Beginner’s guide to Jean Michel Jarre

A beginner’s guide to Jean Michel Jarre albums. Useful and pleasant reading at the time.

Music for stowaways

Now largely retired and often forgotten, the grandfather of electronic music once made an enormous dent on the world of music by ignoring the typical trappings of success and just noodling on synths a bit. Never afraid to be a little cheesy, his music blends classical elements, synthesised atmospherics, and a whole lot of concept.

Key moments

Oxygène(Part IV), and perhaps also Part II have been hiding at the back of your consciousness for decades even if you hadn’t realised. Best known for his spectacular live shows where he lights up entire cities with lasers and fireworks, or perhaps for being the first Western musician to perform in China.

Where to start

Jarre does have plenty of good compilations to pick from, but the edits will largely leave you feeling unsatisfied. So without question, start with the original Oxygène (1977). The 2007 reissue including the Live in Your…

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