Harald Bode

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Hohner Multimonica, first released in 1940, designed by Harald Bode

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

Biography[edit]

Harald Bode was born in 1909 in Hamburg, Germany. At the age of 18 he lost his parents and started studying,[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]

The 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.

The 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 Friedrich Trautwein,[3] was specially commissioned by the Studio for Electronic Music of the Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR Studio in Cologne),[4] and used by the Elektronische Musik group throughout the 1950s.[model 3] (see Melochord at the WDR Studio in Cologne)

From 1950, Bode designed electronic organs for the Apparatewerk Bayern [de] (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, Bode was invited as a chief engineer of the Norlin/Moog Music[8] after Robert Moog left.

He died in New York in 1987.[2] Bode's influence upon electronic music has persisted long after his death, with a number of 21st century musicians referencing or sampling his work.

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]
  • Melodium (1938) monophonic touch-sensitive keyboard instrument developed with Oskar Vierling,[model 2] used in the film scores and "light" music[4]
  • Multimonica (1940, Hohner) dual manual electronic/acoustic hybrid keyboard instrument, consists of monophonic sawtooth wave oscillator (upper) and air-driven reed harmonium (lower)[model 4]
  • 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 [de] (AWB) in Germany,[4] Estey Organ Company in Brattleboro, Vermont, USA, and others:

During his time as an executive of the Wurlitzer Organ Co.:[4]

Frequency shifter, model 735 Mark III, designed and manufactured by Bode

As the products of Bode Sound Company:[8]

Notable users[edit]

The Melochord at the WDR Studio in Cologne was 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.[11] 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.[12][13][14]

Personal life[edit]

He was the father of cinematographer Ralf D. Bode,[15] and Peer Bode.[16]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Palov, Rebekkah (July 2011), "Harald Bode – A Short Biography", EContact!, Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC), 13 (4)
  2. ^ a b c "In Memoriam" (PDF), Journal of the Audio Engineering Society (JAES), 35 (9): 741, September 1987, 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. Friedrich 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, 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, archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-06-09, retrieved 2011-09-13 On the PDF version, draft typescript is available at the tail; also HTML version without draft is available in "here". Archived from the original on June 9, 2011. Retrieved 27 February 2021..
  7. ^ a b Bode, Harald (The Wurlitzer Company), "Sound Synthesizer Creates New Musical Effects" (PDF), 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. ^ a b c d e f g Harald's wonderful Instruments, Harald Bode News, 27 April 2010
  10. ^ 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
  11. ^ Kurtz, Michael (1992), Stockhausen: A Biography, translated by Toop, Richard, London and Boston: Faber and Faber, 1992, p. 62, ISBN 0-571-14323-7, (cloth) (pbk).
  12. ^ Stockhausen, Karlheinz (1964), "Komposition 1953 Nr. 2: Studie I, Analyse", in Dieter Schnebel (ed.), Texte 2, Cologne: Verlag M. DuMont Schauberg, pp. 23–36, here p. 23
  13. ^ Stockhausen, Karlheinz (1971), "Elektronische Musik: Brief von Douglas M. Davis (Antwort: geschrieben am 13.IX.1970)", in Dieter Schnebel (ed.), Texte 3, Cologne: Verlag M. DuMont Schauberg, pp. 341–347, here pp. 344–345
  14. ^ 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.
  15. ^ Finch, Jim. "eContact! 13.4 – Interview with Harald Bode by Jim Finch". Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC). Retrieved 2019-10-19.
  16. ^ "Peer Bode > Artists > Burchfield Penney Art Center". www.burchfieldpenney.org. Retrieved 2019-10-19.

Models[edit]

  1. ^ a b Rhea, Thomas L. (July 2011), "Harald Bode's Four-Voice Assignment Keyboard (1937)", EContact! (reprint ed.), Canadian Electroacoustic Community (CEC), 13 (4); 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. ^ Windler, Christian Oliver, Jörgensen Electronic Clavioline (monophonic portable tube synth keyboard with great electro noises)
  9. ^ Bode, Harald, Instruments by Harald Bode and The Bode Sound Co., Experimental Television Center
  10. ^ Bode Feedback Stabilizer MOD. 741XR (PDF) (Pamphlet). Bode Sound Co.

Photos[edit]

  1. ^ a b Warbo Formant Organ (photograph). 1937.
  2. ^ 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)
  3. ^ Levin, John. Estey Electronic Organ model AS-1, designed by Harald Bode (photograph). Estey Organ Museum, Brattleboro.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]