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Amazing YouTube Music Video Series #9 -The Talking And Speaking Piano

| November 21, 2009 | 3 Replies

Amazing YouTube Music Video Series #9: The Talking And Speaking Piano

Original YouTube Title:
Speaking Piano -Now with (somewhat decent) captions!

Original Date Posted on YouTube:
February 5, 2009

Original Poster’s Comments:
A “speaking piano” reciting the Proclamation of the European Environmental Criminal Court at World Venice Forum 2009. Unfortunately it’s all in German, but what the piano says is all English, and it’s really neat to watch.

Number of YouTube Views of this Video at the Time of its Posting on MusTech.Net:
455,418

YouTube Snapshot of Video:

                (Image Only, Scroll Down To Access The YouTube Video)

MusTech.Net Comment:

This is totally cool and somewhat science fiction “creepy”.   The basic principle of this process is to analyze a complex voice wave and divide it into snapshots of the sound spectrum.  Then you take the snapshots(or data) and play them back on the piano as closely as they match the piano key frequencies as possible in real-time succession. 

Here is the direct translation of the page:

Pretty amazing, how all of a sudden the words of the Declaration become understandable to a European Environmental Criminal Court. Wien Modern was one out of ten cultural institutions asked for an artistic contribution to the event in Palazzo Ducale in Venice. The ambitious goal was to make this message audible with musical means, without falling back to a simple setting.

Berno Polzer: I think, its partially understandable, partially not. And it plays well with the limits of our construction abilities. That is, we hear sounds that obviously arent normal Music, but neither they are language, and one could say that sometimes, a bridging happens. Personally, I think you can understand individual words even without knowing the text, and the Eureka moment happens when you see the text, and suddenly, the language is there.

Yet another bridge: Miro Markus, an elementary school student from Berlin, narrated the text for the performance: Youth as a hope for the older generation.

The Austrian composer Peter Ablinger transferred the frequency spectrom of the childs voice to his computer controlled mechanical piano.

Peter Ablinger: I break down this phonography, meaning a recording of something the voice, in this case -, in individual pixels, one can say. And if I have the possibility of a rendering in a fairly high resolution (and that I only get with a mechanical piano), then I in fact restore some kind of continuity. Therefore, with a little practice, or help or subtitling, we actually can hear a human voice in a piano sound.

Misc. Information:

A great discussion on how this is done can be found here by createddigitalmusic.com:

http://createdigitalmusic.com/2009/10/06/the-speaking-piano-and-transforming-audio-to-midi/

YouTube Video Embed:

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Disclaimer:

YouTube has specific guidelines and strict guidelines about content that appears on YouTube:

Each person that uploads a video through the YouTube service has to agree to the Terms of Service (TOS) that states that for each video uploaded “…[they] affirm, represent, and/or warrant that: [they] own or have the necessary licenses, rights, consents, and permissions to use and authorize YouTube to use all patent, trademark, trade secret, copyright or other proprietary rights…”. In addition to this, each individual also must ”…further agree that [they] will not submit material that is copyrighted, protected by trade secret or otherwise subject to third party proprietary rights, including privacy and publicity rights, unless [they] are the owner of such rights or have permission from their rightful owner to post the material and to grant YouTube all of the license rights granted herein.” YouTube has a number of very good guidelines posted on their site that outline a basic criteria for determining what is appropriate and legal to upload to their Web site. [MusTech.Net, 2009]

MusTech.Net makes no claims with regard to distribution or re-distribution of this video nor seeks to engage in any form of digital copyright infringement with regard to embedding this video, which in actuality, resides solely on the YouTube servers. Any claims of potential copyright infringement with regard to this video should be addressed to YouTube first as their removal of this YouTube video will immediately cause this video embed to cease functioning. That being stated, if the original and legal copyright holders of any YouTube video appearing on MusTech.Net (via a YouTube embed) request a YouTube video to be taken down -we will comply withing a reasonable and timely matter.

MusTech.Net further does not seek to publicly question the ethics of the current copyright policy in the United States or any other country with regard in this online venue. MusTech.Net has taken a firm stance to uphold the legal rights of musicians and their music by advocating the legal purchase of their media. The YouTube Video Series on MusTech.Net is an attempt to expose the Internet masses to the amazing talents of musicians that have chosen (or their copyright holders) to have their works displayed on YouTube and, hopefully, inspire other musicians to greater heights. It is our hope that anyone who like these video snippets will seek-out and support these musicians by legally purchasing their media.

Want to read more about our thoughts and reasons on the the legality of embedding a YouTube Video in a Website? Click Here

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Category: Featured, Music Education, Music Technology, Videos and Media

About the Author ()

Joseph M. Pisano, Ph.D. is the creator of many education websites, lecturer, clinician, trumpeter, and conductor. He is currently the Associate Chair of Music and Fine Arts at Grove City College, PA and the Vice President of TI:ME. He also writes for DCI Magazine, In-Tune Monthly and has contributed hundreds of articles to various publications. Find out more at his website jpisano.com.
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