Korg Analog Synth Chief Tatsuya Takahashi Announces Departure

Following a 10–year run in Korg's analog division, synth dynamo Tatsuya Takahashi has announced his departure from the Tokyo firm. According to a statement on Facebook, Tatsuya will be heading "...to Cologne to explore new areas where sound and technology can have positive social implications." Mr. Takahashi will continue to work with Korg in an advisory capacity.

During his tenure at Korg, Tatsuya has led the development of a series of instruments that singularly focused on bringing the joys of analog synths to the masses. As we've written about before, this concept of "the democratization of synthesis" started with the humble Monotron and runs through the popular Volca series and last year's breakthrough Minilogue among others.

Just a decade ago, analog synthesizers were priced as luxury items. With the help of digital control technology, Takahashi and Korg brought the price of these machines down far enough to help them spread to new musicians and communities. As Takahashi mentions in his farewell statement on Facebook, this includes underprivileged children in Detroit, as relayed to him by Underground Resistance member and storied techno producer Mike Banks.

Each of these products has steadily lowered the barrier to entry for synths, and helped steer the analog resurgence of the past decade. With his guidance, Korg reissued and reignited love affairs with its MS-20 and the ARP Odyssey.

Perhaps the most telling exercise of Tatsuya’s personal vision came with the Volca series. Across the Keys, Bass, Beats, KICK, FM, and Sample models, the Volcas share a common and intuitive interface and production–ready power that makes them a lot more than battery powered music toys price and size would suggest.

Tatsuya’s latest innovations—the hyper–affordable Minilogue polysynth and Monologue monosynth—cement his impact on Korg’s analog legacy and make us excited to see what’s next for a designer who always understands that electronics, first and foremost, should make music making fun.

For us here at Reverb, it's been a genuine joy seeing these approachable products reach the hands of new synth users all over the world. Thanks to Tatsuya for the many tones, and best of luck in his next chapter in Europe.

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