Writing for the New York Times , Teresa Riordan has reported on a new patent secured by — believe it or not — modern-day crooner Harry Connick Jr. The new invention is an electronic sheet music distribution system that Connick has created for his own orchestra using Power Macs. Connick’s efforts are documented in a new article entitled Crooner Uses Computers to Replace Sheet Music (available by free subscription).
Inspired after a blustery outdoor performance caused his orchestra’s sheet music to blow around, Connick purchased blue and white G3’s for each of his 16 band members, “each with a rotatable screen,” according to Riordan. The Macs are used to distribute out Connick’s arrangements and compositions electronically.
Connick’s patent describes a “system and method for coordinating music display among players in an orchestra.” And Connick had none other than Mac pundit David Pogue to help him. Pogue told Riordan that Connick’s bandmates were initially skeptical, but the technology proved itself.
Connick does his arrangements on the Mac using Finale from Coda Music Technology. Having the Macs serve as a distribution system has greatly accelerated his ability to compose and arrange, Connick told Riordan, and it’s also saved time in the studio now that audio engineers don’t have to digitally remove the sound of paper rustling and the orchestra shuffles paper scores.