Groovebox


Groovebox

The term Groovebox was originally used by Roland corporation to refer to their MC-303, but has since entered general use. It refers to a self-contained instrument for the production of live, loop-based electronic music, with a high degree of user control facilitating improvisation.

A groovebox consists of three integrated elements.
* one or more sound sources, such as a drum machine, a synthesizer or a sampler
* a music sequencer
* a control surface, ie a combination of knobs (potentiometer or rotary encoder), sliders and buttons, and display elements (LED and/or LCD)

The integration of these elements into a single system allows the musician to rapidly construct and control a pattern-based sequence, often with multiple instrumental or percussion voices playing simultaneously.

These sequences may also be chained together into a song in a live and immediate way. Provision may be made for sequences and songs to be saved, retrieved from memory, and inserted into the current performance whilst playing. In some cases, an entire musical performance may be created by a single player with a single groovebox. In other cases, the groovebox is simply one instrument amongst many. This is reflected by the large variety of grooveboxes available, ranging from Roland's lower-end MC and SP products with include basic sequencing and sampling capabilities, to Akai's flagship MPC 4000 and 5000, Yamaha's RS7000 or Roland's own MV-8800 which include features such as high-end sampling, high-polyphony synthesizers, and extensive sequencing, connection and storage possibilities.

Groovebox style instruments have facilitated many performers, both amateur and professional, who may have previously been unfamiliar with electronic music, to explore the genre. Whilst some in the genre initially derided these instruments (in particular the MC-303) and the opening of the field as leading to a drop in standards, they are now generally accepted as having a legitimate place in the form.

In addition, many performers and bands from outside the electronic community have integrated groovebox instruments into their shows, as a convenient way of incorporating electronic sound into a more traditional format.

The sequencer and control aspects of a groovebox may be used to control an external instrument over MIDI, and the internal voices may similarly be controlled by external equipment.

A groovebox is similar to a music workstation. The general differences are that it will often omit, or include only a simplified keyboard, is designed to be portable, and will usually include more user controls. Whereas a workstation is often targeted towards studio musicians and composers, grooveboxes are designed more to suit the needs of live performers. However, units matching either description are used both on stage and in the studio.

A defining characteristic of a groovebox is the ability for the performer to alter both the sequence and the sound parameters in real time, without interruption of the performance. Units marketed as such, which have failed to implement this feature correctly, or at all, have not been well received.

Grooveboxes may also be compared to drum machines such as the earlier Roland TR series (606, 808, 909 etc), or to their TB-303, and the term has retroactively been applied to such units.

"Groovebox" type instruments include:

* E-mu XL-7 Command Station
* E-mu MP-7 Command Station
* Ensoniq ASR-X
* Korg's Electribe series
* Quasimidi QM-309 Rave-o-lution
* Roland MC-303, MC-307, MC-505, MC-909, MC-808, SP-555, SP-606, SP-808, MV-8000, MV-8800
* Yamaha RM1x, RS7000, SU700, DX200, AN200
* Akai's MPC series - the MPC 60, 500, 1000, 2000, 2000XL, 2500, 3000, 4000 and 5000


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Groovebox — Mit der MC 303 etablierte Roland 1996 die Instrumentengattung Groovebox. Der Begriff Groovebox wurde von Roland mit der MC 303 (1996) geprägt. Man bezeichnet damit meist eine Kombination aus Sampler oder ROM Sampler/Synthesizer, Sequenzer und… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Groovebox — Le terme Groovebox a initialement été employé par la société Roland pour désigner leur MC 303. De nos jours, ce terme est utilisé de façon plus générique pour désigner un instrument autonome pour la production en direct de musiques électroniques… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Roland Corporation — Infobox Company company name = Roland Corporation company company type = Public corporation (tyo|7944, Osaka) foundation = April 18, 1972 location city = Hamamatsu location country = Japan key people = Ikutaro Kakehashi area served = industry =… …   Wikipedia

  • Music sequencer — Contents 1 Modern sequencers 2 Software sequencers / DAWs with sequencing features 2.1 …   Wikipedia

  • Roland MC-303 — The Roland MC 303 is the first of a series of musical instruments known as a Groovebox. It combines a simple sound module with a sequencer to record and store notation, along with controls aimed at encouraging the musician to improvise the music… …   Wikipedia

  • Roland MC-909 — MC 909 Manufactured by Roland Dates 2002–2006 Price £1156 UK, $1795 US Technical specifications …   Wikipedia

  • MC-303 — Roland MC 303 Groovebox Die Roland MC 303 ist ein Synthesizer, Drum Machine und Hardwaresequenzer in einem und eröffnete damit den Trend der Grooveboxen, welche es ermöglichten, innerhalb kurzer Zeit in einer geschlossenen Arbeitsumgebung Musik… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • MC-303 — Roland MC 303 Roland MC 303 La Roland MC 303 est le premier modèle d une série d instruments électroniques dénommés Groovebox. Elle combine un simple module sonore avec un séquenceur permettant d enregistrer et de stocker des notes de musique… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mc-303 — Roland MC 303 Roland MC 303 La Roland MC 303 est le premier modèle d une série d instruments électroniques dénommés Groovebox. Elle combine un simple module sonore avec un séquenceur permettant d enregistrer et de stocker des notes de musique… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Roland MC-303 — La Roland MC 303 est le premier modèle d une série d instruments électroniques dénommés Groovebox. Elle combine un simple module sonore avec un séquenceur permettant d enregistrer et de stocker des notes de musique tout en rendant possible l… …   Wikipédia en Français


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.