Music Hack Day London Registration This Week; Your Music Wanted

Music Hack Day from Your Neighbours on Vimeo. Music Hack Day rolls into London September 4-5 with a huge lineup, ranging from Domino Records to Queen Mary, University of London, and I expect some real work on music creation hacking, not just the Web. If you want to register, time is short – registration closes this coming Friday August 6 (or, erm, 6 August). Dave Haynes also reminds us that the Music Hack Day is looking for musical contributions to give the above promo video a soundtrack. If you’re looking for a chance to promote your sound skills, upload a …

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Listen: Personal Sounds of Circuits, from Micronaut, Phil Archer, Caribou

Summertime is bringing a host of great new music to my inbox and mailbox. Here are just a few selections for this Tuesday morning. What binds them all together is a desire for truly personal expression and satisfaction, which often manifests itself as an individualized sound. Chris Randall is best known as the voice behind cult favorite plug-in developer Audio Damage, and the opinionated, sometimes loud-mouthed pundit of his blog Analog Industries. But he’s a musician first. As better-known figures debate the merits of copyright and Creative Commons without ever having recorded a note, Chris has quietly released a lot …

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Free Weekend: Creative Commons Workout, Moby, Samples, Inspiration, More

Yeah, for a lot of the northern hemisphere, one of these kinds of weekends. Photo (CC-BY) Frenchman Julien Haler. (Oh yeah, we really don’t say it enough – thanks, France! In fact, jeez, double thanks!) Summer days and evenings for a lot of us are a perfect time for buying new records, listening to new mixes, exploring new sounds and samples and production techniques. And yes, while pundits worry about the failing value of music, I personally manage to stock up on free downloads and wind up overspending my budget on records, too. It’s good to be an enthusiast. Here’s …

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ASCAP Attacks Creative Commons, Advocacy Groups as Anti-Copyright, Anti-Artist

Vintage image (CC-BY-SA) Ioan Sameli, as licensed by us pinko commies at CDM. An ASCAP legislative fundraising letter revealed last week that the American performing rights organization is invoking fears of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Public Knowledge, and Creative Commons in order to raise money. ASCAP appears to be repeating, now in the more heated language of fundraising, arguments it has had with the Creative Commons license in the past. For its part, Creative Commons insists most of its licenses don’t preclude performing rights bodies like ASCAP from collecting funds. In the letter, sent on behalf of ASCAP’s Political Action …

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Velosynth: Bicycle-Mounted Synth is Open Source, Hackable, Potentially Useful

velosynth release#001 from velosynth on Vimeo. Bicycle transport is cheap, environmentally sound, and quiet – a little too quiet. Since bikes don’t make noise, it can be difficult to hear them coming. And since a bicyclist should be focused on the road, any visual feedback to the bicyclist is potentially distracting. What’s the solution? How about a box that easily straps to a bike and makes sounds? Sounds can provide feedback to pedestrians, fellow cyclists, and other people sharing the road. They can also make distraction-free sonification of data the cyclist might want, as opposed to requiring that a rider …

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Listening: Paul Croker’s Sampled Vinyl MPC Collage, PublicSpacesLab

Photo (CC-BY) Hryck. / Todd. Barcelona-based, Los Angeles-edited PublicSpacesLab is an example of what a netlabel can be. Instead of just another dumping ground for sounds, it feels like a well-curated cafe, pairing regular but thoughtful releases with reflections on music making. Everything is Creative Commons-licensed, free music, from a variety of artists spanning geographies and genres. If you’re in the mood for reading, recent thought pieces from the editor cover a range of topics: Expansion, the lesser known dynamics tool (Amen, brother) The demise of an indie radio station in LA (with some harsh words for the town – …

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Tell Us Your Musical Technological Dreams, Get A Chance to See Them Realized

Ready for some blue-sky, 35,000-foot-altitude thinking? Photo (CC-BY-ND Andres Rueda. Want a flying car? Dream of the flying car. Build the flying car. A competition I’m hosting with Digitópia, the musical-technological community of Porto, Portugal, extends to readers worldwide a challenge to dream up the digital musical instrument/interface/creation you want. Got something practical you wish could be built? Got something impractical and bizarre? Either way, articulate it in the best way you can — images, words, videos, mock-ups, stop motion animation, beat poetry, whatever you think is best — and send it in. We’ll share the most interesting entries, and …

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DIY Community: Digitópia Seeks World’s Best Patchers, and More Open Source Competition

What if a competition didn’t just encourage entrants to try to make a better product? What if it encouraged friendly rivalry between makers to produce entries that were also shared across the community? That’s the idea behind Digitópia’s upcoming series of competitions, now entering its third year. Digitópia itself is based in Porto, Portugal, at the Casa da Musica. But even if Portugal isn’t exactly in your neighborhood, entrants and onlookers alike can benefit from shared, open sourced contributions. In fact, even the prizes itself are open projects. The simple, anthropomorphic-looking controller above is a free project. It’s dead-simple, a …

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HAITI 2010 Monome Community Compilation + Other Efforts to Help in Haiti

Album artwork by Pau Cabruja (www.pauk.org) . Artists and creators around the world have been moved by the suffering of Haitians in the wake of last week’s earthquake. There are ways we can help, like giving to relief organizations to give them the capacity to respond wherever needed. The next crisis could be halfway across the world or in our own neighborhood. The monome community is about more than just the button-grid, open-source controller with which they work. They’re an example of the kind of collective spirit that musicians, digital or otherwise, can share internationally (see the map of these …

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