Filter and Resonance
Used to be embarrassed that I had never visited the New England
Synthesizer Museum in Nashua despite having lived in New
England almost two decades overlapping. Probably passed by a
dozen times when I lived in Nashua for a year.
Used to be embarrassed until I saw,
You-tube videos of the place.
When I’d talked to David Wilson on the phone a couple times,
exchanged emails, sold him parts through the mail, made vague
plans to come and see his synth museum someday, you get the
impression that a thousand people bother him to see the
But until the videos hit the web,
not many had seen it in person.
There would be old timers who had worked for ARP or MOOG
back in the day, still working the vintage repair game and they
would roll their eyes when some buck would mention taking a tour
of David’s Museum.
And none of us Fine Young Cannibals,
understood what they meant behind their resigned chuckles.
Everybody who had worked Daddy’s Junky Music, Caruso, Luca’s
or any of the other houses of rock and roll had some story about
the weird man with the Pokémon shirt and sideburns who came in
and bought something in the shop that had been there for years
and no one In the store knew what it was anymore.
Those music store salesmen don’t talk,
about seeing the rare synthesizer again after that.
Wedged between the Enigma Code man and the guy hawking
LED bulbs, Dave Wilson even did it to my technology toys stand
at the MIT Flea Market, when he came up without petting my pug
dog, Snorkels, and went straight for the Alpha-Syntauri Synth
system on the blanket.
Stroking the keyboard’s wood block sides,
muttering “You will be mine” in some 7 bit language only 1980’s
Last time I saw Dave Wilson he had lightning bolt mutton chops
and was trying, unsuccessfully, to hit on my girlfriend by trying to
see if she was into Pokémon, like really really into Pokémon,
because he was sure there was no way she could be interested in
the Roland synth he had brought to Analog Heaven 2006.
I guess he really was always better
with machines that went boop in the night, than people.
The Video showed 147 keyboard and drum machines and
mellotrons and modular mysteries crammed Scooby-doo into that
few back rooms, so many on their side, few working, less hooked
up to demo, or repaired enough to be a record date like every
visitor hoped of a museum instead of this mess of leaky roof that
could have been repaired by the sale of just one Oberheim
leaning against the wall-tarps..
Stumbling over priceless broken techno toys
making any Soft Cell Boy drool dreams of 24 decibel filters
Now it is Analog Heaven 2010 and David has been dead for 6
months, I am just finding out, as like everyone I am spinning
fantasies of all the vans heading at break neck speed up route 3
to Nashua trying to salvage any music making treasure off
David’s poor frikkin mother who had to find him.
When you die doing what you love
no one ever asks if it loved you back, they just haggle.
There are people who make art.
There are people who collect art.
Then there are people who collect things.
But David’s compulsion was manifested by keeping the
synthesizers he loved far from the world for decades unheard to a
few brave travelers who love Wendy Carlos more than they fear
black mold and asbestos.
No one really wonders who loved David,
Only cynics assume solder companies.
When I take a look around my room of sound toys too, visited by
so few, I think of the David Wilson Projects that I need to pass on
to better, eager, young-hand homes than museums to thinking
about the same thing day after day of your shortened life and
almost never hitting the record button.
Wonder If anybody really knew him,
that wasn’t controlled by Analog Voltages.
But then again, aren’t we all?
Dear Seth Meyer show and all their writers and staff.
This was going to be a letter about how I admire you and asking for a job, but ain’t nobody got time for that shit now.
You know NBC messed up giving Trump his own hour against Biden on ABC. Maybe none of the work you all are involved in is at the center of the vast NBC Empire but I think you might understand how I feel.
I have been a Late Night Comedy fiend since I got to stay up and watch Kermit the Frog Guest host the Tonight Show. Used to watch it all. Every SNL, Almost every Letterman even if I had to pick up the Friday rerun, constant Conan, Daily Show, etc.
How bad? I even read Chevy Chase biographies. Yes, that is plural and no I am not proud.
If any of the networks want to make this election closer than it rightfully should be, I really can’t take the constant desperation of the news AND consume humor about it. The Seth Meyers Show and Amber’s new show are the last ones left that handle things well enough for me to laugh sometimes. I say this as someone with a Poly Sci degree who has done AV for multiple senators.
I’m not asking your show to stop writing about politics I am desperately asking your network to not make my life worse.
I think if networks don’t realize that possibly there are a lot of people they are going to lose just due to stress then I don’t think they understand comedy.
I’m sure the bitterest writer in the room is pissing themselves laughing at the innocence of that statement and by me calling them out I’m sure someone won 10 bucks.
But I already can’t laugh at Schitts Creeks as an SCTV junkie, or Arrested Development, or any of the other problems of rich white people any more. How long until I can’t even laugh at the problems of people who can afford a house and water? Adversity is material for jokes, not something you inflict on your audience.
I worshiped the timing between Craig Ferguson and Jeff Peterson but this is my first email to a late night program. If someone took 40 years to speak would you listen?
Maybe that’s why this started off as a cover letter. Because trying to laugh along these days takes too much out of me to not want to do something about it.
Sean M. Shea
SEAN SHEA – Was born in Detroit at a young age, but he found a cure in time. From a misspent youth of criminally high library fines, he’s worked his way up from dishwasher to minor chef to major rocks stars, run election campaigns, done the Xerox thing, college graduations, been a scribe, IMAX projectionist, pinball hustler, weapons test broadcaster, worked for the dead, been Akai’s drum machine guru, sold gear to touring acts, been a roadie, and co-founded an award winning pie company. National Poetry Slam Champ in 1996 profiled in the film Slam Nation. Folks tell him stories. Once sat for 3 hrs with a veteran who had seen a Nuclear weapon test. Or the guy who drove over frozen Lake Michigan in 1935. Originator of the Spirit of the Slam award and the canine humor parody twitter @snorkelsthepug B.A. from University of RI and has taught electronic music and film sound.