Potential Artifact at ICMC

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I will be premiering a new piece called Potential Artifact on Monday, September 28th at the ICMC conference in Denton, Texas. The piece is a structured improvisation that makes use of a broken violin processed through Pure Data and a custom controller. I’m hoping to have my prototyped Raspberry Pi synth completed in time to use for the performance.

Raspberry Pi Synthesizer

Pi Synth Prototype

This summer I’ve been working on a prototype for a low-cost, Raspberry Pi-based synthesizer that is completely self-contained and ready for performance. The prototype uses a Raspberry Pi B+ computer and the built-in GPIO pins to provide controller inputs. No external micro-controller is necessary. Pure Data is the software engine behind the instrument which provides a never ending array of sonic possibilities. The goal of the project is to provide an updated instrument for my own performances and to provide an update to the system I’ve been using in my Networked Music Performance class at CalArts. For now I’ve been focussing on creating an audio synthesizer but a video synthesizer that uses the same hardware is also in the works. One goal for the project is to basically create a hardware “shell” that can be flashed with different software configurations for audio (Pure Data) and video (Python, PiCamera). The hardware, 16 buttons, 8 knobs and 8 sliders, will be installed in a custom case that will house the Raspberry Pi, provide a stereo audio connector and access to the USB ports for WiFi connectivity and battery operation possibilities.

Marshweed in the Garden at Jam at the Barn

Marshweeds Garden

Heather Lockie and I will be premiering some of the songs from the upcoming Marshweed in the Garden record that we’ve been working on for about a year. We are very excited but also a little nervous since we’re both a little out of our musical safety zones. I’ve been forced to use Ableton Live for backing tracks and Heather will have to perform to a click track on a couple of tunes. Oh the horror! Here’s a link to the Facebook Event

Embedded below is a demo mix of Findr Keepr from the upcoming Marshweed in the Garden record.

Networked Ensemble at DogStar 11

Hub Jr

“Hub Jr”, is a newly formed networked computer music ensemble located in Los Angeles comprised of composers Casey Anderson, Scott Cazan, David Paha, Stephanie Smith and myself. The name Hub Jr is temporary and is an homage to the networked computer music ensemble The Hub. We are currently going through the process of picking a name for the ensemble. Each of us studied at CalArts with Mark Trayle who was one of the founding members of The Hub and was a big influence on each of our own musical pathways. With Mark’s sudden passing this past Spring, we were asked to organize a concert for the DogStar Orchestra concert series featuring Mark’s music. We decided the Dogstar concert on May 19th would be our premiere performance as an ensemble. We performed two pieces on the concert. The first piece, Pins and Splits was a networked composition that Mark wrote and the second was a free improvisation that we performed in Mark’s honor. Check out the live recording below:

Pi Speaker photo gallery

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The photo gallery below shows the process of building eight Pi Speakers over the course of a couple of weeks in the Summer of 2014.

PiAV Demo No.1

PiAv Demo No.2

PiAV premieres in the WaveCave gallery

My eight channel audio-visual installation PiAV premiere’s tomorrow in the WaveCave gallery at CalArts. The piece will be running from September 1st to September 9th. I have the pleasure of being the very first artist to present work in the newly created gallery space that is dedicated to sound works.

PiAV Info

Audio-Visual Installation at ICMC

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I will be premiering a new audio-visual installation titled PiAV at this years International Computer Music Conference in Athens, Greece from September 14th through September, 20th 2014.

PiAV is an immersive multi-sensory environment created using twelve Raspberry Pi computers. I have created a portable 8-channel sound environment using custom made speaker boxes, networked Raspberry Pi computers, OSC and Pure Data. In addition I have created a 2-channel video-feedback and motion tracking system using four Raspberry Pi computers, Raspberry Pi camera modules, OSC and a custom Python script. Since the Rasperry Pi computers are so small the whole system is completely portable and only requires a gallery space, a wifi connection (I can bring an ethernet hub if necessary), two video projectors and power.

PiAV is an installation that can be observed and is also participatory but in a subtle way. In its more static form PiAV makes use of quiet sin waves that are tuned in a unique just-intonation scale and activate the space through subtle beatings. Meanwhile two channels of abstracted video images are generated using very simple digital processing inspired by traditional analog video feedback techniques. The system is cross-polinated whereby the ever-changing combinations of pitches (clusters) influence the video feedback system and the colors and the amount of motion within the video influence the audio parameters creating a meta feedback system. Two additional Raspberry Pis are used for simple motion tracking of the gallery space. When viewers/listeners enter the environment their movements are tracked providing another subtle input to the audio-visual system which cues interaction and participation.

Raspberry Pi Workshop at Machine Project

Raspberry Pi workshop

I will be teaching a three day Raspberry Pi workshop at Machine Project on Tuesday, July 29th, Thursday, July 31st, and Tuesday, August 5th, 2014. The workshop will focus on using the Raspberry Pi camera module with an emphasis on basic video and audio applications.

In this workshop we will cover getting started with Raspberry Pi computers with an emphasis on working with HD video playback, using the camera module and getting started with sound output using Pure Data. Technically inclined audio-visual artists are encouraged to attend but anyone with a general curiosity about the Raspberry Pi and Linux is welcome. The first class session will focus on getting the Raspberry Pi up and running which will include: installing the system, configuring a WIFI module, and running basic commands

The second class meeting will cover playing back HD video files with a Raspberry Pi and using the camera module to capture HD videos to disk, creating a Python script to make a time-lapse camera capture device, and if time permits we will explore a RaspberryPi “Video Synth” that is remotely controlled from your laptop.

The third class will meeting will delve into using the Raspberry Pi’s built-in audio functions which will include: basic audio playback, installing Pure Data, and running Pure Data patches on a Raspberry pi.