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Live Band Uses Wii Remote Instruments

by Matt Miller on Jul 19, 2010 at 07:10 AM

The one-man band Jazari utilizes complex software and two Wii remotes to craft some remarkable music.

Patrick Flanagan is the designer and musician behind Jazari, an experimental band with a unique Latin- and African-inspired vibe. The music, in its final form, sounds most like the product of a multi-person drum circle, but most of the band's music is created through the interface of two simple Wii remotes.

Flanagan designed a complex software program that reads his inputs from the Wii remotes, and translates them into music played on live instruments. The remote connects up to his laptop. The laptop speaks to an electromagnet. The electromagnet signals a rod that strikes the drum or other instrument. Most of Jazari's music combines the use of drums like the djembe and bongo, but the band is expanding its repertoire to include other instruments.

National Public Radio has a fascinating interview with Flanagan about the process behind his unique musical creation, but you can get a taste of the band's sound below. The first video reveals the process behind Flanagan's music, including details about how exactly he manipulates the remote. The second video is one of his compositions.