Herbert Deutsch

Co-Inventor of Moog Synthesizer, Musician, Educator

So went downstairs, and downstairs, in the cellar of this little shop, there was a table and two tape recorders and the little keyboard and his basic amplifier—his basic oscillators. And he said, "Okay, where do we go from here?"
Herbert Deutsch on Bob Moog’s workshop

About the Innovator

Herbert Deutsch is a pioneer of synthesized music. As a long-time composer, music educator, and author, he has taught at Hofstra University since 1961. In 1964, Deutsch composed Jazz Images, a Worksong and Blues—the first piece of Moog synthesizer music, created on the prototype in The Henry Ford’s collections. He was also the first musician to use a Moog in a public performance, using the instrument during a jazz program at the Museum of Modern Art. Deutsch served as the Director of Marketing & Sales during the heyday of Moog Music (1979-1983), and was a consultant for the Roland Corporation and Jim Henson’s Muppets. 

Why He Innovates

When Deutsch (an experimental composer) first met Moog (an electrical engineer) and described the types of sounds he wanted to make, the pair realized that the instrument didn’t exist—so they worked as a team to create it. Their exchanges over whether to give their instrument a keyboard, its qualities of dynamics, attack, and decay—and one remarkable epiphany about a doorbell—coalesced to give the instrument form.