2020-12-15 (Tu) Electronic Wind Chimes EWC_OST

I wrote Gravy Shock's story as a radio play, but I wanted to speak over a soundtrack. Sourcing enough open-source music could be troublesome, composing my own is out of the question, and paying for a composition is way out of my ($0.00) budget. I have wanted to make a new Electronic Windchime project for a while, and it may be possible to use pseudo-random notes to create a soundtrack that fluidly changes according to the script's mood.

In the EWC_Presenter model, I used a slider to change from whimsical opening instruments, through tumultuous action arrangements, up to white-knuckle compositions. The purpose was to help a player feel as though they are nearing a dangerous conclusion but to do so gradually, so they allow the soundtrack to infiltrate their thoughts. I want to have tighter control over this model, so I devised a layout that will enable me to switch between "moods" via a pair of sliders and change out moods on-the-fly.

For example, I could have a piccolo playing high octaves in a scattered fashion with piano notes one octave lower, which should sound playful. The next mood might have some brass instruments, and the piano could be playing on an even lower octave to be comparatively dramatic. The third set could use some percussive instruments with brass for a tense sound. After the third set plays out for a bit, I might switch back to the first. In the story, this may look like two children enjoying their teacher's lesson and asking questions when someone enters the room with a stern look on their face. The stranger asks to see the teacher privately but is there to deliver good news.

I have no idea if this impromptu approach to soundtracks will yield results or only serve as another lesson about how difficult music is.

Enough background.


I sketched my idea for a layout with the relevant hardware. The focus will be a large video screen that will display four different "moods." Moods will be a collection of instruments, accompanying settings, playback likelihood, and tempo. A pair of sliders will determine how the sounds meld.

Each "mood" will be selectable by a couple of buttons. I was planning on arcade buttons since I have many, but I decided on keyswitches since I can use silent versions if I want to operate the device while recording my voice. I added a knob to manually adjust tempo and buttons to set the upper and lower tempo limits. With my 3D resin printer, I would like to create custom keycaps, rotary knobs, and slider caps.

With my ambitious goals in this project, I can drop a few and still have robust hardware at the end. Short sub-projects like custom keycaps, knobs, and sliders caps are wholly unnecessary, but they should provide a few easy-wins in the middle of the project as it encounters trouble areas.

Draft one with large arcade buttons
Draft two with keyswitches
Draft three with side panels

The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.

First time here?

Completed projects from year 1
Completed projects from year 2
Completed projects from year 3
Completed projects from year 4
Completed projects from year 5
Completed projects from year 6

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