A MaKey-MaKey “prepared piano” works as an excellent piano phrase looper, from Kelly Snook:
This is a modification of my grand piano so that it can be easily looped. Using one maKey maKey, one channel of microphone input (Neumann TLM 103), a laptop running one audio channel into Ableton live, and the output via laptop headphone out to a vibroy vibration speaker stuck directly onto the piano soundboard, the artist never has to touch a computer or midi controller.
The maKey maKey sees a touch anywhere along the copper touch strip (below the keyboard) as a click on the multipurpose looper button, allowing the artist to start, play, overdub, stop, and/or clear the loops without ever taking hands away from the keys. the maKey maKey circuit is completed by a bare left foot on a copper plate on the floor. up to 12 additional functions inside ableton can be can be mapped to other copper plates on top of the piano, if desired. Improvisational looping is demonstrated here by Caeli Lohr.
The way I connected it is simple. the copper strip that runs below the keys is connected via the red alligator clip to computer key via the maKey maKey. that key is then mapped to the “all purpose” button on ableton live’s looper. no special plugins. the all purpose button is customizable in live – you can choose how you want the copper strip to control loop record, start stop, etc. viberoy transduces the audio out from ableton directly to the piano soundboard.
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