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The year was 1988, and this was the first track I wrote when I got my hands on some basic synth/sequencing and recording equipment. At the time, in my head it sounded incredible.

My first bedroom ‘setup’. So many buttons and sliders. No wonder I crave simplicity now.

Kids today have no idea how easy everything is starting in music production in 2020. It took me years to even know people that I could beg and borrow from and longer still to buy equipment of my own to form even the most rudimentary recording environment. Today you simply need a cheap Android phone and you immediately have access to more than I could have even dreamed of.

Back to 1988 when I borrowed a friend’s Dad’s Casio CZ-230S keyboard (a proper actual synthesizer of sorts) to go alongside my rubbish Casio MT100 toy keyboard, another friends Atari disk drive for my Atari 800XL, and yet another friend’s Fostex 4 track recorder which used Chrome cassette tapes on both sides for left/right left/right tracks.

This was my first effort at multi-tracking with a cassette tape, which was very exciting but quite limited and worrisome from what I remember. I think the Atari was using a very rudimentary sequencer package at the time which had to save to a 5.25 floppy disk.


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White Lightning

The wonderful CZ-230S. I worked this to death, despite the fact it wasn’t even mine.
The Casio MT100 – my Christmas present to myself in 1987. It had a ‘Graphic Equalizer’ Wooo! But it made weedy, pitiful noises.
Back in the old days I always had a cassette on my person with a tune or two at the ready. I can’t believe I entered a talent show on a ferry trip to Sweden miming to this track. What on Earth did people make of it. This Polaroid was taken by one of the crew at the time.

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