Harald Bode

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Hohner Multimonica (first released in 1940 / manufactured in 1953 as version II). Designed by Harald Bode.

Harald Bode (October 19, 1909 – January 15, 1987) was a German engineer and pioneer in the development of electronic music instruments.

Biography[edit]

He was born in 1909 in Hamburg, F.R.G.. At the age of 18 he lost his parents and started study,[1] and graduated from the University of Hamburg in 1934.[2] In 1935, he began his pioneering work in the field of electronic musical instruments, and with funding support provided by Christian Warnke, his earliest work was completed in 1937.[1]

Warbo Formant Organ (1937),[model 1][photo 1] an archetype of today's polyphonic synthesizer, was a four voice key-assignment keyboard with two formant filters and dynamic envelope controller. Eventually it went into commercial production by a factory in Dachau,[model 2] and it became one of the earliest polyphonic synthesizer products, along with Novachord (1939) by Hammond.

Melochord (1947–1949) developed by Bode was extensively used by Werner Meyer-Eppler in early days of the electronic studio at Bonn University.[model 3] Then in 1953 a Melochord, along with Monochord by Freidrich Trautwein,[3] was specially commissioned by the Studio for Electronic Music of the Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR Studio in Cologne, West German Broadcasting Corporation),[4] and used by the Elektronische Musik group throughout the 1950s.[model 3] (See #Melochord at the WDR Studio in Cologne for details)

From 1950, Bode designed electronic organs for the Apparatewerk Bayern (AWB) in Germany and the Estey Organ Company in the United States. In 1954, Bode immigrated to the United States as a chief engineer (later vice-president) of Estey Organ,[4] and resumed his research at several companies and as a contractor of German companies.

In 1959-1960, Bode developed modular synthesizer and sound processor, and in 1961, he wrote a paper exploring the advantages of newly emerging transistor technology over older vacuum tube devices;[5][6][7] also he served as AES session chairman on music and electronic for the fall conventions in 1962 and 1964;[2] after then, his ideas were adopted by Robert Moog, Donald Buchla and others.

After retiring from the chief engineer of Bell Aerospace[4] in 1974, he composed TV-advertising spots and gave live concerts. Also in 1977, Harald was invited as a chief engineer of the Norlin/Moog Music[8] after Robert Moog left.

He died in New York, New York, United States in 1987.[2]

Andrew Deutsch, James Fei, Aaron Miller, Robin Rimbaud (aka Scanner), Steina Vasulka and Stephen Vitiello have collaborated with Bode posthumously.[9]

Accomplishments[edit]

Theory, circuits and devices to the sound production and sound figuration. Development and building of monophonic and polyphonic electronic organs/synthesizers and the sound processors:

  • Warbo Formant Organ (1937) one of the first key-assignment polyphonic synthesizer with formant filters and dynamic envelope shaping, designed and built by Bode with the funding support provided by Christian Warnke. (Note: "Warbo" is acronym of Warnke-Bode) [model 1][photo 1][model 2]
  • Melochord (1947–1949) 37-key monophonic keyboard with dynamic envelope wave shaping, volume pedal controller, and transpose switches to cover seven octaves. Later a second keyboard was added to control the timbre.[model 2][model 3]

For the Apparatewerk Bayern (AWB) in Germany,[4] Estey Organ Company in Brattleboro, Vermont, USA, and others:

  • Bode Organ (1951), later known as Estey Electronic Organ, based on Polychord III [4][model 2]

During he was an executive of Wurlitzer Organ Co.:[4]

Frequency Shifter Model 735 Mark III. Designed and manufactured by Harald Bode.

As the products of Bode Sound Company:[8]

Note that above three products were also licensed to Moog Music as a part of the Moog Synthesizer.[model 2]

Notable users[edit]

Melochord at the WDR Studio in Cologne

The Melochord at the WDR Studio in Cologne have been used by:

But in the case of Karlheinz Stockhausen, a student of Meyer-Eppler at the University of Bonn in 1954–56, his only use of the melochord was in a failed experiment with a ring modulator.[12] After this, he chose to disregard such instruments in favor of sine-wave generators, which he used in producing Studie I (1953) and Studie II (1954). This was also true for the two works by Karel Goeyvaerts produced there, and for Seismogramme (1954) by Henri Pousseur.[13][14][15]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Palov, Rebekkah, "Harald Bode — A Short Biography", eContact! (Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC)) 13 (4 (July 2011)) 
  2. ^ a b c "In Memoriam", Journal of the Audio Engineering Society (JAES) 35 (9), September 1987: 741, retrieved 2007-07-18 
  3. ^ "The Monochord (1948)", 120 Years of Electronic Music, archived from the original on 2012-04-02 
        Monochord, a modified Concert Trautonium, was commissioned from Dr. Freidrich Trautwein by the Studio for Electronic of WDR, Köln.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i Rhea, Tom (May 2004), "Harald Bode", Video History Project (Experimental Television Center), archived from the original on 2011-07-19  (also broken format page remains in here)
  5. ^ a b Bode, Harald (1961), "European Electronic Music Instrument Design", Journal of the Audio Engineering Society (JAES) ix (1961): 267 
  6. ^ a b Bode, Harald (Bode Sound Co.) (September 1984), "History of Electronic Sound Modification", Journal of the Audio Engineering Society (JAES) 32 (10): 730–739  (draft typescript is available at the tail of PDF version. HTML version without draft is also available in here at the Wayback Machine (archived June 9, 2011))
  7. ^ a b Bode, Harald (The Wurlitzer Company), "Sound Synthesizer Creates New Musical Effects", Electronics (December 1, 1961) 
  8. ^ a b "Harold Bode's biography", 120 years of Electronic Music, archived from the original on 2012-04-02 
  9. ^ Harald Bode, Carrier Band, Andrew Deutsch, James Fei, Aaron Miller, Scanner, Steina Vasulka, Stephen Vitiello
  10. ^ a b c d e f g Harald's wonderful Instruments, Harald Bode News, 27 April 2010 
  11. ^ Morawska-Büngeler, Marietta, Schwingende Elektronen: Eine Dokumentation über das Studio für Elektronische Musik des Westdeutschen Rundfunks in Köln, 1951–1986, Cologne-Rodenkirchen: P. J. Tonger Musikverlag, 1988, p. 13 
  12. ^ Kurtz, Michael; (translated by Richard Toop), Stockhausen: A Biography, London and Boston: Faber and Faber, 1992, p. 62, ISBN 0-571-14323-7 (cloth) ISBN 0-571-17146-X (pbk). 
  13. ^ Stockhausen, Karlheinz, "Komposition 1953 Nr. 2: Studie I, Analyse", in his (edited by Dieter Schnebel), Texte 2, Cologne: Verlag M. DuMont Schauberg, 1964, p. 23–36, here p. 23 
  14. ^ Stockhausen, Karlheinz, "Elektronische Musik: Brief von Douglas M. Davis (Antwort: geschrieben am 13.IX.1970)", in his (edited by Dieter Schnebel), Texte 3, Cologne: Verlag M. DuMont Schauberg, 1971, p. 341–47, here pp. 344–45 
  15. ^ Ekbert Faas, "Interview with Karlheinz Stockhausen Held August 11, 1976", Interface 6 (1977): pp. 187–204; reprinted in Feedback Papers 16 (August 1978): pp. 23–40. here p. 191 and p. 27, respectively.

Models[edit]

  1. ^ a b Rhea, Thomas L., "Harald Bode’s Four-Voice Assignment Keyboard (1937)", eContact! (reprint ed.) (Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC)) 13 (4 (July 2011))  Originally published as Rhea, Tom, "Electronic Perspectives", Contemporary Keyboard (December 1979): 89 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "The 'Warbo Formant Orgel' (1937), The 'Melodium' (1938), The 'Melochord' (1947-9), and 'Bode Sound Co' (1963-)", 120 years of Electronic Music, archived from the original on 2012-04-02 
  3. ^ a b c d e "The "Melochord" (1947–9)", The Keyboardmuseum Online, archived from the original on 2007-11-14  (description and history)
  4. ^ "The Multimonica (1940)", 120 Years of Electronic Music, archived from the original on 2012-07-24 
  5. ^ "The Tuttivox (1946)", 120 Years of Electronic Music, archived from the original on 2012-04-02  (Note: year in title may be incorrect)
  6. ^ Windler, Christian Oliver, Jörgensen Electronic Tuttivox  (antique portable electron tube organ)
  7. ^ "The Clavioline (1947) & Combichord (1953)", 120 Years of Electronic Music, archived from the original on 2012-04-02 
  8. ^ Bode (6 octave) Clavioline (photograph). Clavioline.com. Archived from the original on 2006-08-21. 
        (photographs of Bode Clavioline and Bode Melochord with Harald Bode)
  9. ^ Windler, Christian Oliver, Jörgensen Electronic Clavioline  (monophonic portable tube synth keyboard with great electro noises)
  10. ^ Levin, John. Estey Electronic Organ model AS-1, designed by Harald Bode (photograph). Estey Organ Museum, Brattleboro. 
  11. ^ Bode, Harald, Instruments by Harald Bode and The Bode Sound Co., Experimental Television Center 
  12. ^ Bode Feedback Stabilizer MOD. 741XR (Pamphlet). Bode Sound Co. 

Photographs[edit]

  1. ^ a b Warbo Formant Organ (photograph). 1937. 

References[edit]

  • "Harald Bode", eContact! (Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC)) 13 (4), July 2011 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]