This year of 2014 marked several important anniversaries in the synth world. One in which I had the privilege of participating was 40 years of Yamaha making synthesizers. Of course, the company itself is much older; we celebrated their 125th anniversary in 2013. But this is their 40th year of having proper synthesizers on the commercial market, beginning with the SY1 in 1974.
At their new Artist Services facility in Burbank, California, a party was held featuring a wear-white theme, a house band led by David "Creatchy" Garfield, and cameo performances and jam-alongs by such accomplished keyboardists as Cassandra O'Neal (Prince), Brett Tuggle (Fleetwood Mac), and the legendary Patrice Rushen.
Last but not least, a "petting zoo" included playable vintage Yamaha synths, including the SY2, CS30 with its cool sequencer, mammoth DX1, and rare GS1 FM synth. Here's just a little video of some of what we saw. Scroll past the video for a slide show more pictures, and don't miss the new, redesigned yamahasynth.com site, the technical and how-to hub for all things to do with Yamaha synthesizers and workstations.