The Bob Moog Foundation Turns Seven
The number seven is considered significant in religion, music, literature, and math. It is often thought of as a lucky, magical, and even sacred number.
On August 21, 2013, the Bob Moog Foundation (BMF) celebrates its seventh anniversary – seven years of carrying Bob’s pioneering legacy forward to future generations. The occasion is gravid with import as we prepare to forge an emboldened path towards igniting creativity through music, science, history, and innovation.
During the past seven years the BMF has seen its share of luck, magic, and challenges. The year 2008 saw the beginning of the world’s worst economic recession since the Great Depression. Such times are devastating for small non-profits, and over 100,000 of them went out of business between 2008 and 2010. Because of the lean operations of the BMF (we had only one employee at the time) we survived and prospered. By 2011 our programs and infrastructure were growing and thriving, thanks to support from our volunteers, Board of Directors, donors, and the music technology industry.
For seven years we have faced the complex dynamics in which the Moog legacy resides. At once an inspirational force for positivity, it is also a magnet for power struggles. Bob was no stranger to this dynamic. In 1970 he was forced to sell his company, R.A. Moog Co., to a venture capitalist. Bob’s company became Moog Music, Inc., and in the years that followed, the new owner lost sight of Bob’s value and vision, eventually relegating him to a small office off the engineering floor where he made LAB Amps for Gibson and foot pedals for Maestro.
After seven years, Bob left Moog Music, Inc. As counterintuitive as it may seem, his creative pursuits were no longer aligned with the company he founded. He fled the corporate ethos, which he found misguided and uninspiring, and moved his family 700 miles away to 89 secluded acres of land in the hills of Western North Carolina.
For the next 20 years, Bob joyfully forged his own path creating Big Briar, a new company that designed one-off custom musical instruments and alternate controllers, (often with the help of only one technical assistant). He wrote for a breadth of publications and consulted and or collaborated with Kurzweil, Casio, Crumar, Fairlight, and Synton. Bob also reconnected with his first love, the theremin. It comes as no surprise that he found this era, one characterized by self-determination, to be deeply satisfying.
Coincidentally, the BMF finds itself at a similar juncture as our namesake. After seven years, we must shed dynamics that are limiting our creativity and growth and embrace opportunities for support and collaboration with those who share our vision and want to be part of our quest to inspire a new generation of musicians, scientists, artists, and creative thinkers. Like Bob, we are resilient and we will weather the ups and downs with steadfast determination, relentless passion, and unwavering vision.
I am deeply grateful to all of you who have supported the BMF over the last seven years, and I look forward to sharing the next seven years of inspired progress with you.
Big Moog Love,
P.S. If you are so inspired, be part of our path forward. Donate here: http://bit.ly/donatebmf