Music for Cardiac Clinics

2 years ago

Irregular heart rhythms self-arrange into a musical composition based on the position of the user. Each beat is amplified, delayed and pitch shifted.

SUMMARY

Below is a video of a live performance at Stanford's Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics. I demonstrated the instrument in CCRMA's Listening Room – a 3D studio with 24-channel surround sound.

Live performance in The Knoll @ Stanford

THE INSTRUMENT

I have a nervous system dysfunction that causes my heart to beat irregularly and very rapidly (up to 300 BPM). I am able to control it based on my position (laying down, sitting or standing). I thought this would create an interesting musical instrument and a novel interface for controlling it.

TECHNOLOGY

Rather than using digital biometric data, I used a stethoscope as an analog microphone and amplified the signal. Another microphone recorded my breathing. This was fed into a Max patch that added pitch shifting and delays to modify the audio and create a richer composition.

The software filters and processes live signals
Hunter Futo

Published 2 years ago