Drum Machine Facts

Drum Machine Facts
A drum machine is a modern musical instrument of the electronic instrument family. A drum machine imitates the sound of drums and other percussion instruments and can be used when a drummer is not available or for specific music genres such as house music. The first electronic drum machine was the Rhythmicon created by Leon Theremin and Henry Cowell in 1931. It met with limited success and vanished. In 1957 the Chamberlin Rhythmate was created which was able to play tape loops of real jazz drum kits. The first commercial drum machine was the Wurlitzer Side Man in 1959, which had 12 electronic rhythm patterns. In the 1970s programmable drum machines were designed and since then they have continued to be redesigned and advance with technology.
Interesting Drum Machine Facts:
Drum machines can offer an economic option for recording when a drummer is not available or is not in the budget.
The first drum machine was the Rhythmicon, created in 1931.
The Chamberlin Rhythmate was the second drum machine, created in 1957.
The Wurlitzer Side Man was the third drum machine.
In 1963 Raymond Scott created the Bandito and the Bongo Artist - a drum machine.
Throughout the 1960s a variety of drum machines were created in different parts of the world - including the Donca-Matic DA-20 in Tokyo, Japan.
Robin Gibb, a pop singer and member of the iconic band the Bee Gees, was the first to release a major hit pop song with a drum machine in the recording. It was titled 'Saved by the Bell' and reached the #2 spot in 1969 in Britain's charts.
Other bands in the 1970s that used drum machines included Sly & the Family Stone, Can, Timmy Thomas, Pink Floyd, Journey, and Osamu Kitajima.
Early drum machines used sound synthesis to generate sounds. Today digital sampling is used. Some of the earlier drum machines are still used and prized by music producers because of their unique sound abilities.
The first programmable drum machine was created in 1972 by Eko. It was called the ComputeRhythm.
The first drum machine to use digital sampling to create its percussion sounds was the Linn LM-1, which cost $4,995US when it was released in 1980. There were only 500 of these machines ever made but it influenced the sound of pop music in the 1980s tremendously.
Songs from the 1980s that feature the Linn LM-1 include 'Dance', by Gary Numan, 'Dare' by the Human League, 'New Traditionalists' by Devo, and Prince used it on both albums Purple Rain and 1999. Prince bought one of the first of these machines ever made.
In 1980 and 1983 the Roland TR-808 and TR-909 (respectively) drum machines were released. These are still used today.
Modern drum machines make use of computers to provide enhanced capabilities, as well as midi which allows for the connection of many musical instruments and equipment.
Major record labels today sometimes use drum machines to reduce recording costs associated with having to hire live drummers.
Some people do not fell the sound of a drum machine will ever sound the same as a live drummer.

Related Links:
Music Instruments Facts
Animals Facts
Pulley Examples