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Re: Looping Setup

>I'm not familiar (yet) with MIDI controllable eeffects, but I assume
>that each controllable parameter is a different "channel" or
>something, so that if you had enough controllers to mangle, you could
>hack them all at oncee.
>Is this right?

That's the idea. On each midi channel (16 of them), you have 127 continous
controllers, each of which can adjust a value between 0 and 127. Usually a
patch on a processor or synth can have any parameter assigned to a
continuous controller, so you can adjust it in real time.

>If so, this Peavey MIDI fader box I have over heree, which I bought
>for controlling Deck, would be way cool.  16 faders with buttons,
>"shuttle" dial, and a few other buttons, all of which I believe are
>Gee, I need to get one of these TSR-24s thingees and try it out.

Most decent effects devices implement this feature to various degrees. If
you want to try it, look at a variety of boxes.

The peavey midi faders are probably pretty good. JL cooper also makes them.
I imagine others do as well.

Now for the adventurous, I encourage you to explore beyond the cheesy
faders and footpedals. Check out the Buchla Thunder and Buchla Lightning.
These instruments are designed and built by the enigmatic Don Buchla, who
is considered to be the co-father of synthesizers as musical instruments,
along with Bob Moog. Don is brilliant, and quite possibly one of the most
visionary people to ever enter the craft of musical instrument design.
Naturally the industry ignores him and no one buys any of his stuff.
Doesn't help that he's more than a little unusual and difficult to work
with, but share a bottle of wine (or 3 or 4, probably) with him and you
won't regret it. Anyway, unlike Moog, who builds theremins somewhere in New
York, Don is still creating the future. Distant future probably!

Thunder is basically a control surface, with various areas that respond to
the position, velocity, and pressure of the musician's fingers by sending
out appropriate midi data. I've seen people using it for electronic and
ambient music, and it was quite cool.

I think this would be great for looping, since you can often stop playing
your instrument once the loops are going and concentrate on effects and
such. Having ten square feet of footpedals is somewhat less than
convenient! But with a thunder, you could turn to this unusual looking
device on a stand next to you, and start manipulating the sounds with deft
motions of your fingers, playing the effects! Looks cool, and much more
musically intuitive.

Lightning is a pair of wands that transmit midi data based on their
position and velocity in a space. The communicate with the main unit
through infrared beams and sensors. Its sort of like playing percussion,
but with invisible drums. You can program the space anyway you like, so you
mighe have vibraphone in front of you, violin synth pads to your right,
effects controllers up in the front, loop triggers to the left....

Don also makes intruments called Rain and Wind, which I don't really know
much about since they are newer. I've heard they are quite amazing though.
If you are interested Don has a web page at http://www.buchla.com/

I talked with David Torn about similar ideas once, about the need for loop
devices to have interesting interfaces that are musically useful and are
also interesting to watch for the audience. People get confused if they
don't see you making motions that correspond to the sounds they hear, which
is a problem for loopers. Various midi controllers out there can probably
serve this purpose in interesting ways. I challenge you all to look into


Kim Flint                   | Looper's Delight
kflint@annihilist.com       | http://www.annihilist.com/loop/loop.html
http://www.annihilist.com/  | Loopers-Delight-request@annihilist.com