DrumPants are a set of pants that enable the wearer to produce drum sounds by hitting various parts of the pants with his hands. The wearer thusly becomes a cyborg musician, his body assuming the roles of both player and instrument, allowing for spontaneous electric hambone solos or even collaborations with other musicians in a band setting on stage, on the street, on the bus, anywhere and anytime!
The Story Behind the Pants and the VJacket
A live performance with DrumPants + LoopStation to make a completely improvised piece.
DrumPants are simply a pair of pants with sensors embedded in them. They are completely portable and comfortable to wear. When hit, the sensors send MIDI signals to any MIDI device (be it a drum machine, synthesizer, keyboard sampler or computer) which in turn plays drum samples through the speakers. The pants are also Bluetooth enabled, so they can send the MIDI information wirelessly to a laptop or even a cell phone up to 30 feet away.
Since DrumPants merely send MIDI notes, they can be used for more than just drum sounds, such as piano and other synthesizers, or even be used to control live video. A recent collaboration with digital artists Marc Sciglimpaglia and Phoenix Toews uses DrumPants hooked up to a Nintendo to play Mario (and other games) with music.
Ideally, a cyborg needs a type of virtual proprioception of its artificial parts. With any cybernetic interface, a question of feedback comes in: how does the user know where to hit? A visual response when the user triggers a drum, like a perimeter of colored LEDs outlining the hit area, would offer spatial as well as temporal feedback, bringing the virtual drums further into reality.
You can also use a set of drumsticks instead of your hands for more precise drumming, but unless you're going to surgically attach them to your hands, you won't be a true cyborg.
Once DrumPants are manufactured and available on the market, they will open up possibilities for entire cyborg bands and marching drum armies to arise, as well as give people who do not have space for a whole drumset a chance to drum in their own homes (or in the streets, on the bus, etc.).
Click here for instructions on how to make your own pair of DrumPants (for personal, non-commercial use only).