Charles Cohen

Buchla player. Born 31 December 1949. Died 29 September 2017
Charles Cohen
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1949-12-31
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Charles Cohen

Charles Cohen Biography (Wikipedia)

Charles Cohen (1945-2017) was a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area-based free jazz musician and composer. Creating music since 1971, his music was entirely improvisational and produced solely on a vintage Buchla Music Easel synthesizer, an extremely rare integrated analog performance instrument made by synthesizer pioneer Don Buchla. He has been increasingly recognized for his artistry performing internationally and was one of a handful of musicians who has mastered the Buchla Music Easel, an extremely rare instrument. Only twenty-five of the instruments were produced in the early 1970s and only a few have survived. He was also considered a pioneer in synthesizers and performance music. In 2011, Cohen was named a Pew Fellow by the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage for his contributions to improvised and electronic music.

He says he was inspired by free jazz pianist Cecil Taylor. Cohen worked for many years with musician Jeff Cain in their group The Ghostwriters. He works with other media artists in improvisational settings such as the Red Room, Knitting Factory and Tonic. Cohen concentrates on creating electronic music in the setting of the live performance space. He was openly gay and has performed in LGBT-specific performances, events and venues.

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Charles Cohen
Slow, Blue and Horizontal
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