The Composer’s Playpen


A complete musical composition tool created on MAX/MSP by Barton McLean


  1. BulletRealtime recording of MIDI loops (via MIDI input) of up to 12 modules of unlimited length.

  2. BulletCan record either into MIDI loops or into MAX sequencers.  Can dump one type into another.  Can save all for future work. All on an individual module basis.

  3. BulletAdditional recording of two instruments which improvise on your MIDI input

  4. BulletFlexible loop length adjustments

  5. BulletKB thru, solo, module, or Instrument 1, 2 & 3 selection

  6. BulletAbility to play all this back in any combination with all modules completely independent rhythmically

  7. BulletEnhanced play mode where KB notes initiate and stop/pause play for that individual module

  8. BulletDensity control

  9. BulletCollapsed rhythm (see YouTube demo). Wild!

  10. BulletComplete control over which modules are sounding at any given time

  11. BulletVelocity, mod wheel, breath controller settings, including an automated feature where they independently change according to preset numbers

  12. BulletTransposition

  13. BulletRandom pitch during playback, including % of randomness and range of notes randomized

  14. BulletPulsed program change where program of selected module (s) changes via a predetermined tempo in seconds, via a group of preselected programs for each module.

  15. BulletFlexible stopwatch for live performance and recording convenience

  16. BulletMany ways of transposing sequences and changing tempi.

  17. BulletInstant stop/start of individual sequences.

  18. BulletAll this under precise preset control with a total of 2 master presets and 7 satellite presets

  19. BulletYou decide if master presets control satellite presets or not

  20. BulletClear visuals which monitor sequence length, loop length, attack/release of each individual note

  21. BulletProgram exists completely in MAX 5, requiring Macintosh System 10.6

Barton McLean performing his ICE CANYONS live, using his COMPOSER’S PLAYPEN program

Barton McLean demonstrating aspects of his COMPOSER’S PLAYPEN program as performed with his ICE CANYONS

See demos and performance on the YouTube videos below