amplitude modulation workshop

Amplitude modulation, like many technical terms, is a fancy name for a relatively simple idea. It's what makes the song "Crimson and Clover" extra dreamy, what makes a fire engine's siren wail, and it's the magic behind AM radio. This workshop will cover the basic anatomy of a wave, how to electronically combine two waves to create modulation, and how this fits into the world of wireless communications. STEM Modular music systems will be used to demonstrate these ideas, and for hands-on experimenting.

The one minute tutorial on how to create an amplitude modulated signal with two Low Frequency Oscillators (LFOs) and one Voltage Controlled Amplifier (VCA).



Wesley Marcarelli is a musician, electrical engineer, and educator based in Brooklyn, NY. In 2017 he launched STEM Modular as a playful and empowering approach to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) concepts through electronic music production. He has toured as a synth/keyboard player through North America and Europe, taught in NYC after-school programs, and currently works as a radio repair mechanic for the New York City Fire Department.


what is a stem modular music system?

A STEM Modular music system is a combination of audio building blocks that can be connected in many different ways to create highly customizable sounds. This is commonly referred to as modular synthesis, and it allows us to experiment with the fundamental components of sound and electricity. This approach to music was born out of the minds of physicists and communications engineers, and while it is more conceptual than strumming a guitar, it is relatively easy to dive into and provides a fun interface to more technical ideas.