Tribute to electronic music women pioneers

The new Sound on Sound magazine has a long article about the legenday BBC Radiophonics Workshop. Of course one of the central characters in that golden era of early electronic music was Delia Derbyshire. There’s even a website devoted to her works and history:

Also at the Radiophonics Workshop was Daphne Oram. Yes, there’s a website dedicated to her as well: well, to be accurate, it’s under construction but it will be at From that site:

Daphne Oram (1925 – 2003) is one of the central figures in the development of British experimental electronic music.

Another very early pioneer was Bebe Barron. She worked in partnership with her husband Louis. Together they created the first all-electronic music score; to the movie “Forbidden Planet.”

Then there was Suzanne Ciani. She probably is best know for her new age and commercial composition and sound design, but she worked with Donald Buchlas in the early 1970s at the time she went to Berkley. You can read more about her at

Wendy Carlos is without a doubt one of the most important and influential electronic musicians, with many releases after her first and most famous one in 1968, “Switched-On Bach.” The gender issue is a bit more complicated with her, as she was born “Walter Carlos” and underwent a sex-reassignment in 1967, a year before Switched-On Back was released. So even though her first several records were released under the name “Walter”, she was “Wendy” since that time. She has an extensive website as well at which is very extensive and really interesting to trawl through at length… She is also an expert on solar eclipses and their photography, and exotic tunings and music temperament in general.


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