Like so many of us in the synthesizer world, I was deeply saddened to hear of Dave Smith’s passing.  Dave not only played a huge role in the evolution of music synthesis, he also touched my life in many ways.

I first met Dave when he came by E-mu to discuss the design of his first sequencer product.  We became friends, – and once the Prophet 5 and the Emulator were released, sometimes competitors – but it was exciting to see his vision evolve, to watch him build Sequential Circuits, and to witness his impact on music creation.

Many years passed, but at NAMM in 2015, when I was considering forming Rossum Electro-Music, Dave greeted me with a hug, and enthusiastically offered his support to help us get started, adding in his inimitable way, “… as long as you don’t compete with me!”  And a few seconds later, “I want to make it totally clear: that was a joke!”  True to his word, Dave and the Sequential folks have been helpful ever since.  All of us at Rossum Electro-Music deeply appreciate their support.

I last saw Dave in the Sequential hospitality suite at NAMM 2020.  He invited me to sit next to him, and we caught up on years of history.  Amazingly, we had never realized that we grew up in San Jose less than two miles from each other, and had Dave’s parents not insisted he attend Bellarmine High, we would have been together in the same high school class!

I will miss Dave’s luminary presence in the industry, as well as the chance to discover together more about our parallel lives.

–Dave Rossum

SP-1200® Reissue Now Available!

Assimil8or 2.0 Software is Available!

Assimil8or Version 2.0 Software brings a host of powerful new features and workflow enhancements to the Assimil8or Multi-Timbral Phase Modulation Sampler. Check out all the details in the Assimil8or 2.0 Software New Features Guide.

35th Anniversary SP-1200™ Renovation!

To celebrate the 35th anniversary of the introduction of E-mu System’s iconic “SP” sampling drum percussion system, Dave Rossum and the team at Rossum Electro-Music are creating an extremely limited number of renovated “better-than-new” SP-1200s!  Learn more….

Introducing Mob of Emus!

Mob of Emus Polyfunctional Harmonic Sextet is a powerful six channel music and sound design tool that packs an enormous amount of creative power into an amazingly compact 16HP module.  More info here…

Mob of Emus Introduction

Check out the Mob of Emus Introduction video.

The Interview


Learn much, much more about Dave’s history and the inside story of E-mu Systems in this four-part interview by

Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4