Earlier this month, we had the pleasure of attending Music Hack Day at the Chordify office in Groningen, Netherlands. The hack day coincided with the epic Eurosonic Noorderslag music festival, featuring performances by nearly 200 independent artists over four days.
Though the number of hackers was small, and none of the teams wound up using the Rdio API, the quality of the hacks was great. Here's a rundown of what got built:
In C(offeeScript) - Site
UThe folks over at Shuffler.fm put together this really cool hack. Using Firebase, the Web Audio API, and CoffeeScript, they implemented a browser-based performance site that allows visitors to collaborate on performing Terry Riley's "In C". Visitors can individually select which look to play, and can hear either the whole performance, or just their part through their speakers. Having multiple people visit the site on different computers in the same room gives off a Laptop Orchestra vibe, and sounds really nice. Winner, Rdio prize for Most Creative Hack
Mobile Arrange is a proof of concept iPad app that presents the user with a grid of notes to tap. Using a sample dataset from Chordify, the hack maps relevant notes to the grid based on the chords from a song, allowing you to play along, rearrange, or alter the chord voicings.
Flappy Music - Site
No modern hackathon would be complete without a Flappy Bird knock off. This variation accepts a SoundCloud link, and uses the audio waveform to generate a Flappy Bird level, which you play in real-time with the song. Good luck making it to the end of the song!
Billed as "a multi-purpose toolkit for the post-post-modern (self-employed) DJ", this Max/MSP hack combines a bunch of interesting technologies, including a Myo armband, and LED wristbands from Dutchband. The hack supports a preparation mode, allowing you to use gestures to listen to songs and add them to a playlist while you're doing other things (like making a sandwich), and a performance mode, that processes the sensed motion and audio to manipulate music and control a sea of LED wristbands.
tabbit - Source
Using the same Chordify sample dataset as Mobile Arrange, the tabbit team decided to build a Guitar-Hero-in-the-browser game. Because of limitations in the dataset, the game only provided the chords' root notes, and didn't quite support audio processing, but it was a solid effort, and a cool concept.
Lost in Translation - Site
Built by the evangelists of one of our competitors, Lost in Translation is a "find local artists" hack. Using your location (or the name of a location that you provide), the hack searches the Echonest for geo-relevant artists, and puts together a playlist of tunes for you to listen to.
This list of hacks is also up on Hacker League, with info provided by the hackers themselves.