Larry Fast is best known for his series of pioneering electronic music albums recorded under the project name SYNERGY. He is also known for his work with Peter Gabriel; playing synthesizer on records and on tour, and rounding out the production team on many of Peter's albums for nearly a decade.

Larry Fast
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Starting with the first SYNERGY album, "Electronic Realizations for Rock Orchestra" recorded in 1975, and through the most recent SYNERGY release in 2002, Larry's ten albums of electronic music have been on the cutting edge of studio production techniques and the development of new music technologies. And, of course, respect for the music composition and arrangements heard on the SYNERGY albums have led to wide-ranging work with a variety of artists in many styles over the years.

New, digitally remastered CD versions of the first nine SYNERGY recordings were reissued by Universal/PolyGram's Chronicles label in 1998. A tenth CD "Reconstructed Artifacts" was issued in 2002.

The shimmering electronic textures of the first SYNERGY album in 1975 led to an invitation for Larry to come to Europe and work with the distinguished British-German band Nektar, then enjoying top 20 success in the US. Following an album ("Recycled") and a tour with Nektar, Larry was contacted by Peter Gabriel who had recently left Genesis. Larry was asked to contribute to Peter's subsequent solo albums and tours. Larry's synthesizer playing is heard on all of Peter's early solo albums, but Peter's breakthrough albums, his third solo record (the one with "Games Without Frontiers" and "Biko"), and "Security" ("Shock The Monkey") feature Larry's electronic production skills as well as his introducing Peter to programmable drum machines leading to a newfound emphasis on rhythm in Peter's music.

Larry's production credits show the influence that his control of music technology has had on other artist's styles. All through the 1980's and into the 1990's Larry has worked with an endless stream of world-class artists and producers, and as a producer himself. Artists as diverse as Hall & Oates, Foreigner, Bon Jovi's Richie Sambora and David Bryan, Barbra Streisand, Annie Haslam (Renaissance), Randy Newman, Joan Armatrading, Meat Loaf and many others have called on Larry's talents. Electronic orchestrations for actress Helen Schneider's Kurt Weill retrospective, and new-age act Shadowfax's premier album give a hint at the scope of Larry's electronic production skills. In recognition of this expertise as well as being an electronic arranger and sound consultant, Larry Fast/SYNERGY has been the recipient of Keyboard Magazine's annual award for Best Synthesist.

In the late 1980s Larry Fast also served as the A&R coordinator and executive producer for The Audion Recording Company, the legendary electronic music label. Over twenty-five albums were recorded and released during a three year period before he resigned to allow more time for his own projects outside of the label. After the demise of Passport Records which had initially released the Synergy albums, Larry established Third Contact media as a label for reissuing Synergy CDs for sale over the world wide web. The Third Contact catalog is currently distributed worldwide by the Voiceprint Group of Companies and online at iTunes among other outlets..

Recent projects have included new albums and tours with former Peter Gabriel bandmates Tony Levin and Jerry Marotta as the Grammy®-nominated Tony Levin Band (EMI Narada Records), acting as co-writer and co-producer on Annie Haslam's newest recordings, and numerous other projects. Larry has performed in concert on numereous tours across North America, Japan, and Europe including Russia with the Tony Levin Band starting in 2000. Thanks to today's advanced music-computer technology, the first-ever live performances of Synergy pieces were performed, 25 years after Synergy made its studio-only debut, starting in March 2002 headlining the European electronic music festival Alfa Centauri held near Amsterdam. Larry has also appeared onstage as a member or Wendy Carlos' Switched On Bach Ensemble.

An unexpected turn was the reformation of Nektar in 2002 after a 27 years hiatus. An initial headlining show at the NEARfest rock festival in June 2002 has led additional touring in North America and Europe. A Nektar concert DVD was released in the 4th quarter of 2002 with additional US and European touring with Nektar during 2003.

Recent commissions include broadcast sound logos and "sonic imaging" for the entire XM Satellite Radio network, and hours of new compositions for the Walt Disney Company heard at the Tokyo DisneySea park.



Larry Fast's work in films and visual media include scoring for the original "Laserium" planetarium lightshows; Carl Sagan's "Cosmos" (PBS); the sci-fi movie "The Jupiter Menace", "Netherworld" (co-scored with Bon Jovi's David Bryan); and contributing work for "Birdy" and "Gremlins" (with Peter Gabriel), "Streets of Fire" (with Jim Steinman), "Planes Trains & Automobiles" (with The Dream Academy), "About Last Night"(with John Oates), and "Conflict Of Interest"(co-scored with Bon Jovi's David Bryan) among others. There have also been other films for European and American networks. Larry later expanded his film duties by taking on the tasks of supervising music producer and music editor for independent feature films including "One Way Out" and music editor for "When". Film work has included sound production with noted composer (and fellow electronic music pioneer) Wendy Carlos.

Though Larry Fast and his production company SYNERGY® Electronic Music are not usually associated with the commercial field, he has been involved with several ad campaigns including work with producer Mike Smith (formerly of the Dave Clark Five) for American Airlines; Allied Signal for Doyle Dane Bernbach; Philips Electronics for Gianettino & Meredith; and projects for Chiat Day. Larry has also provided audio and music production for many corporate video projects with clients as diverse as Johnson & Johnson, Rutgers University, International Paper, and Ebasco, among others.



As might be expected, Larry Fast's technical background has allowed him to stay ahead of the curve of studio technology. This gives him an edge on his own projects and keeps him in demand by other producers. Starting with custom-designed synthesizer modules he constructed for Rick Wakeman of Yes, built while Larry was still a student at Lafayette College in the early 1970's, he has been involved in the evolution of the tools of recording. Larry served as a consultant to Moog Music in the development of the Polymoog (1976) and Memorymoog (1982) synthesizers including voicing many of the Memorymoog factory presets. On two associated projects in the late 1970's at AT&T Bell Laboratories (now Lucent Technologies, where the transistor was invented) Larry worked with direct-to-disk digital recording, sampling and resynthesis, computer control of synthesizers, computer generated FM synthesis and other techniques decades before they entered the mainstream. Examples of some early digital synthesis and can be heard on the 1978-79 SYNERGY album "Games".

Through his technology connections, Larry helped introduce the first Fairlight CMI synthesizer/sampler on the third Peter Gabriel solo album in 1979-80. Larry was also involved with the development of microcomputer control of synthesizers. He developed his own computer software used both in live performances with Peter Gabriel and on the ambient SYNERGY "Computer Experiments Volume One" (1980). Later projects used the Universal Synthesizer Interface which later evolved into MIDI. This assured that Larry would be one of the earliest MIDI proponents. Larry currently beta tests computer programs for many music software companies, test flying their MIDI and audio software on his many projects.

Larry Fast has also been the primary electronics designer on other audio projects. One significant device developed is an infrared audio transmitting system used by the hearing disabled.



Larry Fast/SYNERGY received Keyboard Magazine's award for Best Synthesist of the Year 1983; has been associated with numerous Grammy nominated projects; is a member of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), a writer and publisher member of ASCAP, a member of the Audio Engineering Society (AES), International MIDI Association (IMA), a member of the American Federation of Radio and Television performers (AFTRA), serves on Keyboard magazine's advisory board, has written for several magazines, and written the forwards for several leading books in the fields of recording and MIDI. Many articles and interviews about Larry Fast and SYNERGY have appeared over the years including cover stories and foreign publications.

Larry Fast also has been awarded patents for developments related to audio transmission systems used by the hearing impaired.

Larry Fast's Synergy Studio
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