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1

Friday, April 6th 2012, 12:28am

When the Machines Rock...my introduction and questions...

INTRODUCTION:

Hello. My name is Chris Anderson. I live in far Western Kentucky (US). Born in 1968, I became musically aware in 1979 when I first heard Gary Numan's 'Cars'. I have been a staunch fan of his music ever since. I guess you could say my musical "influence" stems from the 80's, although I am a big Beatles fan, as well as Queen, Bluegrass (I dabble in the banjo), and lately Jazz, Zydeco, and Cajun tunes. Just got back from a Thomas Dolby concert in New Orleans, and I love his new style. It would seem my brother got the music gene, and has played professionally since the seventies. Even his son is involved in several support bands. Me, I started playing air-keyboards in the early 80's, and made the jump to steering wheel keyboards in about 1987, and consider myself a prodigy (I can pursuit drive and play with both hands :D ). Alas, my gift of the arts seems to lay in nature and celestial photography, not music.

I dabbled with some tiny/cheap synthesizers decades ago, but just didn't seem to have an ear for music. And, of course, I was pretty much just playing around. Banjo was easy, but I still felt like I had the mechanics down, but not the 'feel'.

RECENT EVENTS:

Well, I'm 44 now, have a special needs son that I am taking care of, and plan on retiring from a 20 year career with the State Police early next year in order to take care of him. My wife tragically died last November. In an effort to pass some time and start scratching things off my bucket list, I impulse-purchased a used Virus T1 61 key synth last week. It has yet to arrive. I bought some kind of "keyboards for dummies" book from Amazon, and have downloaded-to-read everything I can get on the model.

I have no aspirations for playing in a playing in a band, or recording, I'd just be happy being able to hammer out a few Numanesque tunes here in the living room. A hobby so to speak. I've watched a lot of Youtube vids of people playing His songs on various keyboards, and (I already knew this) it seems most of His songs can be played pretty much with one finger on each hand. :thumbsup:

What I want to do is make a 'study' of, say, Numan's The Pleasure Principle. That should keep me busy...

QUESTIONS:

Am I out of touch thinking I can just tinker and practice and figure this out? Or do I need basic lessons? I notice the keys seems to be pretty much two colors, and no numbers or letters attached to them, so "by the numbers" is out right :!:. Some sarcasm there.

I understand you can play the device through headphones, but what sort of Virus~PC interface am I looking for? I have a Win7 system that puts NASA to shame, but I am not sure how I can play the unit through my existing PC speaker/sub system. I am sure I will figure a lot of this out when it arrives, but thought I'd toss some of this out there. Do I need a special card, or just a cord into the mic jack? Someone said Audacity?

What other "toys" might I look forward to later on? I am simply dumb when it comes to understanding all this. Usually, I print reams and reams of info before I jump into a project, so this impulse buy is uncharacteristic. But with a ton of life insurance payout, it didn't hurt, and if I don't "get it" I can always sell it to a musician later on.

Well, that's my story. Thanks to all!

CG
www.pbase.com/darklightimagery

PS: How do you turn the T1 on? ;)

2

Saturday, April 7th 2012, 1:19am

Welcome aboard... theres a few Numan fans on here, and the Virus is very capable of the "Numan sound" theres a guy called "Matt Jessup" on You tube who does some great demos of Virus whilst playing Classic numan tracks, in his own and original style, He also created the patches for Numans Virus's for his Telekon Tour a couple of years ago... have a listen :thumbup:

Heres the Numan / Virus recreations.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ElBAYV-NoDw


Enjoy your MONSTER synth...

AtonyB

Professional

Posts: 729

Location: UK

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3

Saturday, April 7th 2012, 7:23pm

It was the pleasure principle tour he did some presets for.

You can also check out some tracks done by Tubeway Days on youtube - thats my Gary Numan tribute act ( www.youtube.com/antonybarton ).

The Virus is certainly the best synth for the job if you want to recreate the sounds of Numan - and I guess for most of his popular tracks the difficulty lies in getting the sound right, rather than playing the keys. Many times I have looked to fined other things to help widen the Numanesque sounds I can do, but every time I find the Virus can do it just as well or better.

Matt Jessup has a video on how to get the 'polymoog Vox Humana' sound on the virus so that might be a satisfying start - although you might want to get your head round the mod matrix and LFOs on the virus, first. Persist and you will succeed!

Most important of all... Have fun!

4

Sunday, April 8th 2012, 12:10pm

Thank you both! Muzikman, been all over YT, and that link I had missed. Beautiful. And I'm already a big Tubeway Days fan! CG