Ondes Martenot

by Jonathan on May 28, 2002


Would you like to purchase an Ondes Martenot like Jonny Greenwood uses on tour? Fortunately, Analogue Systems has them for sale for £1050 on their site. Analogue Systems were commissioned by Radiohead to reproduce the Ondes Martenot, which they have dubbed “The French Connection.” Here’s some info about it:

The French Connection was not born out of nowhere… it was commissioned during 2000 by Jonny Greenwood of the band Radiohead. Greenwood already owned an Ondes Martenot (an instrument built in 1983 by the son of Maurice Martenot) complete with all three resonators, but was nervous about performing with it, fearing that it would be damaged on tour. So he approached Martenot to purchase a second device for live use. Unfortunately for him (but fortunately for the rest of us) his instrument was one of a production run of just 50, and these were long gone – 44 to a music school in Japan, and the remaining five to other musicians.

So Greenwood approached Bob Williams, owner of Analogue Systems, to ask whether he would be prepared to design and build a replica for use with Radiohead’s existing RS Integrators. Williams accepted the challenge, and in April 2001 demonstrated a prototype to Greenwood. Following a couple of minor modifications, production began, and the first two French Connections were delivered to Radiohead in May 2001.

Check out more here.
(thanks to karolina)



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