Windsor

Windsor man hopes to bring classic Birotron keyboard back to life

A Windsor man hopes to restore a rare instrument that was once on the wish list of some of the top rock musicians in the world.

A Windsor man hopes to restore a rare instrument that was once on the wish list of some of the top rock musicians in the world.

The instrument is called a Birotron. And while you may never have heard of it, it was a big deal when it was first conceived.

"John Lennon wanted one," said Chris Dale, a session musician and schoolteacher who has a Birotron and hopes to bring it back to working order.

Dale said it was something that Paul McCartney, Led Zeppelin and even Captain and Tenille wanted, too.

A close-up of the Birotron keyboard that Windsor's Chris Dale is hoping to restore. (CBC)

"The Birotron was seen as the first sampler that you could actually make your own tapes with," said Dale.

Alas, the Birotron didn't end up making its mark on music in the way that some maybe thought it would.

"Only three bands ever got one, which were Yes, Tangerine Dream and Earthstar, and even they only used it buried in the mix, so it was this interesting sound, interesting instrument that never had its chance to be heard, really," said Dale.

Dale is looking to raise $60,000 to bring his Birotron back to its former glory, though with only $1,000 raised so far, he's still got a long way to go.

With a report from the CBC's Shaun Malley

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