Mr.Pharmacist (aka Gregg Foreman)
Mr.Pharmacist (aka Gregg Foreman), is a multi-instrumentalist musician residing in Los Angeles. He has been playing music for decades alongside of artists like: Cat Power, The Gossip, Beth Ditto, James Williamson (of the Stooges), Lydia Lunch, Alan Vega (Suicide), Martin Rev (Suicide), Jesse Malin, Lucinda Williams, Linda Perry, Toody (Dead Moon), Peter Buck (REM) David J (Bauhaus), Pink Mountaintops, The Delta 72, and is currently Band Leader and key synth player for Kat Von D.
Gregg has been using Sequential instruments since he was a kid — his relationship with Sequential started when he bought a second-hand TOM drum machine. Mr.Pharmacist refers to his style and genre as “Moth,” referring to being one part Mod and one part Goth. He draws his influences from the soundtrack music of Blade Runner and John Carpenter, and the post-punk sounds of Suicide, Fad Gadget, and Cabaret Votaire.
We chatted with Gregg on how he’s using the Rev2, Prophet X, and OB-6 in his recordings:
What made you choose Sequential?
The legacy of the Prophet. I never had access to a Prophet when I was getting into music, but always heard how amazing the Prophet-5 was. Got a TOM drum machine when I was about 12 and loved it! Had a band that was inspired by Joy Division, Suicide, and Sisters of Mercy. We played the talent show in 11th grade and covered New Order (there’s a video somewhere).
How are you using the instruments?
Recently, I had been playing with “The Gossip” for their reunion and brought along my Rev2 all through Europe, and it was the main synth I used. Currently, I’ve started playing and recording with tattoo artist and all around lovely human; Kat Von D. We added a Prophet X to the mix and are looking to get an OB-6. Mostly I make my own sounds; some start with a preset and then I go from there. Before all that, I did a record with Alan Vega (of Suicide), before he passed, and it had some Prophet on it as well.
What are some of your favorite things about them?
Well, first off, the filters, they have a perfect warmth to them. There are a lot of musicians I know that dig VSTs (virtual synths), but that’s never been my thing. When I was a kid I saw Blade Runner and the sound of the synthesizer was like another character, it had such a huge role in that film. So, for me, Dave Smith’s instruments have always tapped into to that warm, analog, human-meets-machine feeling. It’s the same feeling I got from Kraftwerk, Depeche Mode, New Order, Suicide, Fad Gadget, etc. The second is the functionality and build, they just look classic. Then of course, the workflow is so intuitive. We have been using the Rev2 a lot on this Kat record and also the X. They just are timeless synthesizers.
What do they give you that other synths might not?
Well, the sound is unique and familiar at the same time. Most of the synth records I was raised on had the Prophet-5 all over it. So I would say a familiar, timeless, classic sound, with a great workflow for musicians.
Any interesting tricks or techniques you would like to share?
Great question, I am still learning and remain teachable with the synths. To me, I turn it on and put my hands on the keys and see what happens. The Prophet X is like a soundtrack machine, you have two instrument layers and two oscillators so you can create a sound that’s unique anytime! Thank you, Dave Smith for bringing the universe the Prophet!
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