Justin graciously let me borrow his Roland TR-808 and when trying to program some patterns I noticed a few problems. A) I'm clearly too stupid to work this machine – I eventually figured it out but off the bat, both the Pattern knob the Auto Fill In knob were double teaming my brain and left me staring at shifting patterns that mocked me with changing tempos. B) The sequencing buttons themselves have been accumulating grime over the years which makes it difficult to activate a note. I would gladly take this thing apart and clean it but it's not mine. C) It's outdated. While the interface is preferred for many people, I'd rather do this on a computer or something more flexible like a Machinedrum. Long story short, I decided to sample it and save people the hassle of finding/buying one. Oh yeah and it's free.
Compressors are complex tools and, like most other audio engineering tools, there are more ways to set them up ‘wrong’ than there are to set them up ‘right’. If you’re careful though, you won’t fall into these common traps.
There are those who will throw away their old record covers but there are those that will use them to create some mind blowing artistic stuff.
One of them is definitely Christian Marclay, a New York visual artist, DJ and composer who used record covers of Michael Jackson , Doors, Donna Summer, David Bowie and many others for this piece of art. The relationship of sound, vision, music, art and performance is the focus of his work.
It's hard to believe another weekend is upon us, but it is, so here are some more free samples to get your weekend off to a good start. This time, it's a set of 21 24-bit synthetic percussion sounds I made on my Sequential Pro One
Say you’re an up-and-coming crew with a turntable and some mics. You’ve got a gig this Friday at the middle school gym (the janitor has been bribed appropriately) and the boys on the corner have been passing out your flyers to all the lovely ladies. Everything’s set, except you heard that Kool Herc is coming to battle. Herc and his mighty sound system schooled you last go-round, so you know you need something fresh to rock the bodies proper. Your DIY solution? The 55-gallon drum sound system.
The Control Centre has posted a sample pack features 38 piano samples in 44k 16 bit mono format.
This samplepack contains 3 pianos I recorded to tape in 1998. A Baby Grand, a Fender Rhodes and an old upright a friend of mine had in her back kitchen. I recorded the pianos using a Tascam 244 Cassette Portastudio and a Shure SM58 microphone. The Fender Rhodes was recorded to tape directly from it's line output. The recordings were then sampled using a Yamaha A3000 sampler.
I recently exported the samples from the A3000 sampler to my laptop computer via floppy disk, and then imported them into Ableton Live's Sampler. To save each piano into your Live Library, load the project, then save each sampler as a preset inside Sampler's preset browser. Live will copy the samples to your library automatically.
If you don't have Live 8 and Sampler, you can still use the samples to recreate these pianos in your choice of software.
The "Octapult" is a kinetic sculpture designed and built on commission by Bradley N. Litwin of Philadelphia, PA. With 8 synchronized catapults, 160 plastic balls per minute are launched, caught, and recirculated. Made mostly of wood, the work is ~36 inches in diameter. On permanent display in the lobby of Lower Merion Elementary School, Merion Station, PA. Also a performing jazz musician, more of Litwin's work may be seen and heard at www.bradlitwin.com.
XEROWorld is the next phase in the evolution of online arts & entertainment — a totally new and unique web destination that seamlessly integrates social networking, interactive events, magazine style-news, and online malls.
Kyle Evans modified a didgeridoo to experiment in the combination of the organic sound qualities of a didgeridoo with the advanced signal processing capabilities of modern computer programming and sound synthesis. He writes:
This custom built didgeridoo features externally mounted modules that allow the performer to process and manipulate the sound of the instrument in real time. All control data is transmitted wirelessly via blue tooth and is controlling several audio processes created in a custom-built software environment.
Synchronization is, by definition, a tough thing to do. But musical engineering is replete with challenges; it’s no longer acceptable to simply say “live with it” and walk away. It seems we need both better shared knowledge about what sync is how to make it work, and better engineering solutions on the software and protocols side to support the way users want to work. And yes, we need a new sync standard that goes beyond what’s presently available in MIDI alone
Tunited is a groundbreaking new independent music website which will assist new and independent artists and labels gain increased exposure, challenging the flagging music business’ growing reluctance to invest in this exciting area.
The top 100 artists will upload their music catalogue onto the website prior to launch; it will then be made available to the press and music industry for showcasing before the site goes live.
To become a profile artist, please click on the button below to enter your details and upload your track before midnight on 11.12.09. Your music will be judged by Tunited's panel of experts including Midge Ure OBE.
Josh made a LED sign which displays voicemails from his Google Voice account.
I made the LED sign following instructions from this tutorial on Nerdkits.com. The hardware is some LED’s, a nerdkit, a piece of cardboard and a bit of wire that I got from some Cat 5 cable laying around. I cut out the cardboard and printed a grid to help me lay out the LED’s. I think mine were 1 cm apart. The soldering took forever and it was the first real time I did any soldering so it looks kinda crappy. Oh well. It works. The sign itself is powered by a 9 volt battery and receives data from my laptop through the serial port via a USB adapter. All that stuff was included in the Nerdkit when I bought it. The microcontroller is running code from the tutorial I mentioned earlier. One of these days I’m going to make an enclosure for this thing.
Mark Mosher of the excellent Modulate This! blog has released REBOOT, a new album featuring some great electronic music.
Mark Mosher is an electronic music artist from Louisville Colorado just outside of Boulder. He is a BMI recording artist and composes and produces electronic music and sound completely in the digital realm using state-of-the-art virtual synthesizers and instruments within Ableton Live.
Two years in the making, REBOOT is an album containing 7 richly layered electronica songs that blend contemporary synthesizer sounds with classical music motifs. The end result is dark electronica for those who love synth "ear candy" with a “dirty” industrial edge.
While the songs on REBOOT stand alone as singles, the collection is an album in the true sense of the word. They share a common palette and when played in sequence conjure an epic and dynamic story for the listener.
Prior to the release of the album, the first three tracks were released as singles. "Midnight" and "Stealth" went to #1 and "They Walk Among Us" went to #2 on the Soundclick.com electronica charts.
REBOOT is available to download at Bandcamp. The album is currently being offered using the “pay what you will” model. Although the suggested pricing is $6 for the 7 song album + digital booklet and $1 for singles, users can name their own price including specifying 0$ for free downloads. There are future plans to make the album available on iTunes and Amazon’s MP3 store.
I have started working on what I am calling "RAM Music" after my previous exploration of EPROM Music. In many ways, this is an extension of EPROM Music, as it shares many traits. In particular, this idea of manipulating digital sound directly, without the need for pre-programmed parts, or anything that computes (such as a microcontroller).
Filter control via light blob tracking in Processing This video shows how I can set and control a filter's parameters via MIDI mapping, creating a control surface via a webcam and a torch. I realized a little Processing sketch that tracks the light blob I shot in front of webcam, normalizes X and Y coordinates to MIDI acceptable values, and then sends them to a filter effect in Ableton Live. I also realized the little control panel that allows to correctly make the MIDI mapping and set some blob detection's params. My toolkit: Processing MIDI
It’s been a while since we had a celebrity saying things that didn’t really make sense. It’d be unfair to ask Ricardo Villalobos live up to some of the titans – Bob Dylan saying CDs have “no stature” and “have sound all over them,” and Elton’ John’s classic call to “tear down the Internet.” (Not to mention, in the end I think we wound up agreeing with them and turned Elton’s quote into a brand-new verb.) As with Elton John and Bob Dylan, I love and respect Villalobos’ work, no less so as he says things with which I disagree. But Ricardo Villalobos does get special credit for claiming in a recent Resident Advisor interview, among other things, that what has really hurt sound quality today is the lack of cheap drum machines from the 80s, because they were analog. Or they weren’t, but it was as if they were. Or something. (If you think this might earn some ire from Ableton loyalists, you’re right.)
Are old digital drum machines better than your Ableton Live?
Plugins are great, they’re very close to the real hardware counterparts, sometimes better. I don’t want to debate that. This article is all about options for getting electrons flowing through gear to get better mixes.
There are very few (if any) professional mixing engineers that work 100% ITB (in the box), at some point you’ll need to get outside.
Andrea Bianchi, a Ph.D. student at the Graduate School of Culture Technology (GSCT) in the Korean Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), South Korea, wrote in to report about a homebrew music application named Drummer for the Nintendo DS which was presented at the NIME 2009 conference (New Interfaces for Musical Expression).
It is basically a collaborative musical instrument, where multiple Nintendo DS users can play individually on their devices in order to collaborate on a track. Tracks can be recorded simultaneously, one per user. The project tries to bridge mobile interfaces with collaborative music instruments (usually constrained by the need of physical proximity among players), in order to create a collaborative instrument for the stage.
The system is based on client-server architecture over a wireless network; every client runs on a Nintendo DS -one of the most popular wireless handheld game devices with touch-screen functionality- while the server computer handles the clients’ requests and plays matching drum sounds with the software synthesizer.
Each user can take advantage of this small and intuitive pen-based device in order to create or customize a drum kit, and then perform together with other users simply by tapping and sliding the pen on the screen.
Sebastian Tomczak offers yet another pack of lovely samples.
I’ve made a C64 sample pack. To be precise, it’s a sample pack, featuring every C and G note from C-2 to G 6 for the main basic waveforms of a Commodore 64 (8580 SID chip). The waveforms are triangle, sawtooth, pulse and noise. The duty cycle for the pulse wave was set to approximately 50%. The samples were recorded from C64 hardware directly using a custom designed interface.
The samples are available for download in wav and mp3 formats.
Arduinos are awesome – with one simple controller, you can make almost anything! What new things can you make with Arduino? We've teamed up with the creative folks at Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories and the Arduino Team on an Arduino contest to find out.
The rules are simple: to enter you must make a new Instructable that involves the Arduino IDE. You can use any hardware that you like, or none at all. Be sure to provide the code you used so that others can follow in your footsteps. Make something amazing and win a sweet Meggy Jr RGB from Evil Mad Science or an Arduino Mega from the Arduino Team to power your next project!
So what are you waiting for? Document a project you've been meaning to write up, or make something new! We can't wait to see what it is.
Rockstar Games has launched the Beaterator and MySpace Music Challenge, a contest for the recently released music application Beaterator for PSP system. The aim of the Challenge is to highlight emerging artists using the Beaterator platform as a tool for music production. The Challenge winner will receive a cash prize of $5,000!
Artists that are chosen as semi-finalists will have the opportunity to have two songs featured on the Challenge promotion page, where MySpace Music and Rockstar Games fans will be able to check out the competition and vote on their favorite songs. The first song will be your “featured song” — the one that you feel best represents your sound. The second song will be one that you create using Beaterator, which can be an original track, remix, or other song that showcases your use of the Beaterator software. The winning artist or band will receive $5,000, have their winning track featured on the PlayStation®Network – which is visited by millions of PlayStation owners every day, and they will also have the opportunity to be featured on the MySpace homepage.
Beaterator is a music-making application for PSP system that acts as a portable 8-track music studio. In addition to the 3,000 included loops, it features a drum machine, full keyboard, synthesizer and sequencer; as well as the ability to import any sound via either a Memory Stick Duo™ or the PSP system’s built-in microphone. This is a true portable music studio.
For our sixth instalment, our musical microscope has fallen on drum 'n' bass. This may be a genre that had its big moment in the mainstream more than a decade ago, but it continues to thrive and its influence is felt on the likes of grime, dubstep and ghettotech.
Gijs Gieskes uses the video ram of a Sega as an audio source.
The video ram of the sega gets slowed down by a binary counter, so it can be used as a audio source.
There are 3 oscillators that control a multiplexer, the multiplexer connects 1 out of 8 patch cables to the binary counters input, so there are some nice changing patterns in the sound. Another multiplexer is connected to the same oscillators and makes some extra connections to glitch some more video.
There is a magnetic patch bay for the video ram, and the sega controller on the front can also be connected with magnets or metal wands. The original idea was that the device can be used for drums, buts more a synth.. In another version i will probably build a small sequencer into it..
I will probably mainly use it for exhibitions, it is allot of fun to play with, because you control the sound and the video at the same time.
Orange Tree Samples' official blog will include articles, tutorials, videos, product demonstrations, artist interviews, and much more.
Subjects include everything from tips and tricks for using Orange Tree Samples libraries to instructions on how to create your own sample libraries! "Fresh Squeezed" will also discuss the sample library industry's latest technologies as well as explore sampling in pursuit of greater realism. Hopefully this will prove to be a useful resource for Orange Tree Samples customers as well as sample library users and computer musicians in general.
It’s simply stunning some of the terrific instrument and effect plug-ins available that are now free and open source – yes, free as in freedom, not just freeware. I had commented in the past something along the lines of, “boy, wouldn’t it be great if this now meant, say, a Linux port?” and then went on the business of my daily life, which tends not to include re-compiling plug-ins. But now, the folks of JUCETICE have been busy doing just that, serving up delicious instrument and effect goodness, running native on Linux.
It was constructed a year ago as a third birthday present, and has recently come back to me for some 'refurbishment' – fresh batteries and some glue to fix LEDs that have been pushed into the box. Not too bad after a year with a small child!
Sebastian Tomczak recorded a sample pack from a YM2413 chip.
The sample pack consists on 245 samples. These are:
5 drum sounds
16 sounds per instrument, across 15 preset instruments
In the case of all of the pitched sounds, the samples include every C and G pitch from C-2 to G6 (16 in total). Every even-numbered file is a G. Every odd-numbered file is a C. Samples are available in wav and mp3.
Casper Electronics’ Echo Bender is an echo, distortion and experimental, stand alone noise generator. It’s capable of creating smooth, clean echos as well as delving deep into screeching, noisy realms seldom heard from a traditional echo pedal.
Echo Bender V2 features
True bypass foot switch
Effect activation indicator LED
9 volt DC Power jack
9 Volt Battery compartment
1/4″ Switching input jack (conserves battery power by switching off power when plug is empty)
1/4″ Output jack
External power supply included. Input 120AC, output 9Volts DC. 200mA