February 17, 2011 at 11:20 am

Web App Lets You Compose Music for Bells, Plays It In Real World

bells create compose your own song and play it in an office

File under awesome: TellArt’s Bells Jukebox, a web app that makes it easy to compose your own monophonic symphony for bells and have it played in the real world somewhere in Providence, RI.

Simply drag the bells, whose numbers refer to their place in a major musical scale, onto the sequencer below, adding as many rows as you need. Just like that, you’re a composer. You can preview your creation before sending it to TellArt’s Arduino-controlled solenoids, which strike the bells, and watch it play back in the real world. The whole system is quite simple, and it’s a thrill to watch and hear these real-world bells play your song as people murmur in the background of the TellArt office, so you know at least someone is hearing it. (TellArt told Creators Project via email that they’ve been rickrolled at least a couple of dozen times.)

The idea is reminiscent of another great web app for playing music in the real world: Silophone, which lets you pipe audio into speakers in a grain silo in Montreal equipped with a microphone for sending the sound back to you the way it sounded in the silo — basically, it’s world’s most complicated reverb pedal.

Our only complaint about Bells Jukebox: There’s no way to share a link to the song you’ve created, so if you want to hear our composition, “Ode to Chim Richolds,” you’ll need to enter the bell data as pictured above and play it for yourself.