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10 great songs made with the Bob Moog Google Doodle

The latest Google Doodle, created to commemorate synthesizer inventor Bob Moog's birthday, allows users to play and record their own songs. Here's a list of the best we've listened to so far.

By Megan Riesz / May 23, 2012

Users can use a mouse to click each key and change the dials or opt for a keyboard instead.

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Google’s first Doodle was an Impressionist sketch of the company’s logo, created by Dennis Hwang in 2004. Since then, Google has upped the ante by devising interactive Doodles that put visitors in charge. 

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Users have previously been able to strum a Les Paul guitar and play a quick round of Pac-Man – now, you can play and record songs via Bob Moog’s synthesizer.

Robert “Bob” Moog sparked a musical movement that has been described as “assertive, bouncy, exotically wheezy and occasionally explosive.”

In other words, he is the inventor of the synthesizer. His creation lent a hand to the explosion of musical genres such as disco and electronic music in the form of Donna Summer and the soundtrack from the futuristic Stanley Kubrick film, “A Clockwork Orange.”

This latest Doodle has inspired musicians (and quite a few talented amateurs) to tinker with Google’s homage, which includes oscillators and filters and a 25-key keyboard. We’ve compiled a list of the best examples of songs posted on YouTube and Google+, ranging from movie theme songs to the work of a classical composer. To get started on a song of your own, see our guide to the Doodle.
 
1. "Summer" by Vanessa James
 
YouTube user barabas89 got more than 11,000 hits for this take on composer Vanessa James’ number. Barabas89 recorded separate parts of the song and layered them with some editing, culminating in a sophisticated example of what the Doodle can do.

 
2. "The Imperial March" from “Star Wars
 
It’s one of the most easily recognizable movie themes, even when played on a small keyboard. YouTube user willdsgn put together a 20-second clip of the song most often associated with Darth Vader and the evil Empire.

 
3.  "Happy Birthday"
 
Considering that the Doodle was made to celebrate Robert Moog’s birthday, a take on the “Happy Birthday” song seems appropriate. YouTube user EversonFreitas22 recorded a quick homage to Moog infused with the typical electronic vibrations of any synthesizer.

 
4. "Tetris" theme
 
One of the most popular video game songs ever, the Tetris music is ingrained in the minds of GameBoy enthusiasts. YouTube user joshntx compiled a 50-second version of the puzzle game’s upbeat theme song.

 
5. “Canon in C" by Johann Pachelbel
 
And some say classical music is dead. Despite Moog’s synthesizer being one of the most modern musical inventions to date, YouTube user askymoon made a simple clip of one of the most famous orchestral pieces in history.

 
6. "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" from “The Lion King
 
In one of the most beloved Disney movies, Simba and Nala sing a sweet love duet when they see each other for the first time in years. ­With music and lyrics by Elton John and Tim Rice, the song won the 1994 Academy Award for Best Original Song – and now, it’s come to Google’s latest Doodle.

(Listen to the recording here.)
 
7. "Main Title (The Godfather Waltz)" from “The Godfather
 
Italian composer Nino Rota’s waltz arouses memories of watching the Corleone family sink themselves deeper and deeper into trouble in Francis Ford Coppola’s classic film series – even with one listen of this synthesized recording.

(Listen to the recording here.)
 
8. “Tubular Bells" from “The Exorcist
 
YouTube user lappingthesun’s approximation of one of the scariest film’s theme song is enough to send chills down your spine. “When I played the song it was ok,” the video description reads, “but then [i]t played back weird and different every time with the player so I found the best version of the riff and I [l]ooped it.”

 
9. "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star"
 
For budding musicians, this English lullaby is often one of the first songs to learn. For those experimenting with the latest hands-on Google Doodle, it’s an easy tune that has yielded a product worthy of praise (in YouTube user CErixsson’s case).

 
10. "Hey Jude" by The Beatles
 
Even without the voices of John, Paul, George, and Ringo, “Hey Jude” is a model song. YouTube user MattStottmann, who calls himself a “manipulator of sound and creator of sonic texture” on his Twitter, recorded a nearly three-minute take on one of the most famous songs to come out of The Beatles’ 10-year existence.

What are your favorite recordings of the Bob Moog Google Doodle? Let us know in the comments section below.

For more tech news, follow us on Twitter @venturenaut.

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