I was approached by Frankie Laine who had heard about the use of synthesis in producing
musical albums. He asked if I could create, program and record backgrounds for his next album
that he’d be calling ‘New Directions’ because of the new way of creating music. At that time, synthesis
was in it’s infancy with ‘FM’ synthesis and the Yamaha dX7 the state of art in synthesizers of that time. ‘FM’ synthesis
used dynamic wave shaping to approximate existing instrument sounds. I’m very proud if the results that we
achieved with just 3 TX7s (a DX7 without the keyboard), an early Yamaha drum machine of the same vintage, an RX15,
and an Ensoniq Mirage ‘rack mount’ sampler synthesizer. This early sampler only had 2 seconds of memory that was divided
among four samples, so you can see that it was rather limited in it’s usefulness.
The album was later re-mixed with additional live instruments as synthesizer technology improved and made my original tracks seem dated. I feel that there is a certain charm to the simplicity of these original versions. I hope that you agree. I was impressed that Frankie was willing to try a very new technology near the end of his career.
Here are the seven tracks that were included out of the 12 or so, that I created for the original album that was released in Cassette form.