way too many musical instruments already (a complete stable (violin, viola, cello, bass), piano, trombone, sax, flute, 5 (or is it 6?) guitars, keyboards -- I've lost track...). My youngest found a video of someone playing the "Legend of Zelda" on the Theremin and I got a bunch of "I wants" immediately. Of course, I saw it and I wanted one too!

So we are going about this from two directions - I'm looking to trade in 3 guitars for a Moog Theremin (just haven't found the right one yet) and I am designing one (in a very organic fashion.) I believe it's very important to not only be able to play an instrument, but to be able to understand the theory behind the instrument.

I am posting diagrams of our discussion/design almost everyday on my website. I would love some feedback -- the purpose of the diagrams is to break down the theory behind the Theremin into easily digestible bites for the kids. It probably is leading into a science fair project for the two of them....

So please visit and give me your opinion.

Posted: 4/4/2008 11:55:51 AM

From: Saint Charles, MO

Joined: 4/3/2008

Hello everyone. I'm Dave, a computer musician, game developer, and Kemetic Orthodox priest. I'm very new to the theremin, having received an Etherwave Standard just yesterday.

A really excellent music teacher and my dad's small collection of Tomita and Wendy Carlos 8-tracks got me into all kinds of musical adventures from an early age. I used to play one of those electric organs with the plastic reeds and loud fan, recording it on a cheap cassette recorder. (I kind of miss that thing really...)

When I was a little older I started playing violin, and then convinced my parents I really needed a synthesizer. Or two, or three... you know how that goes! I played keyboards in the high school jazz band and did more experimental things, but once I was in college, I didn't make as much time to make music.

About 10 years ago I did a little soundtrack work for one of our games, using an awkward combination of early Cakewalk software, SoundFonts and some outboard gear. Some time afterward my sister introduced me to FruityLoops/FLStudio and VST plugins. From there on I got more serious, and have self-released a few albums. Most recently my music has been a dark ambient/industrial blend.

I also play hand percussion (djembe, ashiko, doumbek, and whatever I can beat on or shake). Not on a professional level, but I feel confident leading spontaneous drum circles and encouraging dancers. :)

Even with the drumming though, I've missed the expressive physical-to-musical translation than a live instrument provides. I'd been curious about the theremin, so last week when I was watching some YouTube videos and my wife mentioned she wanted one, I had to pounce on the opportunity. I just wonder how long it'll be before we find ourselves needing a second Etherwave? :)

Anyway, it's very clear to me now that human expressiveness is exactly what makes the theremin come to life. Until I got mine, I'd wondered why they don't have more synthesis options; now I realize it's like asking why a motorcycle doesn't have more wheels. :)
Posted: 4/4/2008 4:17:04 PM

From: Sammamish, Washington

Joined: 2/13/2005

Welcome revmommy & FallsAStar! (and everyone else I've missed so far this year) Always great to have new members. We're looking forward to getting to know you better and help you on your theremin journeys!
Posted: 4/4/2008 5:10:39 PM

From: Croxley Green, Hertfordshire, UK

Joined: 10/5/2005

Hi Theresa.

Ha ha. I was just in the process of posting a comment on your blog pointing you in the direction of Theremin World when your posting here came up on my RSS feed. (I subscribed to your blog a few days ago when it appeared on my radar screen.)

I really [i]love[/i] your preliminary design. Might I suggest that you place the bird at the top of a tall metal rod as a perch rather than embedding a javelin in the poor creature's head.

(Here ('s a link to those blog entries that mention the theremin.)

Also Hi Dave - I just added you on mySpace. Good sounds. I like.
Posted: 4/6/2008 10:20:41 PM

From: Georgia

Joined: 4/4/2008

Thanks, Gordon.

I'm going to put the Budgie on a perch... I want to find something nice and "Steampunk Gothic" to do it with. I do feel like I'm reinventing the wheel somewhat.

I liked your stuff on Myspace. Good thing.
Posted: 4/6/2008 10:51:15 PM

From: Richmond Hill, Georgia

Joined: 9/18/2005

Hey Theresa

I am a member of Richmond Hill United Methodist Church. I tried playing in the church's praise band, but it never really seemed appropriate for this type of music. I tend to prefer the traditional Methodist Hymnal selections.

Philip Neidlinger
Posted: 4/6/2008 11:13:21 PM

From: Georgia

Joined: 4/4/2008

This is so neat! I stumbled on your page the other day -- my husband and I examined (in detail) all you pics; figured out the two big coils are antenna coils and the three smaller ones were the actual oscillators. For this first project, I don't think I need to linearize the hand capacitance. But I think that project of yours is beautiful! Do the tubes glow nicely when you are playing?

For loud wailing guitars type contemporary worship -- no, I can't see the Theremin working. For contempletive contemporary -- I think it would work nicely. I would love to hear some really old sacred music on the Theremin - like plain chant.

We usually do Epworth-by-the-Sea end of July for Pastor's school. I would love to see your project.... =o)
Posted: 4/7/2008 12:14:20 AM

From: Kansas City MO

Joined: 10/24/2006

hi all
Buddy Craigg here.

I bought an E Standard kit so I could stain the wood instead of it being black in 2006.
I still am not any good at playing it.

I love cars, and work on them in my spare time for extra money.

I love guns, and buy them with my extra money.

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