Envelop Wants to Make an Ambisonic 3D Venue and Tools

3D, spatialized sound is some part of the future of listening – both privately and in public performances. But the question is, how? Right now, there are various competing formats, most of them proprietary in some way. There are cinema formats (hello, Dolby), meant mainly for theaters. There are research installations, such as those in Germany (TU Berlin, Frauenhofer) and Switzerland (ZHDK), to name a few. And then there are specific environments like the 4DSOUND installation I performed on and on which CDM hosted an intensive weekend hacklab – beautiful, but only in one place in the world, and served …


Melodies in Triangles: Christopher Willits on Playing Grids of Push [Tutorial Video]

You can think about melodies and harmonies in geometric shapes. In fact, instrumentalists playing piano keys or guitar frets have already been doing that for some time. What’s happening with grid controllers like Push – among other alternatives – is that it’s now easy to rearrange melodic setups to see and play these relationships in new ways. Musician Christopher Willits has started a series of videos called CREATE (hmmm… like that name somehow), through the creative community platform Overlap. Willits tells CDM, “I really love this instrument. I’m excited to work with it more and become really comfortable. Like any …


Willits + Sakamoto Team Up Again; Hear the First Track [Stream]

Cover image by Michael Cina. Courtesy Ghostly. Let me drop journalistic distance for a moment here: the last Willits + Sakamoto outing, teaming up Californian Christopher Willits and Japanese composer/musician Ryuichi Sakamoto, is one of my favorite albums. So I’m thrilled to hear these two are doing another release. Willits’ dreamy, evocative reveries meld perfectly with Sakamoto’s crisp, reflective musical imagination for me. Let’s have a listen, shall we? Curious to know your comments.


From a Wide Palette of Sound, Christopher Willits’ Remix Project, Sample by Sample

Christopher Willits playing live at San Francisco’s Public Works in October of this year. Photo courtesy the artist. Sound and light artist, guitarist, Max patcher, and all-around sonically-fascinating guy Christopher Willits has opened up his “Tiger Flower Circle Sun” record on Ghostly to remixing. Halfway through the project, we talk to Chris about what’s going on – and what the results so far sound like. And we share, from earlier this fall, a composition in which you can recharge. The project begins not with stems, but with samples, the raw materials on which the album was based. Christopher walks CDM …


dubSpot Kicks of Live 8+APC Workshop Tour in San Francisco – CDM Discount

Guitarist/composer/musician Christopher Willits is on faculty for the dubSpot series. Photo (CC) Buzz Andersen. dubSpot, the West Coast + East Coast music technology training center is doing an eight-city tour of the US to talk about Ableton Live 8 and the Akai APC40 controller. They’re enlisting some of my favorite people to do the workshops. I like the curriculum: it’s not just “here’s how to use Live,” but a real focus on music production, finishing actual music, and pushing the envelope with live visuals, onstage performance and controllers. We also have a $25 discount exclusively for CDM readers if you …


Christopher Willits on XLR8R with Live Jitter, Ableton Live Visual Setup

Musician Christopher Willits has an ongoing series for XLR8R Magazine in which he talks his own technical workflow. In the latest episode, he adds live visuals to his Ableton Live set using Max/MSP/Jitter. What’s nice about this is you see how some clever mapping can make visuals integrate neatly with music. I’m somewhat insane, so my own setup often involves simultaneously running visuals separately with no communication with my music software. That allows me to set up less-direct relationships between visuals and sound. But, while the techniques could be combined to a variety of setups, this also serves as a …