Detroit house tastemaker, educator and sound designer Mike Huckaby is an artist whose talent stands amidst a depth of technical prowess and knowledge of the highest level. What’s more, his fervent desire to share this knowledge is a huge part of the core values he holds when it comes to being part of the musical community of the Motor City. While he both is an in demand DJ and producer around the globe he is still very much centred in the classroom developing the next waves of talent in his home town, having nurtured the likes of Kyle Hall and inspired kids as young as 9 to start creating beats of their own.
After all, the city has given Huckaby so much himself, being resident there for twenty years no artist could fail but to soak up the rich musical heritage laid down from techno innovators The Bellville Three (Derrick May, Kevin Saunderson & Juan Atkins of course) and the Motown spirit that went before the electronic age. Then there’s his deep house peers Delano Smith, Norm Talley, Rick Wade and Rick Whilite who all have been defending the sound for as long as Huckaby himself whose production of sublime house and techno music can be heard on his labels, Deep Transportation and S Y N T H.
Before this living legend lands in Farringdon on Saturday as part of a line-up that gravitates towards the outer edges of our expectation with Ben Klock and Craig Richards also in Room One - we asked the generously minded artist to share with us an object that's at the top of his 'Most Wanted' list and with the expert detail we expected, he's picked out the Stromberg synthesizer by Waldorf as his topic for discussion and fetishization on the blog today.
Mike Huckaby's Most Wanted: The Waldorf Stromberg Synthesizer
One synthesizer that I've always wanted was the Stromberg synthesizer by Waldorf. Unfortunately, this synthesizer never materialized, or made it to production. It was showcased at the NAMM show in Anaheim California 3-4 years ago, and caused quite a large buzz for Waldorf synthesizer fans. The Stromberg was to be the flagship of Waldorf synthesizers which would include all of their synthesis methods employed from their legacy synthesizers such as the PPG, Waldorf Wave, and several other Waldorf Synthesizers currently unavailable. This would have been a modern day dream for Waldorf fans. Sadly to say, this synthesizer never manifested itself, and plans for its production seem to be aborted.
I've been a Waldorf synthesizer fan since 1997. 1997 was the year in which I purchased my first Waldorf synthesizer, the Waldorf wave. Since then, I have bought or acquired several other Waldorf synthesizers such as the Waldorf Blofeld, and the Waldorf rocket monophonic synthesizer. I have learned a lot about synthesis and sound programming by using Waldorf synthesizers. Each has a reciprocal relationship to learning synthesis concerning other Waldorf synthesizers.
What is unclear concerning one Waldorf synthesizer is often made clear on another Waldorf synth. Waldorf's rocket synthesizer really drives this factor home by having a very limited amount of parameters available to program sounds. This has forced me to learn the dedicated function of a desired parameter or function. This has caused me to have a deeper understanding of programming more complicated Waldorf Synthesizer such as the Waldorf wave synthesizer.
This reciprocal relationship simply works for me. It has helped me create an entire 12 inch which only uses the Waldorf Wave Synthesizer for each track on the 12 and limited edition sample CD entitled, "My life with the wave."
I am optimistic that this synthesizer will manifest itself some day and make it into production. My Waldorf wave is over 10 years old now, and is showing some signs of wear and tear. The Stromberg synthesizer will be a good addition to my studio based on its features.
The Nave synthesizer, which models the Waldorf Wave as an I pad application has also been announced this year. This will simply have to do for hungry Waldorf wave and Stromberg fans, I suppose.
So this is whats buzzing on Mike Huckaby's most wanted gear list.
Don't miss Mike Huckaby in Room One on 8th June. For more info visit our event listings.