DJ Spinna’s Starter Guide to Moog Records

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Mini-Moog Voyager. To honor the occasion, the audio scientists up at Moog HQ have crafted a limited run of 30 synths embossed with 24-karat gold finishes — which sounds like something that would make a great holiday gift if you happen to trade stocking stuffers with the likes of ’Ye and Jay. For the rest of us penny-pinchers then, Hive tapped up known Moog record collector and hip-hop producer DJ Spinna to compile a beginner’s guide to the funky world of Moog recordings, which hit their creative peak in the late-’60s. Now tune-in, turn on and funk it up!

1. Perry and Kinsgley, “Mas Que Nada” (1967)

The album this is from [Kaleidoscopic Vibrations: Spotlight on the Moog] is documented as the first commercial release of a Moog album. The way the Moog was being used was quite new and people were pretty much covering pop songs of the day. I’m a big Brazilian music fan and collect a lot of it and that version of “Mas Que Nada” is pretty close to it. That was also one of the first Moog records I ever picked up.
2. Dyck Hyman, “Give It Up or Turn It Loose” (1969)

I started digging for records for sampling purposes and that album [The Age of Electronicus] was one of my treasured pieces. This cover of the James Brown song is a good way to display how the Moog can be used in a funk vibe: it emulates the guitar section and there’s elements of electronic drums which I believe came from one of the early synthesizers. It took a funk standard to another level and gave it a totally different outlook. Most of the Moog covers were pop standards but this was nothing but funk. I sampled something else off that album, for my remix of Das EFX’s “Microphone Master,” but I’ve often been tempted to sample the cover version! A lot of my contemporaries have the record in their collection.

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