Turning Boodler into a Performance Instrument

Andrew Plotkin’s Boodler provides a sample player programmable in Python. I’ve played with it before on Linux but today I decided to try it on OS X.

It turns out that OS X audio support is even better than I’d hoped. Right now, I’ve got several copies of Boodler running, providing a rather bizarre ambient environment of pitch-shifted drumbeats and dripping water. The operative note here is several copies: you can set up several asynchronous event streams at once just by firing up multiple copies of Boodler:

  python boodler.py blop.EchoWorld &
  python boodler.py cavepool.Still &

I’m planning on writing a tapeLoop class that will allow me to play an AIFF file of my choosing at any interval I like. Since I can run several Boodlers, and I can start and stop them at will (kill is your friend here), I can build nice slowly-mutating pieces out of tiny little building blocks.

This is really the kind of thing I’ve been looking for. I don’t get along well with the really left-brained stuff like csound; I like to be able to just get in there and interact with the process.

With WireTap to record the sound stream, I can even get recording of my improvisations at full fidelity. I like this a lot.

More as it develops. (Never thought I’d have a reason to learn Python. Maybe I’ll port the library to Perl?)

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