Music Monster

June 2010

Music Monster is the music playing system that applies jianpu to a Wicki/Hayden keyboard with transposition.

Solfege with movable-do and annotated with number is called Numbered Notation or Jianpu (Simplified Notation) in China.

Jianpu is generally used in Sight Singing. As it is easy to learn, I thought it makes a lot of sense to play instrument with Jianpu as well.

In theory, any keyboard with transposition can be used as a Jianpu Keyboard. All we have to do is to "tune" the instrument by transposing it to the correct musical key.

Common keyboards with chromatic layout (piano style) are fine for the job.

On the other hand, a Wicki/Hayden or other isomorphic keyboards further reduce the effort to learn to play the keyboard by supporting consistent fingering across multiple notes.

My prototype design is similar to the other Wicki/Hayden keyboard design e.g. Jim Plamondon's Thummer or MusicScienceGuy's Jammer. I learned a lot about Wicki/Hayden layout from their articles. Their layout uses a mirrored left and right hand design.

The original aspect, perhaps, is to combine and (trying) to formalise Jianpu as a proper and legitimate notation for instrument playing with the Wicki/Hayden layout with transposition.

The ideal Jianpu Keyboard should have 9 physical keys on each row. This will eliminate the "edge effect" that forces finger wrapping for a small number of common chords. I have analysed common chord pattens on this design. I will post the result in another post.

The current prototype utilises 2 Axis-49 with 7 keys in one row. Axis-49 is a velocity sensitive midi controller from C-Thru Music. It is originally invented for Harmonic Table playing.

My Music Monster Setup