The link below will open the Whacky Looper in a separate tab suitable for full screen viewing
If the sound becomes unsynchronized, simply press stop and play again.
This is a known issue and we are working to resolve it.
The Whacker Looper is an interactive sequencer for hearing, playing, and creating multi-part rhythmic patterns with Boomwhackers.
The columns of the grid represent all possible 1/8th notes in two measures of common or 4/4 time, (or all possible 16th notes in one measure of music).
The rows represent each note in the basic set of diatonic Boomwhackers. Individual circles at any point in the grid represents notes that occur at that point of the rhythm.
The Whacky Looper will play all the notes in the grid in a looping sequence from left to right.
The default setting of the looper is a simple ascending and descending scale of 1/8th notes at 120 beats per minute.
The idea behind the Whacky Looper is to have a number of players strike their Boomwhacker when the blue play head highlights their respective notes. You could assign one note per player, but a more common practice would be to have each player use two Boomwhackers of different pitches. For more information on how to achieve this, see the following section called "Distributing Boomwhackers Among Players"
To add a note to the composition, simply click on any empty point in the grid. To completely fill the row with notes, click on the + button at the end of the row.
To remove a note, click on its circle. To remove all notes from a row, click the clear button at the end of the row.
Play/Pause Button – This will start or pause the pattern, allowing you to see the play head and hear the notes as they are highlighted. Note - sometimes the animation does not synch with the music. Simply stop and start over again if this happens.
Stop Button – This stops the player and removes the play head.
BPM slider – This controls the speed (or Tempo) of the rhythm. BPM stands for beats per minute.
One way to think of this is at 120 BPM, there are two 8th notes per beat, so the player will loop every 4 seconds.
Beat Division – This allows you to change the beat division between 8th notes and 16th notes, which will also alter the corresponding BPM.
Delete All – This will completely clear the grid of notes.
Add All – This will completely fill the grid with notes.
Boomwhacker Volume – This slider controls the volume level of the Boomwhacker sounds being played. You can mute the Boomwhacker sounds with the button below the slider.
Drum Loop Volume – This slider controls the volume level of the Drum Loop sounds being played. You can mute the Drum Loop with the button below the slider.
Refresh the page in the browser to reset The Whacky Looper to its default settings.
Not all patterns use every note in the scale (or every Boomwhacker in a standard one-octave set). Having said that trying the default scale pattern which uses all the notes is a great place to start.
Typically, each player will have two different Boomwhackers, one in each hand. However, if working with younger students, you may want to have them only playing a single instrument (and you’ll want to slow the tempo down too!)
If you want to try the Whacky Looper's default setting and play scales, you’ll need at least four players.
One of the best ways to pair instruments is using equal intervals, which are the distances between notes in a musical scale. They are named like finishing places in a race after the winner (second, third, fourth, etc). For example, a fifth above the low C would be G (For a visual clue, look at the letters to the left of the grid. Start counting at the low C and go up 5 steps to G. Intervals always include the first and last notes in the counting). Likewise, a fifth below the high C would be F.
See the explanation below to learn how to play in the scale in Fifths or Seconds
Try playing in fifths with pairings as follows:
A second means that the paired note in the interval is just one step away from the origin note. This interval pairing provides a different challenge for playing the scale.
Pattern 5 is intended to be played in pairings of seconds.
Not all of the patterns included with the basic version of the Whacky Looper use all the notes. Pattern 1, 3 and 4 use a special grouping of notes called a Pentatonic Scale.
Pentatonic means “five tones”. Using a scale with only five tones can create some very nice harmonic effects (the top and bottom C are still only considered one tone).
To create the most common pentatonic scale, (As used in Pattern 1) remove the F and the B.
You can pair the remaining notes however you like, but here are a couple of suggestions.
Patterns 3 and 4 use a variation on the Pentatonic Scale where E and B are removed.
For Pattern 3 the players should use the following pairings:
For Pattern 4 the players should use the following pairings:
While none of the basic patterns included with the Whacky Looper use fourths, this is the most common pairing to use with the Song Wizard.
You can try creating your own patterns with fourths. Here are a couple of options when working with three groups:
Omit the top two notes of the scale for a more mellow, happy harmonic effect.
Omit the bottom two notes for something a bit crunchy sounding.
When composing your own patterns, you'll find that sometimes you may not want to use strict interval pairings. The important thing is to experiment, mix and match, and have fun.
Pattern 2 is an example of this. For this pattern, you will need to pair the players as follows:
We are in the process of creating new rhythms and tutorials to help registered users get the most out of the Whacky Looper.
We plan to include the ability to save compositions in the version of the looper available to registered users, and hope to have this feature in place by early 2023.
For comments or feature suggestions, please Contact Us!
We are experiencing some difficulties getting the Whacky Looper to work in all web browsers, on all platforms.
We’re working hard to resolve this, but in the meantime, the following steps may provide a solution.
This program seems to work best in Google Chrome, in both MacOS and Windows.
If experiencing troubles in Google Chrome you may have to specifically allow the site to play sound from www.whackywizards.com
Microsoft Edge seems to work nearly as well as Chrome.
Currently, the looper does not want to work in Safari. Hopefully the next Safari update will fix this.
In Firefox certain colours and buttons may not appear properly, and the sound seems to lag.
Internet Explorer will run portions of the program with some help. Click the “delete all” button and then choose the pattern you would like from the menu. DO NOT try to add a drum loop. Press play.
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