Vocal harmonizer? (Collier, Bon Iver)

Hi guys!

I’m wondering if anyone has explored the possibillities for a vocal harmonizer (similar to Jacob Collier, Bon Iver, etc) as shown in the picture below.

I’ve heard that Jacob Collier uses a “custom” harmonizer made by some guys at MIT, coded in MAX. (http://web.media.mit.edu/~tristan/maxmsp.html)

Do any of you have any idea how I either 1. could tweek an excisting patch to do this, or 2. translate the MIT code from MAX to PD? or 3. write this from scratch myself.



I’ve wondered about this too, the granular freezer patch does something similar. Would be really cool!

I’ve really wanted a patch like this too, we can call it CREEKS

I’d love a patch like this. I’m getting sick of my tc voicelive3, which has some cool presets and a lot of power, but is also loaded with some incredibly cheesy shit.

yes this is very easy



okay the IVER harmonizer is in Phase Two of building

it uses some soundhack external called +pitchdelay by Tom Erbe now even more famous for his work with MakeNoise

in addition, i added an FFT pitch shifter, two octave harmonizers and a stretcher

i hope it works


IVER crashed and burned. i made it too processor intensive and the two externals i picked did not build :frowning:
i am going to review it and choose some other pitch externals with hopes of it working

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Ok, i could not get a workining version of +pitchdelay~ anywhere So i moved over to Katja Vejer’s work with an external called sound touch and it gives perfect harmonic relationships
i am going to finish it up today and see if you all can use it before i proceed and add bells and whistles to it
It’s called soundtouch~ and it will make a very nice harmonizer on par with thos MIT kids for sure



I’m also very interested in something like this to process my clarinet/sax in live situations. It was actually one of the main reasons why I just got me an Organelle :slight_smile:
Ideally, I’d like to replace the keyboard as a MIDI input with some kind of foot controller - it doesn’t change much in terms of how building the patch in purely technical terms, I assume, but the actual challenge is that if I want to be as free as possible in terms of pitches/intervals combinations/“clusters”, I’d be limited by the amount of pedals available in the controller.

BTW, I have purchased a very interesting article from SoS about the making of Bon Iver’s latest album, and I thought I might copy/paste here the part specifically related to the “Messina”

Messina elaborates on how he devised the Messina. “Inspired by what Francis did, Justin and I got together and we tried every single vocoder that was listed, but they all sounded
like a vocoder, which was not exactly what we wanted. Instead we wanted to be able to keep
the character of whatever input signal we used, whether a voice or a saxophone. So instead we developed this thing which basically is a glorified vocoder. The input signal goes into Ableton Live where it is treated by two Auto-Tune plug-ins. The first just tunes the vocal, in the way Justin has always done it, and the second plug-in creates just a single note, the tonic of the key of the phrase that is sung or played, and that then
is sent to an Eventide H8000, which is set to a MIDI harmony program.
“Justin can play the white keys of a MIDI keyboard at the same time, and the H8000 receives the Auto-Tune tonic input, sometimes a dry input, and the input of the MIDI keyboard, and the H8000 generates up to four notes based on what’s played. It involves a degree of randomisation, so you don’t know exactly what you’re going to get. We’d then use a combination of the dry signal, tuned signal, tonic signal and the harmony created by the H8000 to make the ‘Messina’ sound. A lot of the distortion on the album comes from this, because the H8000 program naturally creates a lot of artifacts. When you’re switching keys on the MIDI keyboard it automatically creates this kind of clicking noises as it’s changing whatever harmonies it’s creating. We removed some of those clicking noises, but as also left many in, because we liked them. But a lot of the distortion is Justin and the Messina, with the H8000 doing what it does to the signal. You can hear Justin on his own with the Messina in ‘715’. That song is mostly just one take, though we did do a few additional takes, hitting the 8000 differently each time, cranking up the output to hit it harder. The way the 8000 reacts to different input signals can be pretty cool.”


We can add values to the footswitch but i think perhaps you might mean an expression pedal as opposed to an on off FS

Well, I’d actually need to (sort of) replace what the Midi keyboard player does in the scheme above - since my hands would be on the clarinet, the only thing I can think of is to assign to each FS a different set of predefined “clusters of intervals” relative to the pitch I’m playing. In this scenario I guess the FS would not need to work as a pedal…
Sorry if I was confusing :slight_smile:

i just got the harmonizer part working if we get pitch tracking you may not need footswitch for anything except turning on an effect. Standby the zip is almost ready


haha mate you’re on a roll!

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Wow, thanks! I can’t wait to try it!!

there is a clean input of course, a Katja Vejer SoundTouch External running the first pitchshifter the second is a high quality DSP Octave Harmonizer and the Third is the Second Harmonizer into yet another [Nested] so you should be able to create some chord densities if you set it right. Perhaps i should have given it a fancier name…hahaha.

Adding Fiddle + MIDI should not be a big deal unless fiddle~ kills the processor. it should not be to bad though then we can show those MIT kids hows it done.

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hey i did a huge fix, i saved over my last fix like a dolt so i re-uploaded. embarrassing. sorry


Wow, you’re just great! Thanks so much!