Happy birthday, Giorgio Moroder! The father of modern dance music and both three-time Grammy and Oscar winner turns 70 today. Yes, the man who wrote the soundtrack to Scarface and thought Donna Summer’s vocal “exercises” in “Love to Love You, Baby” were a good idea at a time when people were still getting arrested for filming porn movies is now your grandfather’s age. Time flies!
For those of you too young to know why Moroder is such a big deal, think of any movie made between 1978 and 1990. If you answered Midnight Express, Top Gun, Flashdance, Scarface, American Gigolo, or (more likely for Geekosystem readers) the remake of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis, then you know why.
If you didn’t, think of any electronic act that began writing music after 1981. These people were probably influenced by Moroder, who is, in a way, the Walt Whitman of synthesizers– he was the first major producer to think using computers to make music was a good idea. It’s true that this means that Moroder is the first person to use autotune (and it’s evil stepchild, Ke$ha), but this also means that Moroder is to thank for the entire genres of house, techno, electronica, disco, and, yes, all of modern pop music with the exception of, maybe, Jack Johnson.
So here is today’s Geekosystem Moroder goody bag: An exhaustive mixtape of his greatest hits, an official email to send best wishes to once you’re done listening, and, below, a video of the Buick-sized computer Moroder first used to write tracks like Donna Summer’s “I Feel Love” and Blondie’s “Call Me”:
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