Full upgraded page: August 2002 P-ART JOURNAL 28 VIRTUAL HANDS Music from distance The German company Doepfer (D) has released a special MIDI-interface in 1993-94 to connect the Nintendo PowerGlove to a MIDI-sound source. MIDI POWERGLOVE
Originally, you don't need a computer to make a Hand-performance, but I still search for appropriate software (Mac or Atari), because it 's extremely unpractical to touch and tip the dip switches again on the Power Glove MIDI-hand, to pull down in the subwindows and switch between algorithms.
E-mail me if you have found a computerbased solution on
P-ART (< click) or contact me at fax: + 32 / 16 56 10 60.
Original personal project>
There is no reason why a synthesizer would need a traditional keyboard to play notes or to control other MIDI-events. Using a Nintendo PowerGlove connected to a MACINTOSH computer (using music software MAX) and a synthesizer, John LAMAR (US) controls MIDI-sounds from distance. The performer moves his glove in front of a rectangular area. (< see the picture)
I don't know if this research is still going on. Email me.
Michel WAISVISZ (STEIM, NL) is the inventor of THE HANDS (now version 3).
Photo © P-ART
Enjoy an exclusive video-excerpt by meself from Waisvisz' open performance "La Distance" with his Hands (version 2) at El Dorado, Antwerp (1993). Click on Michel WAISVISZ in my P-ART WEB OF ARTISTS
I don't know if the musical SHAKE-HANDS are finally released on the music market. This alternative MIDI-controller announced in the 90s, should allow you to vary comfortably between algorithmic managed MIDI-messages (MIDI-notes etc).
The American musician Butch ROVAN's invention is a glove that translates gestures into music. "The disturbing thing about electronic music though is that the gestures aren't related to the sounds that are produced. When I play the saxophone softly, I tend to move my body downwards. The gestures while playing an acoustic instrument are encoded into sound: it's physicality. That make music so expressive. I like to make a connection between the physical gesture and the electronic sound. Because of my background as an clarinet and saxophone player, my glove is different from The Hands developed by Michel Waisvisz. Mine are different because they are sensitive on the fingertips, which gives you a lot more control. When you play an instrument, the fingertips are the point of contact between you and your instrument." (derived from the interview of Rahma Khazam, Journalist for the Electronic Future of Music. Paris December 1997
In the recent past, several music factories released their results of alternative MIDI-machines which allow to link the acoustic side to the digital music world. The CP 40 (ROLAND) is an alternative MIDI-controller that I use for monophonic input. You don't need a computer, because you control the MIDI-world from a distance and from the other side: the expressive overtones of voice and other classical instruments. The restrictions of the CP-40 are the accuracy of the pitch detection. When I experiment for instance with the narrative energy of words and vocals, the results deliver unpredictable but fascinating sound files.
In my P-ART MUSIC CABINET ( P-ART Paradise) I can illustrate this statement with the unpredictable and also fascinating dynamic of MIDI-music. Talking or singing into the mike of the CP-40, the pitch and overtones of your voice of harmonica evoke the allocated data (for instance notes, envelopes) in your MIDI-system without touching any key on the keyboard. However, it takes training and full patience to control the data on the right way. After all, pay attention to select good sounding patches.
Without reading or writing notes on paper, you enter from distance monophonic lines in your music computer via the CP-40. Ultimately, you can save on disk or you make a printout of your melodic or bas lines without notation.
Actually, there is sofisticated computer based software on the market (for instance: AUTOSCORE for Mac / PC) based on the same principle. AutoTUNE (Antares) can detect the actual pitch in the chosen scale. Autotune includes 22 microtonal scales from the worldmusic scene.
In the future, I'm looking for powerful machines to convert my polyphonic audio tapes into computerdata files, editable for use in music software.
Don't forget to look at the homepage of LOGOS DUO (http://www.logosfoundation.org). Over the years, Godfried-Willem Raes and Monique Darge (B) experimented many times with virtual musical instruments, like the movement-infrared converter.
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