In 1981, Jean Michel Jarre — considered a pioneer of Electronic, Synthpop and New Age music — became the first Western pop musician to play a concert in China following Mao’s revolution.

In the clip below, Jarre breaks the barrier and steps out into the audience with his Electro-Harmonix Mini Synthesizer, using it as a literal and figurative bridge between East and West:

Two years earlier, Electro-Harmonix founder Mike Matthews did the same in the USSR, at the first consumer trade show open to Western businesses:

(You can read more about EHX’s 1979 trip to Russia here.)

So, first came the USSR. Then came China. Consider this a warning, North Korea: you’re next.

Leave a Reply