My first job in the music industry was working at Sequential Circuits in the 1980s. The recent passing of Sequential’s founder Dave Smith has me nostalgic for the opportunities I didn’t realize at the time he was giving me. I share some of those memories in this month’s main article.

I’m also in between a pair of performances: last week (June 24) I played in quad as part of the Currents New Media Festival in Santa Fe, and this coming weekend (July 2) I’m playing as part of the next installment of SynthaCider in the Denver area. Plus, I released a performance from earlier this year on Bandcamp. Needless to say, I’ve been a bit preoccupied by those – but I still managed to share some tips from the trenches, and do an online interview (with part 2 coming up soon).

If you read last month’s newsletter, you also know that I put all of my online modular synthesis courses on sale for the month of June. I’m going to extend that sale to July 4 – so if you haven’t taken advantage of it yet but planned to, do so now.


  • featured articleI worked for Dave Smith at Sequential Circuits in the mid to late 80s. The opportunities he gave me made the rest of this life I’m enjoying possible.
  • Alias Zone updatesThe original SoCal Synth Society version of my piece Compassion has been mixed, mastered, and is now available on Bandcamp.
  • Learning Modular updatesMy course sale is going on for a few more days.
  • Patreon updatesIn the middle of preparing for two gigs just over a week apart, I wrote up what changes I made to my performance system based on what I’ve learned.
  • upcoming eventsOn July 2 I am playing at SynthaCider in the Belmar district of Lakewood (near Denver), Colorado, with tentative plans to play up to four more times later this summer and fall. Plus on July 9/10 (depending on your time zone), Shueh-li Ong will be interviewing me again for Part 2 of her Music & Chat show on Oceanachine.

Alias Zone Updates

Chris Meyer's Alias Zone - Compassion

Last month I released on Bandcamp a piece called Compassion. This was its original performance (at the SoCal Synth Society’s NAMMless Jamuary event), and holds a special place in my heart; I cleaned up the mix, and had Howard Givens of Spotted Peccary perform his mastering magic on it. I performed an extended quad version of it as part of the Currents New Media Festival last month, and have also recorded a studio version of it for a future album – but in the meantime, enjoy this document of its origin.

Learning Modular Updates

As I mentioned last month, I know inflation has been putting pressure on a lot of people – so rather than raise my prices, I decided to run on a sale on all of my online courses for the month of June, and made the lowest level of my Eurorack Expansion course free. I’ve decided to keep that sale running through July 4, so the next few days will be your last chance to get them at these prices. I’ve had musicians take the original Learning Modular Synthesis course and comment how it helped them better understand their non-modular synths as well.

Remember: when you buy one of my courses, you get immediate access that does not expire until I decide to close down Learning Modular altogether (which I hope will be many years from now!).

Patreon Updates

During June I was rehearsing for a pair of upcoming shows, meaning I had less free time to write my usual long-form posts for my beloved Patreon subscribers. But that doesn’t mean I was totally silent!

For example, I wrote up an extended post for my +5v and above subscribers about what I had learned (and changed) from my recent performances as I got ready for next two, including some thoughts on choosing envelope generators, problems with VCAs that either cut off the sound too early or not at all, how different modules with the same name can behave differently, and why I added even more multiples to my performing case. (That maybe should have been four separate posts! But my subscribers have said they like the long-form posts where I tie things together with different though threads running throughout.)

My +5v and above subscribers also got the first shot at a long list of gear (both modular and non) I am selling as part of an end-of-spring clear-out. A lot of things are still available, including some mixers – so check it out.

I also wrote a public remembrance of working with Dave Smith on Patreon the day after his passing (with more stories in addition to the above main article), and also publicly posted an indexed version of my first interview with Shueh-li Ong of Oceanachine (we’re doing part two in July – see below).

I’m hoping that July and August give me more time to catch up on all of the articles I have in my head to write for my Patrons, including updates to both my gigging and studio modulars, lessons learned from my recent quad performance, and further tech notes from the studio. Then I’m playing up to four gigs in September and October before slowing down this winter. Thank you to my subscribers who have been patient with me through my manic/depressive fits of writing during my busy schedule this year.

Upcoming Events


July 2: Performance at SynthaCider (Locust Cider, Lakewood/Belmar Colorado, 6:30 PM MDT)

I am playing a live set at Locust Cider in the Belmar section of Lakewood, Colorado (in the greater Denver area) the weekend after the Kraftwerk concert at nearby Red Rocks. Other artists that evening will include El Roachy, Moss Pig, and Modulus10. I will be playing an extended version of The Cave, which I premiered during SynthFest France earlier this year. In addition to my hybrid modular + laptop performance system, I will be bringing out the ATV aFrame for the first time. Admission is free (but do be sure to sample their ciders!). Chris Cardone of Luigi’s Modular also plans to stream it live on his Modulus10 YouTube channel.

July 9/10: Part 2 of my Music & Chat live online interview on Oceanachine (Saturday 6:30 PM PDT / 9:30 PM EDT; Sunday 2:30 AM BST / 3:30 AM Sunday CEST / 11:30 AM Sunday ACT)

We had so much fun during  my first interview with Shueh-li Ong on her Oceanachine program, that we’re doing it again – this time covering more of my modular musical past and present, from the PAiA-based system I had with me in college through my current Eurorack-based modular systems and performances today.

Then I’ll be taking a little break to create some new music (as well as mix and master recent tracks) before playing the Chill Out Room at Knobcon in September, with anywhere from three to no more gigs before the end of the year. I’ll keep you posted as I learn more and things firm up.

I’ll be honest with you: All of these live performances have also come with a fair amount of stress. I get so worried about delivering a good performance, that I forget to enjoy the process of performing music. I keep telling others that no one knows what you’re going to play beforehand, so they don’t know if it is coming out exactly the way you planned; instead, just worry about it being good, even if it deviates from your plan – and above all, enjoy the process. Let’s see if I can learn to take my own advice!

constantly rehearsing for my next gig –