John Granzow

Assistant Professor
School of Music Theatre and Dance
University of Michigan
jgranzow [at] umich [dot] edu

Ph.D. Dissertation


My doctoral dissertation Digital Fabrication for Musical Applications is available through the Stanford Library at this permanent URL.

Stanford Library : dissertation (.pdf)

Embedded DSP workshop, Stanford

participants learned how to program microcontrollers with the Faust programming language for bare-metal high efficiency/low latency real-time audio Digital Signal Processing (DSP). Final projects consisted of hardware for musical applications such as digital guitar pedal effects and synthesizer modules. The Teensy 3.6 board was used as the main development platform. Its ARM Cortex-M4 microcontroller provides plenty of processing power to implement advanced DSP algorithms (e.g., feedback delay networks, physical models, band-limited oscillators, filter banks, etc.). Also, its various analog and digital inputs can be used for sensors acquisition. The lack of Operating System allows for the use of very low block sizes (i.e., 8 samples) offering extremely low audio latency. video

Axes, Society for Music Computing, Sala Unicaja de Conciertos MarĂ­a Cristina, Malaga

Luthiers use computer-controlled mills for the subtractive manufacture of guitar components. These machines have multiple motors stepping at variable rates to propel cutting tools in three dimensional paths with corresponding pitch contours. Axes is a work that brings these live robotic sounds of modern guitarmaking to the concert space. For this piece, stepper motors are fixed to the neck, body and soundboard of an unassembled guitar. The motors are driven in concert as the x, y and z axes of a toolpath derived from a digital model of the instrument. The pitched and noisy motors are filtered acoustically through the guitars components and are captured via transducers to become the source for subtractive synthesis. The actuation and vibration also make the guitar components mildly kinetic. MaxMSP is used for the additional processing and to generate nebulous quotations from the emerging guitars future/past repertoire, producing a collage of fine motor skills, both machine and human. Axes is a multichannel work that can be adapted to the channelcount in the space. prototype_clip

National Theatre, Taipei

Vox Voxel created in colaboration with Fernando-Lopez Lezcano was included in the concert of machines (5 concerts) at the National Theatre in Taipei, Taiwan in September, 2018. VoxVoxel is "composed" by designing a suitably useless 3D shape and capturing the sound of the working 3D printer using sensors. Those sounds are amplified, modified and multiplied through live processing in a computer using ardour and LV2/LADSPA plugins, and output in full matching 3D sound. 3D pixels in space. video

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