Dumb Songs is a collaborative musical toy, designed to give you a fun, play-experience by not taking yourself so seriously.
It’s a two player musical toy that uses physical arcade controllers to send MIDI notes and control signals to Ableton Live, creating a musical environment for two people. The controls’ touchability engenders a childlike abandon that better facilitates a fun and creative experience. The look is inspired as much by Dr. Seuss, Pee-Wee’s Playhouse and The Phantom Tollbooth, as my intent to use a messy, dilapidated, asymmetrical aesthetic to further convince potential players that it’s okay to play. (If it looks a little beat up, people will touch it.)
The collaborative nature of the work is evident in the sound sculpting as well. The layout, design of controls, and configuration of software were all considered, not only for their own pure aesthetic qualities, but also in furtherance of fun and collaboration. Dumb Songs gives you a chance to be silly and make fun sounds with a friend, stranger, or anyone else who happens to walk by. I hope that it will be half as fun to play as it was to make.