When Deals Go Bad: Buchla vs BEMI

Buchla, the man who is known as the co-inventor of control voltage just sued Buchla Electronic Musical Instruments (BEMI). The reasons for it are fairly standard breach of contract. Buchla was owed money, BEMI did not pay. So Buchla wants his company back.

This is not all to uncommon in the world of synthesizers, founders selling their companies, and regaining their names. Names appearing on multiple products. Dave Smith recently regained the rights to Sequential Circuits, and Moog did the same with Big Briar when he was alive. Serge of course is so complicated it would take an entire post to dedicated to that subject.

Buchla though has had a run of bad luck which is borderline legendary. First selling his company to CBS, then re-founding it, closing shop, only to re-open it again, and then later re-selling it recently. Now wanting to once again gain it back because of this breach of contract action.

I think the most likely outcome is this will get settled out of court. But it will just be another chapter in the rocky history of synthesizer companies and founders.