Gershon Kingsley

Gershon Kingsley, actually Götz Gustav Ksinski ( born October 28, 1922 in Bochum ) is a Jewish German - American composer. His most famous work is the resultant in the early phase of electronic pop music 1969 composition popcorn. He was leader of the band First Moog Quartet, as well as the first person that started the Moog synthesizer in live performance. His compositions are diverse and vary between avant-garde and pop.


Kingsley was born in Bochum. He grew up in Berlin. In 1938 he fled from Nazi Germany to Palestine. He lived and worked on a kibbutz, learned to play the piano and performed with local jazz bands around Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. Kingsley studied in Jerusalem and went in 1946 in the United States. After his success with popcorn he returned to Germany and worked in Munich mainly as a film and commercial composer. Since the late 1990s, he lives in New York. The parents emigrated to Cuba in 1939 in the United States.


Kingsley's career as a pop musician began with the release of the album The In Sound from Way Out, which he recorded together with Jean -Jacques Perrey. The duo Perrey - Kingsley took later also Kaleidoscopic Vibrations: Spotlight on the Moog, and then went their separate ways. Kingsley created with Music to Moog By a classic Moog album that contains mostly cover versions of songs by well-known artists such as The Beatles, Beethoven, and Simon and Garfunkel. His next work called First Moog Quartet is a collection of live recordings of his nationwide tour and uses four Moog synthesizers. Some of these compositions have a much more experimental nature, as Kingsley spoken word and beat poetry and uses these underlaid with artificial alien noises and sounds. However, Kingsley was not the Moog synthesizer, but was a pioneer, what using the first Fairlight and Synclavier Digital Synthesizer concerned.

Gershon Kingsley also wrote theme songs for television ZDF, as for the pyramid, the series Merlin and Babbelgamm.


The most famous and successful version of his synthesizer instrumentals popcorn dates back to the year 1972 by Hot Butter and was in Germany and Switzerland, a number-one hit and international top ten. Also in 1972 came the Pop -Corn Makers ( 7th place) and Anarchic System ( 13th) with popcorn in the German charts. In 2005 it was again a world hit by Crazy Frog.