Monday, December 1, 2014

ECS: Hybrid Instruments/Game of Tones- Inspired by the work of Ken Butler

It's been a long time without an update. I've been teaching kids at the Environmental Charter School lot of fun things! One of the things we created were "Hybrid Instruments" inspired by Ken Butler. I met Ken when I was in high school and have been inspired by his work since I started creating weird musical instruments. In the class students used guitar/bass necks, and one violin to create one string musical instruments with body made out of recycled instruments. We then added D.C. motors to the instruments to strike their string. We then took the instruments and connected them to a keyboard to control the motors.


Demo Instrument I created for the class:
For the final 2 weeks of the class students designed and fabricated a structure out of the instruments they called "Game of Tones," The structure took the form of a throne and the instruments were connected to an organ bench. Students then added LED lights to each instrument so when their motor was activated a light would correspond with each instrument. Students also created two percussive elements to the structure that played cymbals in two different ways. We then connected all the motors and LEDs to a Guitar Hero guitar to control everything.


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