A short history of electronic music: the instruments and innovators that defined a genre
Jean-Michel Jarre must have felt pretty alone in the 70s. While Emerson, Wakeman and Downs were playing synthesisers like be-cloaked keyboard wizards, and the ’League and Cabs were exploring the machines’ innards like scientists, Jarre just wanted to create pure synth music, with lush melodies, chords and memorable tunes; nothing too experimental, but nothing too noodly. He wanted to use early sequencing, and he wanted to be popular without the pop, and with the album Oxygene, he certainly got what he wished for.
This masterpiece recording, and the Oxygene single (part IV), were his introduction into the big league. Recorded with, among other classics, a VCS3, ARP 2600, Eminent 310 and Korg Mini Pops in Jarre’s kitchen(!) it stands up as one of the defining albums in electronic music, yet really exists in a sole category marked ‘Jarre’. There’s Vangelis’ and Wendy Carlos’ soundtracks, yes, and there’s popular synth music, but then there’s the enigmatic French composer stuck somewhere in between. Or, indeed, everywhere else.
He now straddles soundtracks and EDM (see his much later collaborations), he still has hit records, he can play to millions of people in ridiculously huge open-air concerts. He uses a ‘laser harp’ ferchristsake!
Yes Jean-Michel Jarre, with his adoption of every technology, old, new and possibly not even invented, and his ability to dabble in just about every electronic genre is, very probably, the ultimate synth musician. He is out of place in time, both physically and musically, but he certainly deserves his own chapter (or at the very least, this box for now) in the history of electronic music. Actually all music, come to that. A true synth music legend.
Source: https://www.musicradar.com/news/short-h ... onic-music
Théâtre Marigny, Paris - 2007
Symphony Hall, Birmingham - 2008
RAH, London - 2008
Wembley Arena, London - 2009
NIA, Birmingham - 2009
POP Bercy, Paris - 2010
NIA, Birmingham - 2010
O2 Arena, London - 2010
Zénith Aréna, Lille - 2010
Port Hercule, Monaco - 2011
TUI Arena, Hannover - 2011
Festival International de Carthage - 2013
Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham - 2016