• Add to Collection
  • About

    About

    This is the first prototype for a handmade music sequencer I am building. I've been using analogue and digital sequencers for many years but I ne… Read More
    This is the first prototype for a handmade music sequencer I am building. I've been using analogue and digital sequencers for many years but I never liked the idea of having to program 'feel' into the pattern by nudging steps, velocity and adding swing. I wanted a naive, purely mechanical sequencer. One prone to mistakes, timing inconsistencies and, most importantly, capable of surprises. Read Less
    Published:
This is the first prototype for a handmade music sequencer I am building. I've been using analogue and digital sequencers for many years but I never liked the idea of having to program 'feel' into the pattern by nudging steps, velocity and adding swing. I wanted a naive, purely mechanical sequencer. One prone to mistakes, timing inconsistencies and, most importantly, one capable of surprises. 

I constructed the prototype sequencer out of Tinker Toys to keep the childlike quality. Currently, the sequencer triggers a Tama Techstar drum synthesiser module. The latest version is mains powered giving me a bit more consistency in terms of playback speed. I will be adding a geared drive train and a potentiometer to have better control over tempo.

  
Prototype 1, warts and all. 
I used basic contact microphones mounted on springs to act as the CV triggers. This technique is prone to mis-hits, which is what I was hoping for.
A small 6V electric motor runs the entire contraption. The next version will include a geared drive system.
Close-up of some of the controllable parameters on the Tama Techstar 305 drum synth.