Experience Music Project

Sept 24, 2013

My friend Colin and I went to EMP this morning. We both became members at the dual price. We went and played a jam. I played a real drumset for the first time in my life. I've been practicing on my electronic drums for years but this was my first real drum set. I'm a natural. It's just like playing electronic drums but you have to play as lightly as possible in order to not hurt your ears. I didn't get a recording of my first playing (that would have been cool) but I got two recordings of Colin and I playing. They charge $6 to burn a CD with your 10 minute jam on it. If you bring a recorder, you don't get the beautiful mixed version, but it is a cheap way to get that beautiful sound.

Below are download links of the awesome recording.

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Music for you

Dec 27, 2012

First of all, check out AI3 because that's really important and fun. I've added two features. See if you can find them. Google has started indexing me slowly. I hope they don't spend too much time before they decide that it's not worth a high ranking. CPU time isn't free. I've been slowly promoting words and sentences that I like. You can tell that my favorite vocabulary is very biased toward things that I think about but don't get the opportunity to speak about. That will change as my power of linguistics improves.

Now for the music, 2012 December 27 [flac]. I actually made this today in a few hours. Don't expect too much from it, it's an experimental 3 instrument song, (plucked instrument, bass, and electric snare) played on keyboard with Rosegarden, ZynAddSubFX, and JACK. It shows the progress of my musical composing skill, still quite amateur. The plucked instrument (aka guitar but it wasn't really a guitar so much) is by far the best part of the song. I rerecorded the first 4 seconds because the original patch (which is quite good in the middle and end) started off with a cacophony of horrible discord. You might say that the entire thing is a cacophony of discord but I rather like it. The bass was put in when decided that the plucked instrument had too many silences that I didn't feel like removing. So I figured out how to make the bass work and then just hit 5 keys over and over again in any rhythm and melody that made sense. It doesn't sound very good at high volume, so I took it to its lowest audible volume so that it'd only pick up the silences and a bit the rest of the time. The drums were quite easy copy and paste and took almost no time to work with. I tried to do a really fast paced drumming session and it totally didn't work at all with the slow plucked instrument, so I chucked it. The end is rather abrupt because it ends on a short high note preceded by another high note instead of a long low note. I left it that way because endings are overrated and this is a quick experimental song and should sound like it. The middle contains quite a few silences which don't make sense and you get a little bit of the bass and snare and then a few more notes. Once I have more practice, I will certainly make my songs a lot cleaner. I wonder how many rests a rock song can get away with. Maybe 2 if it's long. Also note that the entire song is in the key of C. I haven't figured out keys well enough to use any other key than Major C so it sounds like I don't know anything about music. Well, I don't. I have spent maybe 6 months of free time in my entire life working on music and this is the output. Half of that was practicing keyboard at age 10 or so. Some of it was practicing drums with RockBand (1, 2, 3, and The Beatles) which I didn't use at all because this song didn't seem to call for it. I spent a few months of free time in 2003-2004 working on CSound, SoundTracker and MusE. Skills you learn in one music editor transfer fortunately. In CSound I created a ton of original samples which I didn't use in this because ZynAddSubFX has completely changed the way that I deal with instruments. If you're interested, there are other samples of my music here on this blog:

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Aug 25, 2011

Saturday Aug 27th 9PM

The past week and a half I have been having a bit of fun. I've been planning a party with music and guests. It isn't easy but it isn't exactly rocket science. Getting musicians to play requires advance notice usually and as time goes on fewer and fewer people are available. Fans as well require advance notice and getting the word out is not a trivial task. I mean, if a person wants me to go to their show they practically have to e-mail me on a day when I want to go. Alas that doesn't always work either. NWTekno was a great place to find events and sometimes still is but lacks tons of shows that simply don't post their show. In fact the show linked above simply will not be posted there.

Moreover, sound is an important element to any party. Going to Guitar Center and buying $700 of sound gear will give you decent sound but have you heard of their 15% return policy? If you play 2 shows before you return the gear, $700 * %15 / 2 = $52.5 per show. Of course Guitar Center probably doesn't want you to do that. Don't let anyone spill any beer or blow your speaker.

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Fixing your RockBand 2 Drum

Nov 2, 2010

You may be aware of my work on RockBand 2 Drum "drivers". If I had written my code as a kernel module (and it would likely be accepted into the mainline), it would be easy to call it a driver. However, I wrote it using libusb and ALSA, which makes it a userland program. I feel that I made the right design choice. ALSA libraries are low enough latency and libusb allows efficient use of interrupts, so it works quite well. Also, adding any complex code to the kernel that isn't totally necessary seems like a risky endeavor.

Anyway, that code is here: RockBand 2 Drum Instrument for Linux

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