How they made electronic music 30 years ago

Garage Band, Pro Tools, Logic, sequencers on tablets and phones—anyone can create music these days with zero programming knowledge. But Diode Milliampere shows you how it was done with MS-DOS. Yes, that command line inputting, C-drive accessing MS-DOS from 30 years ago. It turned out pretty well!


Diode writes on his Soundcloud page (where you can listen to more of his stuff):

I use Adlib Tracker II, and MS-DOS program which sequences the Yamaha OPL3 chip. My earlier music was created with Ableton Operator and there are some LSDJ songs in there.

Rock on.

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The OPL3 is doing all the real work. There were lots of MS-DOS mod trackers as long as you had a sound chip to do the heavy lifting.

Really impressive is something like Music Maker on the Apple II where a 1-bit speaker is used to do two note music tracking in software. Okay, it sounds like crap now, but this was astounding for something that should only have been able to do the most primitive of *beep beep beep* and the only interface is a single bit you can toggle with a 1 MHz cpu.