Monome Grid as a scrolling light display

In preparing for a live show I realized “I’m not using my monome in my set at all” which is unusual for me. To remedy this, I decided to use the monome as a visual element rather than a performance element. I ended up creating a quick Processing sketch that accepts Ableton MIDI and uses the notes to light up the LEDs of the Monome. In effect, I can “draw” the light sequences in MIDI and have them appear on the Monome.

You can see the MIDI drawing element here:

And here’s some video from the final performance:

That video doesn’t highlight it especially well, but throughout the performance i was able to create unique LED “scenes” for each song. My next idea is to blend using the Monome for performance and for visualization.


That’s really neat. I assume as it’s MIDI this is not proprietary to Ableton live, right?

Thanks! I actually skipped a step in the explanation which is that I’m using a Max4Live device to convert the MIDI to OSC. Processing is receiving OSC, not MIDI. Happy to post the device & code. Should be able to do that soon.

Ah, got it. Not for me then, as I’m not on Ableton anymore.
I’m sure a lot of people would enjoy the device/code, though. Thanks!

holy shit! best monome thing i’ve seen in a long time! and the music was incredible too. thanks so much for posting this up. would absolutely love to play with the device at some point. really great idea!

very nice @makingthenoise!
i would love to test it and mess around with ableton’s clip follow actions.

Code is up here!

Heads up that I use Eclipse for Processing development, but it should run fine in the Processing IDE with just a few small changes.

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The next logical step: