The Sound Shirt allows deaf people to get into music

Years ago during the era of the CFNY Video Roadshow, we took our rig to a school for the deaf. The students loved it. Although they couldn’t hear the music, they got into the beats and the bass through vibrations. They experienced music through means other than their ears.

This brings me to the Soundshirt, a garment that “allows a deaf person to feel music on their skin and experience a live symphonic concert.” It contains 16 micro-actuators embedded in the fabric. Music is transformed into data in real time and distributed across the shirt in interesting ways.

For example, in the case of a symphony orchestra, the violins might be felt in the arms while the tympani will be felt in the back. It gets pretty immersive.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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