Bumdrum: A Modular and Sensitive Percussion Controller Inspired by Hang Drum and Aqua Drum

instrument design, sound design

Client: Self
Category: Sound Design, Instrument Design
Year: 2010

Buggy Boy (Onur Uzunismail), a participant in the Red Bull Music Academy London 2010, presents his latest hardware project, “Bumdrum.” Inspired by his experience at the academy, particularly a captivating performance by Talvin Singh on the tabla, Buggy Boy (Onur Uzunismail) set out to create a unique and versatile percussion controller that could be played with the sensitivity of finger tappings.

Design and Portability:

The design of Bumdrum draws inspiration from the Hang Drum and Aqua Drum, but with a modular twist. Unlike its predecessors, Bumdrum allows for a customizable number of pads, enabling users to adapt the instrument to their specific needs. Buggy Boy (Onur Uzunismail) prioritized portability and durability in the design process, ensuring that Bumdrum could be easily transported without the risk of damage, and could be rebuilt with ease if necessary.

Versatility and Sound Manipulation:

Bumdrum is not limited to controlling virtual instruments; it also empowers users to manipulate samples, effects, and arrangements. This versatility sets it apart from consumer MIDI controllers like the M-Audio Trigger Finger, Korg NanoPad, or Roland SPD20 and Handsonic. The sensitivity of the pads and their layout on Bumdrum are carefully considered to provide a responsive and intuitive playing experience.

Software Integration:

In addition to the hardware component, Bumdrum features a software element that streamlines the arrangement of scales and MIDI mappings. This integration allows users to focus solely on playing, without the need to worry about the underlying technicalities. The software complements the hardware, creating a seamless and immersive experience for the performer.

Modularity and Customization:

One of the standout features of Bumdrum is its modularity. Users have the flexibility to incorporate as few as four pads or as many as twelve pads in their performances, depending on their requirements. This adaptability makes Bumdrum suitable for a wide range of musical styles and performance setups.

Transforming Objects into Instruments:

Bumdrum’s potential extends beyond traditional percussion setups. With the ability to attach the pads to any object, users can transform everyday items into unique musical instruments. This feature encourages experimentation and opens up a world of creative possibilities for musicians and sound artists.

Buggy Boy (Onur Uzunismail)‘s Bumdrum is a testament to his ingenuity and passion for creating innovative musical tools. Inspired by his experiences at the Red Bull Music Academy London 2010 and the captivating performances he witnessed, Buggy Boy (Onur Uzunismail) has crafted a modular and sensitive percussion controller that pushes the boundaries of traditional MIDI controllers. With its portability, durability, versatility, and software integration, Bumdrum empowers musicians to explore new sonic territories and unleash their creativity. Whether used in a studio setting or in live performances, Bumdrum promises to be a game-changer in the world of electronic percussion.