Monday, June 14, 2010

The Percussive Commodore

I'm currently working on a percussion piece which involves hooking up digital drum pads to trigger an old 1982 Commodore 64 computer, so that the percussionist can play the old computer as a percussion instrument. The C64 had a very advanced synthesizer chip for it's time, of course it's extremely limited by today's standard but the chip is still very sought after by electronic musicians today, because it frankly doesn't sound like anything else.

Here is a quick confused (low quality) sample of me trying out the C64 by playing the percussion pads. This is the sound of a computer almost as old as me.

Kudos goes to Fredrik Olofsson who helped me with (actually did all the work) soldering a decent Audio/Video adapter for this old little beast. Further kudos goes to the 8bit Ventures team, who with their MSSIAH cartridge provides extremely straightforward MIDI compatibility and great synthesizer software for the C64/SID.


  1. And back are the cables, machines and joysticks. Old times revive!

  2. Yep, and back is hum, noise, crackle and all things electric. The TV I'm using is flickering like crazy and is about to break down any minute, it almost makes as much noise as the actual synthesizer chip.