Joel Chadabe

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Joel Chadabe (December 12, 1938 – May 2, 2021)[1] was an American composer, author, and internationally recognized pioneer in the development of interactive music systems.[2][3][4][5][6][7][8] He earned a BA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, then earned his MM at Yale while studying under Elliott Carter.[3] His students include Liz Phillips, Richard Lainhart, and David A. Jaffe. He designed the CEMS, built by Robert Moog, in 1967. He was the president of Intelligent Music, "one of the several companies that distribute software and hardware for interactive composing,"[9] from 1983 to 1994.[3] The Electronic Music Foundation was founded in 1994 by Chadabe.[10] Chadabe was the curator at New York sound gallery Engine 27 in 2000–01.[11] Chadabe was given the SEAMUS Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007. In a 2013 interview with Peter Shea, Chadabe discussed a variety of topics, ranging from the history of electronic music to his own work processes.[12]

Early life[edit]

Chadabe was born December 12, 1938 in Bronx, NY, the son of Solon Chadabe, a lawyer, and Sylvia (née Cohen) Chadabe, a homemaker. Joel attended grade school at the Bentley School and then University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He studied music in college and graduated in 1959, despite his parents hoping that he would become a lawyer. Chadabe then continued his education at Yale University, studying with the composer Elliott Carter and completing a Master's degree in music (M.M.) in 1962. [13]

Computer music and career[edit]

Upon completing his education at Yale, Chadabe and Carter traveled to Italy, where Chadabe continued his studies.[13] Chadabe was interested in jazz and opera, but was offered a job opportunity at the State University of New York at Albany (SUNY Albany) to direct its electronic music studio.[13]


  • Chadabe, Joel (1997). Electric Sound: The Past and Promise of Electronic Music. ISBN 978-0-13-303231-4.
  • Chadabe, Joel (1975). "The Voltage-controlled Synthesizer", The Development and Practice of Electronic Music (Jon H. Appleton and Ronald Perera, eds.). ISBN 978-0-13-207605-0.
  • Joel Chadabe (2005). "iFiddle Therefore I Am..." ACO. Retrieved October 14, 2006.



  1. ^ Birgé, Jean-Jacques. "Joel Chadabe, la musique électronique en deuil". Retrieved May 30, 2021.
  2. ^ Chadabe, Joel and Eisenman, David (2007). Musicworks, Issues 97-99, p.43. Music Gallery.
  3. ^ a b c Joel Chadabe bio,
  4. ^ "Composer Profiles: Joel Chadabe",
  5. ^ "Activities as Music",
  6. ^ "Music Technology: People: Joel Chadabe", NYU Steinhardt.
  7. ^ "Lovely Artist: Biography: Joel Chadabe",
  8. ^ "Joel Chadabe",
  9. ^ Zicarrelli 1987 cited in Roads, Curtis (1992). The Music Machine, p.65. ISBN 978-0-262-68078-3.
  10. ^ "EMF History Archived 2008-04-20 at the Wayback Machine",
  11. ^ Tommasini, Anthony (19 September 2000). "Chirps, Crackles and Pops at an Exhibition". The New York Times. Retrieved May 30, 2021.
  12. ^ "3/1/13 Joel Chadabe | Institute for Advanced Study". Archived from the original on 2013-12-16. Retrieved 2013-04-28.
  13. ^ a b c Vadukul, Alex (2021-05-25). "Joel Chadabe, Explorer of Electronic Music's Frontier, Dies at 82". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-05-27.

External links[edit]