Dance music pioneer died at home in Mumbai on 3 July
Dance music pioneer Charanjit Singh died at his home in Mumbai on 3 July. He was 74 years old. A key member of the Bollywood session musician elite, guitarist Singh was an enthusiastic early adopter of synthesizers and sequencers. As well as Roland’s legendary 808 and 303 drum machines, he also owned an Ondioline, a French electronic instrument invented in the 1940s; and he had also incorporated a Mattel Synsonics drum machine into his set-up, dubbed the "pew-pew machine" because of the sounds it produced.
Singh rose to prominence after "accidentally" making what's often referred to as the first acid house record: Ten Ragas To A Disco Beat. Recorded in 1982, it pitted traditional ragas in triple speed against disco beats programmed into his 808 and 303. When the Dutch label Bombay Connection reissued it in 2010, it triggered a surge of interest in his music that allowed him to tour internationally. But illness forced him to cancel shows earlier this year.