About SynthTrax

From SynthTrax
  • What synth did Gary Numan use on Cars?
  • What synth is that on Daft Punk's Da Funk?
  • What is Bernie Worrell playing on Parliament's epic 'Flash Light' track?

Good questions - glad you asked! This will be the resource to answer all these questions - and more!

There are plenty of great synth websites out there - when it comes to the specs and facts of synth history. And this site isn't trying to compete with them - they're great.

But! Synths are musical instruments and I personally find synths to be most meaningful when musicians get their hands on them. I'm fascinated by the genres they've created, the unique sounds and effects they produce, and the emotions the evoke. That's what this website is about. Which tracks used which synths, and why that was important, or interesting, or just plain awesome sounding.

As there are millions of songs with synths in them, I'm most interested in the first use of a synth, or the most iconic use or archetypally definitive. Or perhaps a famous track that happen to have amazing synth work in it .

And a key difference with all those generic articles that list tracks that feature the Minimoog or DX7 is that these will be verified citations, not just repeats of internet 'common knowledge'. It's surprising that even Wikipedia isn't very good at referencing synth usage! Each entry in the database will be proved through one or more of the following pieces of evidence:

  • Sleeve notes
  • Quotes from interviews in reputable journals
  • Videos or photographs
  • Ads (up to a point - paid promotion doesn't guarantee usage on a song/album)

This crusade may be impossible, foolhardy even – and may never be complete* (*definitely will never be complete!) - but we may discover some great music along the way and gain an even deeper appreciation of these fantastic and always-futuristic synthesizer machines!

- I'll be adding a synth every week or so which will feature profiles of the most notable tracks featuring that synth, with embedded YouTube for quick listening convenience, and a link to the main database with 1,000s of tracks on that can be searched, sorted and filtered to your heart's content.

See the list of synths already started here: SynthTrax Home