A Modular Synth and a Magic(?) Table

in Music4 months ago

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Ok this one needs some explanation!

Last night on my Brixton Radio show I tried a different setup to usual in my kitchen.

No there was no cooking involved - but there was a toy piano and a magic(?) table alongside my modular.

If you watch the video you'll notice that I'm playing the table by 'strumming' my fingers on it which causes various sounds to trigger depending how I strike it.

In this particular clip I was holding a patch cable thinking about adding to the modular patch and then I decided to see how it would sound if I dropped it on the table. As you see I quite liked the result and played around with that a while!

Ok so what's going on here??

Ok so it's not magic (shocker).

In this setup there is a contact microphone stuck to the case of the toy piano, and the piano sits on a solid table. The contact microphone is plugged into a mic preamp module in the modular and then routed to various modules both to pick up sound directly and also to trigger other sounds and modulations.

A contact microphone works by being stuck to a solid object (or instrument) and then picks up vibrations in that object as opposed to vibrations in the air which is how a regular microphone works.

In this case I made it so sensitive that I could create a whole soundscape by just drumming my fingers on the table or even (as you see in this clip) trigger sounds by dropping a cable on it.

I did actually play the piano during the set too but the cable dropping was the most fun for me (and completely unplanned - the best bits often are!)

I've got many more experimental ideas for using the modular alongside other instruments and objects and can't wait to share more!

If you are interested in watching live and joining the chat I'm live every Monday at 9pm UK time. It's on Brixton Radio but also streamed to my Twitch channel and there are usually a whole bunch of people from Hive in the Twitch chat - especially from @risingstargame. @stickupboys are normally there two giving out Rising Star giveaways.

Till next time - have a great week Hive and I hope you enjoy your music making and music listening!


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Sometimes the music you make accidentally is the best sort. It's what drives inspiration.

Rock on!

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Cheers Steve - Rock on indeed - or in my case: BEEP on!

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Awesome set👍

Thanks you and thanks for watching!

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Love it mate!

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Everyone needs a magic table!

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Loving this!!!

Thanks! I think everyone needs a magical musical table!

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