The ideas put forward in Ferrucio Busoni’s ‘Sketch of a New Aesthetic of Music’ (1907) inspired a generation of composers to explore micro-tonal and varied intonation and Hermann von Helmholtz’s ‘On the Sensations of Tone’ (1863) provided an understanding of the physics of sound suggesting the possibility of creating an unlimited palette of tones and shapes beyond the restriction of traditional instrumentation. This lead directly to the design of several new instrument; Thadeus Cahill’s Telharmonium (1897) and Jörg Mager’s Sphäraphon (1920s) amongst many other, that explored new forms of interaction freeing the composer and musician from the ‘tyranny’ of the fixed tempered Piano keyboard (which at the beginning of electronic music instrument design was a fairly recent standard). Though this experiment was ultimately doomed due to commercial pressure on instrument designers to provide simulations of existing instruments on a fixed tempered scale for popular music, the concept survived into the 1960s in ‘serious’ experimental music with the era of the Electronic Music Studio; GRM, Milan, WDR, Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center etc. and even Moog (in the original instruments) and Buchla’smodular synthesisers. More recently interest in atonality and non-manual control has re-surfaced with software synthesis and audio computer languages.
“Monkey Machine is a free online drum machine for creating drum loops and providing rhythmic accompaniment for musicians. Monkey Machine features are:
Over 20 high quality drum kits provided by Natural Studio and Hydrogen.
Extremely accurate timing.
Online drum beat database with over 10 000 downloadable drum beats.
Export drum beats as MIDI files.
Variable time signatures.”
“Breakage is an intelligent drum machine designed to make it easy and fun to play complex, live breakbeat performances. A step-sequencer pattern editor and previewer, database, sample browser, neural network, pattern morphs, statistics and probabilistic pattern generator give you the tools to work with breaks on a higher level than ever before.”
Breakage: the intelligent drum machine for intelligent breaks
Breakage is an intelligent drum machine designed to make it easy and fun to play complex, live breakbeat performances. A step-sequencer pattern editor and previewer, database, sample browser, neural network, pattern morphs, statistics and probabilistic pattern generator give you the tools to work with breaks on a higher level than ever before.
From Wiki:In 1930, the avant-garde American composer and musical theorist Henry Cowell commissioned Russian inventor Léon Theremin to create the remarkably innovative Rhythmicon. Cowell wanted an instrument with which to play compositions involving multiple rhythmic patterns impossible for one person to perform simultaneously on acoustic keyboard or percussion instruments. The invention, completed by Theremin in 1931, can produce up to sixteen different rhythms—a periodic base rhythm on a selected fundamental pitch and fifteen progressively more rapid rhythms, each associated with one of the ascending notes of the fundamental pitch’s overtone series. Like the overtone series itself, the rhythms follow an arithmetic progression, so that for every single beat of the fundamental, the first overtone (if played) beats twice, the second overtone beats three times, and so forth. Using the device’s keyboard, each of the sixteen rhythms can be produced individually or in any combination. A seventeenth key permits optional syncopation. The instrument produces its percussion-like sound using a system, proposed by Cowell, that involves light being passed through radially indexed holes in a series of spinning ‘cogwheel’ discs before arriving at electric photoreceptors.
To Listen To The Actual Sounds Of The Rhythmicon As Mentioned Below
In the course of research for an article published in Organized Sound, Margaret Schedel recorded the rhythmicon housed in the Smithsonian. The sound is surprisingly percussive, almost drum-like. The pitch is unclear in the recording she sent me and she, too, remarked on this fact. The samples have been used in John P. Young’s work, “Ars Algorhythmica,” a piece for didgeridoo and electronics performed at the SEAMUS 2005 conference in Muncie, Indiana.
At last, a solution to electronic drumming for people without a degree in percussion! Two all different book and software packages are available: 200 Instant Drum Patterns and 260 Instant Drum Patterns – for a total of 460 different patterns! They both include a variety of musical styles and fill patterns. About one-third of the patterns are fills.
All patterns on disk
Patterns shown in both music and grid notation
Includes fill patterns
Works with any sequencer (Standard MIDI File format)
Works with any keyboard, module or drum machine with percussion sounds