Music

Tom Scholz: Sound Machine

Tom Scholz is one of those musicians whose role in rock history is easy to underestimate, but the accomplishments stack up. Scholz is the lead songwriter behind Boston, whose debut album stands at No. 12 on the RIAA's list of the best-selling albums of all time. Since it was released in 1976, Boston has gone 17 times platinum. The band, which placed four songs (including "More Than a Feeling," of course) in the Top 10 of Billboard's Hot 100, has become a classic-rock radio staple.

Scholz wasn't just responsible for Boston's tunes; he also invented the band's sound. Because he'd been trained as an engineer — he was employed at Polaroid before making Boston — he was able to create devices that brought to life the sounds in his head without having to translate them through a middle man. This ability has allowed Scholz to forge a second career away from the spotlight, making Rockman amps, pedals and other equipment.

In collaboration with Nova's The Secret Life of Scientists & Engineers and Seftel Productions, here's a rare look inside Scholz's studio and his world of sound.

Scholz, who says in the video that he's content to treat the rock star life like a fantasy he can dip into and out of, is dipping back in this summer, taking Boston out on a 66-date tour starting in June.

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