Macho Zapp – Needle Habit


Some of the finest recent Ransom Note contributions (besides the infamous Tonkagate scandal) have been penned by the magnificent Mr Dan Leach, e-commuting all the way in from Manchester. Dan has now set up his very own website on which he'll be adding a cracking long-form article on a monthly basis, equipped with some brilliant visuals that'll keep you on high alert. Head over to Macho Zapp to get a taste of what Dan has to offer.

To whet your appetite, we've got a sneaky segment of his most recent post 'Needle Habit' right here;

HEAD engineer Bob Kita leans on his desk in Shure’s HQ in Chicago. He has a problem – converting their Stereo Dynetic phonograph cartridge to a 15-degree angle cannot be done. They will have to build an entirely new one.

It’s 1964 and Kita and his team are about to produce the needle of choice for turntablists and hip-hop DJs 20 years into the future – the M44-7. Fast-forward half-a-century and, incredibly, this same cartridge is still favoured by top DJs and sound-engineers around the world.

Popularised by one musical invention, the jukebox, and then resuscitated by another in hip-hop and, more specifically, turntablism, this is the story of how a classic piece of American engineering survived the tidal wave of five decades of technological change.

Read the full article over on