New Year, New Handmade Music: Call for NYC, Austin/SxSW, the World

Pete Edwards of casperelectronics making some noise at Manhattan’s Culturefix in October. Handmade Music is our party for people who make things that make music. If you create your own musical tools – whether acoustic instruments and soundmakers, hacks, circuit bends, custom Pd and Max patches, electronics, or code – we want to hear from you. We’re looking for contributors in NYC, Texas, and around the world: Live acts and projects in New York Street team volunteers in NYC and to help organize and promote events in other parts of the planet Live acts and projects for a special South …


Last Days of Compact Disco: Album Lovers Hand-Make Musical Objects

While Mac blog TUAW calls on Apple to kill optical drives (does Apple need that kind of encouragement?), the shiny digital compact disc and the album in general still have their devotees. Sure, album sales are down. Sure, digital downloads are in. But look beyond business or practicality for a moment at these exotic hand-constructed musical objects, and what you see is sheer love. A hand-constructed CD or vinyl album is a gesture of making music for someone, not for the ether. I raised the issue early last month, and readers responded with lots of examples of handmade records, which …


Music + Crafts Meet: Spins and Needles!

The crafting and DIY worlds are oddly divided, as are, too often, music making and hand-making other stuff. And with these divides comes a rather pronounced gender divide, as well. At the Maker Faire, the gender balance — while not fully split — was more than a little noticeable in the Craft and Make areas of the floor. I think there’s hope, partly because I personally enjoy making stuff and partly because I’m evangelical about music and DIY electronics and software and believe we can build a diverse army of people involved in them. And whatever the medium (felt, steelworking, …