Music & chess

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@lowhum

This has been an idea for a long time. Chess notation has 8 letters and 8 numbers. There are also 6 types of pieces. So the data is there. Though a lot of openings would sound similar. There is also a visual component that could be used. Or just the emotions during the game. Maybe heart rate linked to BPM? A usual game of rapid chess can last from 3 to 10 min, so it couls also could be used as a model for a song. Just dotting some points here. If I get to holiday these days, i'm bound to try to write a piece about that. Any other ideas, proposals - welcome!

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My son (F#2) is obsessed with chess (started a little over a year ago and is now 1600 rated on chess.com) and is also a musician. I think he might be interested in something like this as a concept.

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Typical games range from 20 to 60 moves. Is that enough for a rapid chess length song?

To turn it into real music, not only sounds, you'd probably also need to find a way to map whole chords, not only melody notes.

Another mapping could translate the letters A-H to pan values, from -100% to +100%, to give an impression of whether a piece moves left or right.

Seems that others have had similar ideas: https://en.chessbase.com/post/a-che-music-formula No reason not to give it another / different try, though.

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@chldomn5

Not sure how it would adapt but could be potentially an idea... assign each square as if it’s an atonal 12 tone grid of the 12 notes, or some version of. Not sure on the numbers or if it’s viable.
Edit: also, it could be that each note ‘played’ in the game could be written out like it’s a fake book, so you come up with the chords or whatever around it as if you are comping

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@lowhum

I just had an idea with whites and blacks playing the piano keys:)

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@phlex

it's such a great idea - you could make it as complicated, or as simple as you felt necessary. I'd be crazy if it was a physical chess board that was operating hardware (a modular system maybe).

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@cblack

If the song doesn't end with the exclamation, "CHECKMATE!" I'll be disappointed. 😉

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@sbs2018

Every time I scroll by this thread, I think it says “music and cheese.” Maybe because “Wisconsin” is right below it - lol! Except now it isn’t.

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extra thoughts on this. not entirely focused on Ai but just a few thrown out ideas:
= captures could have a motif / based on what piece captures what ( pawns taking knights or castles, queen taking queen etc )
= opening / midgame / endgame - could have a change in the mood, such as tension building or releasing. Also, the chance of the king being captured could trigger a change in the tension or a motif, maybe the music changes speed, and when back safe it changes back to a calm level.
= blunders, mistakes ( if able to program the specifics, but something like a bot that knows what are good and bad moves could detect these ) could also affect the music somehow, either with, humour, shock, pretty much whatever fitting emotion
= if reading this game like an artistic music score, one could interpret it however they like. so lines could be recorded and random shapes showing something akin to abstract art could possibly make things interesting. this would work visually to allow the reader of the piece to put their own spin on whats going on. like how a ladder could appear when a bishop moves, and when a capture happens, it leaves behind some dots, or a shape of some kind, or even coloured whisps ?
= perhaps when a piece lands on a square, the colour of the square changes subtly. so this could be interpreted by a key of some kind... red = danger blue = calm etc etc
= maybe a synthesizer plays a note on each square, and the piece influences the tone or the pitch slightly microtonally. so all pieces on the board could be a warm ambient synth, and then as the game goes on, the pitches change relative to positions of the pieces. maybe simply being an on/off mechanism would be simple enough, just like pressing keys on a keyboard. the notes are held when pieces are on. and a funny additon = the relative weight could affect it too. so a castle is really heavy, so the volume is higher, or a pawn may be the lightest, so it may be lower in volume
just a few ah got