First Annual MIDI Innovation Awards Honors The Top 10 Entries

Entire awards ceremony is now posted on YouTube

London, England – On January 21, the MIDI Association, Music Hackspace, and NAMM held the first MIDI Innovation Awards online. The event showcased the Top 10 entries, as innovators from nine countries competed for a share of $20,000 worth of prizes in a fast-paced, livestreamed show, which also featured live and recorded performances. The show’s climax was announcing the three Grand Prize winners as decided by an expert panel of judges, as well as the winner of the popular vote. 

Craig Anderton, President of The MIDI Association said “The number of entries, the high standards they represented, and the sheer number of votes exceeded even our most optimistic expectations. Innovation in MIDI is thriving.” MusicHackspace.com founder Jean-Baptiste Thiebaut, who initially proposed the awards, stated “The awards realized our shared dream: give makers and innovators around the world an opportunity to connect with the NAMM community despite the pandemic, spotlight their work to the public, and celebrate the spirit of creativity.”

The judges awarded 1st place to Krishna Chetan from India for his entry Fluid  Pitch, which also won the popular vote. Noted technologist and judge Dr. Kate Stone stated “This novel plug-in re-imagines pitch bending, in a way that enhances and simplifies how keyboard players react with MIDI instruments.” Krishna won over $12,500 in prizes, including a booth at the 2022 NAMM show, 2-year corporate membership in the MIDI Association, consulting from MK2 Audio and MIDI2Marketing, and a full Max 8 license. Watch Krishna’s 3-minute pitch.

2nd place went to Kevin Chang from North Carolina, USA for his entry Sonoclast Plastic Pitch Pro. Judge and YouTube sensationShawn Wasabi  said “Plastic Pitch Pro’s innovative approach to microtonality makes formerly obscure tuning techniques easy to use and understand.” Kevin’s prize package, worth over $3,000, includes  hardware from Expert Sleepers, a 1-year corporate membership in the MIDI Association, consulting from MK2 Audio and MIDI2Marketing, and a full Max 8 license.  Watch Kevin’s 3-minute pitch.

Leigh Davies from Wales, UK won 3rd place for his entry Playces. Judge Helen Leigh, creative technologist said : “This art installation, made from corrugated cardboard and electronics, offers sonic exploration opportunities for children of all ages—and enthralled the judges with its creative use of MIDI and technology.” Watch Leigh’s 3-minute pitch.

The livestream was recorded, and is now available on the Music Hackspace YouTube channel. Preparations will be underway soon for the 2022 event. To sign up for information, visit Music Hackspace. To join the global, web-based community of people who create music and art with MIDI, go to www.midi.org.

**********

About The MIDI Association 

The MIDI Association is the non-profit community for both the companies who develop new MIDI specifications and products, and the people that create music and art with MIDI. The MIDI.org website is the central repository of information about anything related to MIDI technology, from classic legacy gear to the next- gen MIDI protocols coming soon. Join the MIDI Association for free at www.midi.org.

About Music Hackspace 

Music Hackspace’s mission is to develop the largest online learning platform for music technologies. It was founded in 2011 by Jean-Baptiste Thiebaut in London, as a collective of artists and engineers. Starting with weekly meet-ups and seminars, the Music Hackspace now curates over 20 workshops every month on music programming, instrument design, and DIY electronics, for a growing number of artists and hobbyists. Follow the Music Hackspace on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  

About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $17 billion music products industry. NAMM is comprised of approximately 10,300 members located in 104 countries and regions. NAMM events and members fund The NAMM Foundation‘s efforts to promote the pleasures and benefits of music, and advance active participation in music making across the lifespan. For more information about NAMM, please visit www.namm.org, call 800.767.NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

For more information: 

www.musichackspace.org/mia2021

Link to press pack 

Jean-Baptiste Thiebaut

Founder & CEO

Music Hackspace

jb@stagingmhs.local

Athan Billias

COO

MIDI Association

info@midi.org 

Chalise Zolezzi 

NAMM 

publicrelations@namm.org 

*. -End-

Voting is now open to the public for the MIDI Innovation Awards

14th January 2021

For immediate release

Voting is now open to the public for the MIDI Innovation Awards

Everyone is invited to attend the livestream awards show, held on January 21 during NAMM’s “Believe in Music” week 

London, England – Music Hackspace, the MIDI Association, and NAMM have now closed the entries to the first MIDI Innovation Awards. The difficult process of selecting 10 finalists from 78 amazing entries – including hardware, software, and even installations based on MIDI – is now complete. 

The final competition will be live-streamed on January 21, 2021 from 12 – 2 PM PST during NAMM’s “Believe in Music” week. During the ceremony, the finalists will present their inventions to the all-star jury composed of Dr. Kate Stone, Craig Anderton, John Kao, Helen Leigh, Yuri Suzuki, and Shawn Wasabi. The event will also feature exclusive performances from artists SK Shlomo, Tim Exile, Shawn Wasabi, Dan Tepfer, and special guests. 

During the awards ceremony, the winner of the Popular Vote will be announced, and the top 3 entries will win prizes worth over $20,000. 

According to event coordinator Jean-Baptiste Thiebaut of Music Hackspace, “We were taken aback by the level of creativity, imagination, and innovation in the entries – and believe the livestream viewers will be as surprised and delighted as we were.”

Discover the finalists, and cast your vote, by clicking here

Watch the teaser of the event and set a reminder for the livestream on YouTube

**********

About Music Hackspace 

The Music Hackspace’s mission is to develop the largest online learning platform for music technologies. It was founded in 2011 by Jean-Baptiste Thiebaut in London, as a collective of artists and engineers. Starting with weekly meet-ups and seminars, the Music Hackspace now curates over 20 workshops every month on music programming, instrument design, and DIY electronics, for a growing number of artists and hobbyists. Follow the Music Hackspace on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  

About MIDI Association 

The MIDI Association is the non-profit community for both the companies who develop new MIDI specifications and products, and the people that create music and art with MIDI. The MIDI.org website is the central repository of information about anything related to MIDI technology, from classic legacy gear to the next- gen MIDI protocols coming soon.

About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $17 billion music products industry. NAMM is comprised of approximately 10,300 members located in 104 countries and regions. NAMM events and members fund The NAMM Foundation‘s efforts to promote the pleasures and benefits of music, and advance active participation in music making across the lifespan. For more information about NAMM, please visit www.namm.org, call 800.767.NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

For more information: 

www.musichackspace.org/mia2021

Jean-Baptiste Thiebaut, Founder & CEO, Music Hackspace: jb@stagingmhs.local

Athan Billias, COO, MIDI Association, info@midi.org 

Chalise Zolezzi, NAMM, publicrelations@namm.org 

The Music Hackspace has a new home!

Our residency at Somerset House ended in 2019, and we’ve found a new home at Goldsmiths University. I (JB Thiebaut) am now a research fellow in the computing department, where I will collaborate with academics and students to continue to organise seminars, workshops and artist-engineers collaborations.

Long time collaborators of the Music Hackspace, Tadeo Sendon and Susanna Garcia, are now focusing on their respective practices. I am thankful for their outstanding work and look forward to collaborating with them in the future.

I have been working closely with Max for the past 12 months, and I’m excited to organise meetups and workshops starting in April 2020.

We will organise regular seminars and workshops. If you are interested to give a workshop, or would like a topic to be represented, please send us an email.

Workshop topics might include: Artificial intelligence for music, Virtual Reality, Machine learning, Max, Pure Data, Super Collider, MIDI and MIDI 2.0, modular synths, VST instruments and development, Live coding, and more.

MHS needs your feedback!

The OWL: a programmable guitar pedal

A team of Hackspace and Music Hackspace members are currently working on a programmable guitar effects pedal called the OWL. OWL stands for Open Ware Laboratory, which refers to the fact that the entire project is open-source in both hardware and software – all code and documents relating to the project will be freely available under the Gnu GPL license.
OWL-V2proto

The OWL is based around an ARM Cortex M4 chip, and can be programmed using a specially developed software framework. The audio processing code takes the form of patches, which are written in C/C++ using a simple API. There is also a project called OwlSim which allows you to run the same patches as VST and Audio Unit plugins. This means that you can test your code in your favourite DAW/host before uploading to the pedal, or just have some fun building plugins with an easy-to-use C/C++ framework. A bunch of patches have already been written and are ready to be tried out.

The team ran a Kickstarter campaign last month to raise funding for a first production run of the pedal and raised more than £33,000 (over 400% funded of the initial £8000 target) in pre-orders. They found it hugely encouraging to see that there are a lot of people out there who are enthused by open-source programmable hardware. Currently the design is being finalised, with production scheduled to start in August.

Parts

For more information, check out the project website at http://hoxtonowl.com/, and if you are interested in getting involved in some capacity (this could be web management, PR, patch development, coding or hardware assembly) they would like to hear from you – send them an email at hoxtonowl@gmail.com.