I’ve been playing music for 46 years. (I started when I was 4), so yes, I’m 50.
For my graduation present, my mom got me a Casio CZ1 (I think that was the model). It had a whopping 4 track sequencer in it and a polyphony of maybe 8 notes…I forget). I would write a bunch of songs, sequence them, save them to tape, but I had no real way to get lyrics into those songs recorded.
I had a friend that had a studio and a Korg M1. He couldn’t really hook the Casio up to his studio because it was SO noisy. So I would have to recreate the songs on the M1. Time was money, so I couldn’t really do much with that, so I kind of gave up after sort of recording one of my songs.
When I was in my 20s, I got a job at a local music store called Toledo Musical Instrument Exchange. They allowed you to rent gear from them. I had rented a Korg Wavestation Rack, which not only had synth sounds, but you could plug a mic into it and use the onboard effects. It would had a sequencer. So I got a little tape recorder with an line input and would attach it to the recorder, hit play on the sequencer and record my vocals into it. It still kind of sounded pretty amatuerish.
I ended up buying a Korg O1W/Pro and learning to play that. I bought my first DAW (a Windows 95 compatible DAW called Musicator).
I then got a job for Diamond Multimedia and quickly became what was known as a Product Team Leader. It was for an audio card called “Monster Sound” and it came with a Roland GS MIDI Daughtr Board. I was the only one in the company that knew anything about MIDI, so I wrote the documentation for the MIDI aspect of it as well as the customer facing website and internal facing website for support for it. I also included a MIDI file called “Monster In My Computer” with the card. Because of all that, I became known as Midiboy around Diamond Multimedia. This eventually earned me a major promotion and I became Supervisor Of Technology and Training, which made it so I was able to purchase real equipment to record with.
So I bought a 4-Track tape recorder. (This is still back in 1998). I recorded my first album and most of my 2nd album on that.
Long story made slightly shorter…I upgraded many, many times, until present day, which I am 100% digital now with a pretty high end computer / daw setup and various keyboard controllers, etc. I just finished my 10th album (an instrumental album called “When Words Fail” under my real name, Gregg Hart).
So that is where I am today.