Step into our time machine and explore musical heritage like never before. For over 500 years this instrument has been an essential musical ingredient in music styles across Europe, Eurasia and large parts of the Middle East. Forming a base of harmony and rhythm and a solid musical environment for melody instruments to perform in, spreading its sound from the early medieval inns, taverns in the Golden Age to the festive Hobbit scenes of the Lord Of The Rings movies. This versatile and distinctive sound instantly triggers the imagination and lingers on to colour the musical picture the composer tries to paint.
The sound is unique and has never been sampled like this before. The automated violin sound, with its constant drone and pivoting melody string lines, is an essential tool for the composer that needs access to a large pallet of instruments and music styles. Hurdy Gurdy is the Cinnamon of the musical instruments family. It doesn’t fit as a generic ingredient but apply it well and in the correct ‘dish’ it’ll create something you’ll never forget.
We’ve been working on a concept for this instrument for a while and we’ve been told over and over again that it couldn’t be converted to the keyboard in a sensible way, because of the unique way the Hurdy Gurdy creates drones, rhythms and legato melody all at once. But we persisted and feel like we prevailed.
It’s been a struggle to search for realism, user comfort, efficiency and playability. But the "Sonokinetic-Hurdy-Gurdy-formula®” we came up with is quite intuitive. It pushes the limits of samplers but still works within the safe boundaries of those dedicated sampling platforms.
When you play the Hurdy Gurdy you’re creating 5 types of sounds. 1) Drone sounds containing two strings, 2) a trumpeter string sound to create the high buzzing rhythm sound. (which only appears when you apply pressure on the spinning wheel causing the trumpeter string to slip and buzz) 3) two melody strings sounds, 4) melodies by pressing the knobs and sliding wooden rods on the melody strings to bend them to the correct pitch and lastly 5) mechanical sounds like pushing knobs, swinging the wheel and damping the strings when you stop spinning. All those sounds have been sampled and built into this keyboard orientated Hurdy Gurdy. You’ll get full control over all sounds to adjust your instrument to whatever sound you’re looking for. By default we chose a realistic and authentic representation of "La Fleur”, the Hurdy Gurdy that’s been subject to the sampling process.
Last but not least Hurdy Gurdies usually only come in one or two tunings. But Sonokinetic wouldn’t be an inventive and ambitious company if we’d settle for that. So "La Fleur” had to go through some painful adjustments to stretch the Hurdy Gurdy legacy to a new standard. With this library we present an instrument that, until now, hasn’t been recreated in this extensive way ever before:
Available in all keys, true legato sampling, 100% capturing of all sounds from this instrument, with all playing techniques transformed into a keyboard orientated composer. And the best of it, we’ve also provided settings for real Hurdy Gurdy musicians to play this instrument like the real instrument with left hand melody playing options.
Sonokinetic invests in a state of the art user interface with highly effective and sophisticated ‘under the hood’ programming and sample management policy. With over 1400 samples at your fingertips with a nice look and a beautiful sound we present:
Base samples: 1 instrument patch with the Sonokinetic-Hurdy-Gurdy-formula® script.
Single instrument for Kontakt 4.2.3 and higher with configuration panels.
Realistic simulation of wood effects – melody keys and handle.
Convolution reverb applied to the instrument to represent original acoustic spaces.
Sonokinetic IR options to allow dynamic assignment and configuration of the convolution effects.
Customizable key mapping to suit your preference. Normal or flipped style.
Hurdy Gurdy Reference manual (pdf).
Artwork : "Hurdy Gurdy” dvd cover. Designed by Pavel Fuksa
Programming : "Hurdy Gurdy” Kontakt script and instruments by Blake Robinson