In this interview by Eric Chasalow, composer Morton Subotnick discusses the origin of the original Buchla Music Box (Series 100), commissioned by Subotnick & fellow electronic music pioneer Ramon Sender.
Subotnick and Sender, along with Pauline Oliveros, founded the San Francisco Tape Music Center in 1962.
Subotnick explains that funding for the Buchla was initially rejected, because it was thought that interest in electronic music making was so limited that there was no need for another electronic music studio.
Note also that Subotnick was ultimately able to get funding for the first Buchla, because the cost – $500 – was so modest.
In the following video, via Waveshaper Media, Subotnick and Sender revisit the first Buchla 100 at its home at Mills College. They talk with Professor Maggi Payne, co-director of the Center of Contemporary Music, who shares the story of when Don Buchla visited, and offered to buy the vintage system back: