(compMus2) Creative Project 1 — UPDATED


I realized that I hadn’t posted this – this is the same as the handout, except for the extended deadline. -K

MUMET 241: First Creative Project (Due 9/24, by the beginning of class), Modulation Synthesis

Compose a 2-minute excerpt of computer music using analog synthesis techniques available in Tassman, focusing on modulation synthesis techniques (FM primarily) in the audio and low-frequency domains. A successful project will show creative and dynamic instrument/sound design in combination with interesting musical gestures. Your project can have a repetitive rhythmic component, but this component should be well developed and sufficiently complex.

Use DP as a host for Tassman. You should record your material first as MIDI information, make appropriate edits, and then record the audio output to audio tracks. You can then mix your audio tracks much as you would any multitrack project. Your DP session must make use of a conductor track to set tempo. (Edits to meter are optional.) The use of DP to automate your mix parameters (Pan, Level, plugin settings) is preferable.

For pieces of this length, form doesn’t really need to be much of a concern. Almost anything that works moment to moment will work for two minutes. Take advantage of the multitrack capabilities of DP to create layers of activity. Slow moving background material can help to define a section as much as fast moving foreground gestures.

The excerpt can be thought of as either a section of a work to be included in your final project, a sketch/study of an entire work, just an experiment, or some combination. Remember to title your work, even if you call it Untitled.


  1. Length. The project must be at least 1’15” (UPDATED). Do not go much longer than 2 minutes. Bloat will not help your final grade.
  2. You will need to use at least three different presets. These should be used as individual Tassman performances. Slight envelope changes do not count as a new preset.
  3. MIDI Continuous Control (MIDI Links) of your Tassman instruments. Document this for each Performance. (word doc or txt file)
  4. Complete data files for your Tassman instruments, and all DP files used must be included in your data folder that you turn in electronically. I should be able to load and perform your instruments.

You will be graded on the following:

  1. Creativity in instrument design.
  2. Creative use of musical gestures.
  3. Required number of preset/performances.
  4. Meeting the required length.
  5. Including the required documentation and files in your data folder.
  6. Overall sound quality, which includes:
    • – proper amplitude levels (no clipping, maximize peak signal to noise ratio)
    • – quality of any audio edits (no pops or clicks)
    • – no distortion due to overloading of plugins or mix channels.
  7. Following turn-in procedure.

Turn-in Procedure:

  • Name your DP project folder with your name and the number “1” – “project” will be added to the name. (kkothman2 project)
  • Your project folder should also contain any Tassman files that you created, and your documentation regarding MIDI Links for each performance. Using sub-folders for these files is highly recommended.
  • Turn in your project folder via my directory on the musictechxserve. Login with your username and password, then choose to connect to my directory (kkothman on MT1). Open my Public folder, and copy your project folder to my Drop Box. You will be warned that you do not have permission to view the result of your operation; proceed, and your folder will be copied to my Drop Box.
  • Use Toast, Peak, iTunes, or some other audio CD authoring software to burn an AUDIO CD with your finished project as the only track.
  • Label the CD with your name, title of piece, and duration (min:sec). You can use a Sharpie and write neatly on the disc. Please do NOT use paper adhesive labels.

Turn in the Audio CD in a rectangular CD case. No case cover is necessary.


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