Last month I went to Paris with a bunch of artists to work on an installation at the Palais de Tokyo museum. The structure in the picture is made mostly from salvaged materials, and it’s full of robotic musical instruments and noisemakers – all controlled through MIDI, the 30 year old protocol that will never die. Here’s a nice virtual tour of the thing.
Make music – or funny noises – with technology! On Saturday, February 16th, learn to make a soft and cuddly electronic synthesizer, and on Sunday the 17th, use the power of the LAZZZOR to make whistles and ocarinas!
Soft Circuits 2: The SofTone! Saturday, February 16, 2013 from 2PM – 5PM
Learn to use conductive thread and fabric with an inexpensive microcontroller to turn a piece of cloth into a simple electronic synthesizer. No electronics, programming, or sewing experience is necessary – but I’m hoping some embroiderers will take this class and really make something beautiful! All materials are included. Here’s a video:
Laser Whistles: Sunday, February 17, 2013 from 2PM – 5PM
Just like our regular laser class, only more whistly. In this class, you’ll learn the principles of the computer-aided laser cutter, what materials are safe to cut, and how to create your designs in Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape. Plus you’ll learn how whistles work, and design and fabricate your own! After you’ve taken this class, you’re qualified to use the laser cutter at a discounted rate at NYC Resistor’s open nights. All materials are included, but please bring a laptop with Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape. Here’s some of the whistles we made in a previous class:
Composer / sound artist / improviser Tuna Pase is visiting us from Istanbul. Come jam with her at NYC Resistor this Saturday, January 19th, 5-8pm! It’s free, but please get the details and RSVP at eventbrite.
Tuna Pase is a music lover and creator of music based in Istanbul. Her musical journey began when she heard the “timbre of the flute” in the orchestra pit for the first time. Her areas of interest are electro-acoustic composition, improvisation, sound design, sound art, song writing and ethnomusicology. She plays electronics, flute, percussive objects and sings. Her music is inspired from sleeping, dreams, food, nature, poetry, photography, street art, bicycles, Istanbul, Jerusalem and Eastern hemisphere. She performs her electroacoustic compositions and songs in an improvised manner, where she “re-composes” them live using the elements that build those compositions. Her main point of performance and composition is based on improvisation which she sees her way of making music and collaborating with other musicians.
P.S. if you can help with the technical aspects of setting up the jam, if you have a mixer or 1/4″ audio cables you can loan, please contact ranjit at moonmilk.com.
I just finished Pentametron: a twitter bot that sifts through about 5 million tweets a day, collecting just the ones that happen to be in iambic pentameter. The result is a sort of collective nonsense poem from the internet’s endless flows of language. You can follow Pentametron in realtime on twitter – @pentametron – or read the collected tweets in sonnet form at pentametron.com, updated several times per hour.
Pentametron is written in PHP and uses @fennb’s Phirehose library to access twitter’s streaming API at a rate of 40-60 tweets per second.
This is Bre Pettis playing a homemade 8-bit-style violin.
And this is where you can get plans and instructions to make your own!
There’s still two workshops left in the noisy noise series!
Do you like making funny noises? I do, and every February I try to make a new handmade musical instrument or noisemaker every day of the month. To celebrate 2011’s noisy noises, I’m hosting classes every Saturday in February.
Electric Junk Guitar – Saturday, February 5, from 1-4 PM
Make a primitive guitar out of scrap wood, wind your own guitar pickup, plug into an amp and rock out!
Laser Whistles – Saturday, February 12, from 1-4 PM
Learn how to use the laser cutter by making wooden whistles, recorders, or ocarinas.
Fun with Sensors – Saturday, February 19, from 1-3 PM
Assemble vibration, light, and magnetic sensors and use them to pick up hidden sounds from the environment and to hear objects and musical instruments in a new way.
Handmade Electronic Noise – Saturday, February 26, from 1-4 PM
Make simple synthesizers and sequencers from dirt-cheap integrated circuits.
Click on any of the class links for more information or to sign up. (As an extra incentive, if you attend three or more of these classes, I’ll sneak you in for free to any one future class I personally teach at NYC Resistor in 2011.)
Junk guitar video from NPR’s Science Friday
“In order to play the theme 840 times in succession, it would be advisable to prepare oneself beforehand, and in the deepest silence, by serious immobilities.”
In the 1890s, Erik Satie wrote a very short piece called Vexations, with a note suggesting that it should be played 840 times in a row. That’s a challenge, right? Jack Straw Productions in Seattle is putting on a Vexations marathon this weekend, starting Saturday at 4pm Pacific time, with more than 30 pianists playing non-stop through the night until they reach #840, and you can listen in on Hollow Earth Radio. It’s a great idea, but we have machines to do our dirty work for us, so the robot toy piano is going to play Vexations at NYC Resistor 840 times, or until it falls apart. It’ll start at 7PM (Eastern time) this Saturday, and you can watch and listen online, or in person on Saturday at the Halfway-to-Halloween Party, or on Sunday at the Vexations Meetup & Jam Session.
Yes, on Sunday (May 16) from 3-6PM, join other music nerds to jam along to Vexations until your head explodes, or we reach #840, whichever comes first. Bring instruments if you want. (Bring your own 1/4″ cables, if your instrument is electronic. Inputs are limited so if you can bring a small mixer to share, that would help!) Feel free to bring vexing drinks or snacks to share. NYC Resistor is at 87 3rd Avenue, 4th Floor, in Brooklyn.
As long as you’re in the neighborhood on Sunday, consider going to Share at ISSUE Project Room (3rd Av & 3rd St), a weekly open jam session for experimental music! When we get sick of Vexations, we’ll take a dinner break and head over there.
The radio show Science Friday made this nice video at our Junk Guitar workshop last month. Thanks to Shelley and Flora from Science Friday, and to all the participants in the workshop!
Thanks to everyone who came and built lanterns at tonight’s workshop – great work! Below the jump, a few pictures.
Lantern festival’s this Sunday, 3:30 til sunset, near Picnic House in Prospect Park, Brooklyn. Bring friends, kids, dogs, and lanterns (electric only – no fire allowed in the park). We’ll have snacks and hot cider… and lanterns. All the details are here.