SlipStick

SlipStick featured in a New York Times article on new musical controllers

The score (it was just for me so it’s not very pretty)

We tend to use the word “friction” in a pejorative sense as in, “Your independent thinking is causing a lot of friction in the group.”

But without friction, there would be no love, there would be no forward progress, there would be no vocal utterances, and there would be no music!

All sounds for the piece are generated in Kyma by a stick-slip algorithm modelling a mass at the end of a spring being dragged across a surface that has friction. You can hear it sticking in place for a while as the spring tension builds up and then suddenly slipping (and sometimes oscillating back and forth) when the tension overcomes the friction. Part of the experiment was to create an instrument that would not make any sound without movement. No sound is generated unless you are moving your fingers across the Continuum surface (sometimes heating up your fingertips). -CS