Soundspade is a software and hardware tool, enabling musicians to search, upload, play and compose, using a network repository of sound samples. The sound files are contributed to the repository from the members of the musician community. The software analyzes the sound files for different musical qualities when they are uploaded. The user searches the repository based on musical qualities, and selected samples can then be downloaded.

The Soundspade hardware is an embedded Linux music workstation designed to be portable and easy for musicians to use. It incorporates touch sensitive technology. The main premise behind the music work- station is to provide an integration of an audio and MIDI enabled com- puter and MIDI controller. The hardware supports Open Source MIDI and audio software making it a versatile workstation for any musician. With the addition of the Soundspade client software, the musician can upload, search and download samples from the Soundspade repos- itory. The Soundspade software downloads songs from shared iTunes playlists, and then analyzes, slices and ingests them into the repository for use in the hardware.

Full view of Soundspace instrument.

SoundSpade 3 - Benjamin Bacon.JPG

Images of the Soundspade hardware interface (right).

Archival video of instrument system design and development, 2006 (below).


Hardware design by artist, 2006. 


Instrument encasing design.

Music created by Benjamin Bacon via the Soundspade interface was used in contemporary Chinese artist Liu Bolin's installation video Hiding in New York.