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Möbius Music Box

Sunday, August 9th, 2009

Hey, remember that music box kit I was playing with a few months ago? Vi Hart had the brilliant idea of twisting the paper into a Möbius strip! This effectively doubles the length of the music and presents an interesting compositional challenge. Check out the video!

Musical Chess

Thursday, May 21st, 2009

You’re looking at a hybrid music/chess system that I’ve created, in preparation for a concert of new and experimental music in late June. The chessboard on the left (a Novag Citrine) is wired to the computer via a serial/USB cable. When people play on the chessboard, the computer monitors their moves, and attempts to figure […]

Composer seeks Chess Masters

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

I’ve been posting the above ad at local chess clubs in Los Angeles, in preparation for a June concert in which a live chess game will be translated into music. Contact me if you have leads. Thanks!

Whitney Music Box simulation

Thursday, April 9th, 2009

The music box disc I’m getting prepared, mentioned in the previous post, looks something like this. Here’s a simulation of what it would sound like, played on an antique Stella music box, assuming the box’s spring-wound mechanism has the strength to play the first chord, in which every tine sounds at the same time. It […]

HensTooth Discs

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

Composing for Mechanical Instruments

Sunday, April 5th, 2009

Oh, I’ve been bitten by this mechanical music bug big time. I’m now working on composing some new music for an orchestrion. This will be no mere weekend-long project (as most of mine tend to be), and hopefully I can share some audio snippets with you as work progresses. I imagine most of you don’t […]

Violano Virtuoso in Sylmar

Saturday, March 21st, 2009

Today, on the spur of the moment, I decided to visit the Nethercutt museum in Sylmar, which I had heard about a couple of years ago when I was researching automatic music instruments. The museum, an unexpected display of wealth that sits on the corner of an industrial park in an economically depressed area — […]

Etude in G Minor

Sunday, January 18th, 2009

Etude in G Minor, 1983 I thought it might be a good idea to catalog and record all my old piano pieces, many of which exist solely in my head, and haven’t been notated or recorded. “Etude in G Minor” is something I used to play a lot in 1983, during a period when I […]

Spiral Sequencer

Friday, October 10th, 2008

A new product, Reaktor Animated Circuits from Native Instruments has an interesting sequencer called Spiral (shown above) which was inspired by my Whitney Music Box. I’ve been playing with a version that Native Instruments sent me, and it’s pretty cool! If you’re interested in getting Animated Circuits, you’ll also need the latest version of Reaktor […]

Dark Side of the Whip

Friday, September 5th, 2008

It suddenly occured to me as I was driving to work yesterday that the songs “Crack that Whip” by Devo, and “Breathe” by Pink Floyd are oddly similar (did I mention it’s a loooong drive?)… So I downloaded the demo version of Ableton Live last night and came up with this mashup at 2 in […]