Synth pad

Synth pad

A synth pad is a sustained tone generated by a synthesizer, often employed for background harmony and atmosphere in much the same fashion that a string section is often used in acoustic music. Typically, a synth pad plays many whole or half notes, sometimes holding the same note while a lead voice sings or plays an entire musical phrase. Often, the sounds used for synth pads had a vaguely organ, string, or vocal timbre. Much popular music in the 1980s employed synth pads, this being the time of polyphonic synthesizers, as did the then-new styles of smooth jazz and new age music. One of many well-known songs from the era to incorporate a synth pad is "West End Girls" by the Pet Shop Boys, who were noted users of the technique. Synth pads continue to be widely used today.


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