Mason Lynass

My music

Over the past two years I've enjoyed learning about audio engineering, synthesis, sound design, and various facets of electronic music. I've been heavily influenced by ambient and new-classical electronic musicians, from Brian Eno and Suzanne Ciani to the infinite variety of current music makers.

I've had limitless fun using MIDI devices and digital instruments in Ableton Live to create musical environments inspired by nature and life in the city. Some deep over-thinking of my personal music-making process inspired me to develop a system of generative music, so that I could focus on instrumentation, space, and character, instead of writing pitches and rhythms. Each piece of music on this album was generated from sets of rules determining things like pitch, rhythm, etc. using elements of chance and randomness, so that every performance generates a unique musical output.

As the musical director of sorts, when I perform this music I can't anticipate exactly what will be generated, which makes performing so exciting to me! It feels like a duet between myself and the computer - except I also programmed the computer, I guess.

Sample Pack - Mason's Percussion

a pile of percussion instruments on a couch in the studio

I spent a day at Johnny Goss' Dandelion Gold studio to record every small & handheld percussion instrument I own (and a few of Johnny's things too). We recorded more than 60 instruments with a wide variety of microphones. I poured over the audio we recorded to cut one shots and loops, then organized everything into a cohesive, high quality sample pack.

We used an AEA R88 mk2, a WA-251, a U67, and a pair of MXL V67s to record all of these instruments:

    Cymbal & Gong:
  • 17" Zildjian K Dark Thin Crash
  • 18" Zildjian Kerope Crash
  • 24" Keplinger stainless steel Cymbal
  • 24" Steve Weiss wind Gong
  • two pair of finger cymbals
  • cabasa
  • wooden frog
  • guiro
  • ratchet
  • singing bowl (C4)
  • slapstick
  • vibraslap
  • almglocken
  • two pair of claves
  • a small collection of cowbells
  • Abel, Sabian, and toy triangles
  • woodblocks
  • gankogui
  • qraqeb
  • a three tone bell my mom found at a flea market
  • Ribbon Crasher
  • so many different shakers
  • a small family of Altoids tin shakers
  • two angklung
  • duck & elephant bells
  • Indian ankle bells
  • Flexatone
  • three sets of goat hooves
  • two shekere
  • sleigh bells
  • thunder tube
  • wind chimes
  • Black Swamp classical tambourine (copper jingles)
  • two Hat Tricks
  • a few headless tambourines
  • Tambouraca
  • Kanjira
  • Chinese tom
  • djembe
  • udu

Adventures in live looping

While I worked towards my Masters degree at the University of Washington, I developed an interest in live looping, inspired by loopers like BinkBeats, Reggie Watts, and Marc Rebillet.

My live looping projects helped me to become familiar with Ableton Live, and I learned about automation, scripting, and all kinds of related music technology ideas.

Masters Recital

To celebrate my graduation from the University of Washington, I presented some music I had been studying and practicing for more than a year!

Here's my recording of The Fall of the Empire, Frederic Rzewski's eight movement speaking percussionist solo, composed for Allen Otte in 2007.

I made this video of Tapping the Furnace, a speaking percussionist solo composed by Dorothy Hindman in 2007.

This is the first movement of Steve Reich's "New York Counterpoint."


Here's my performance of the quartet version of my composition "Tesserae."

This piece won the Portland Percussion Group Call for Scores in 2017, and is composed with flexibility in mind: it can be performed as a quartet, or a trio (without the drumset part).

All audio/video recording, editing, and performance by me!

Sheet music is available from Tapspace.

Many thanks to Tapspace for publishing my work, my first (not self-published) published composition!

if you're feeling nosy, here's a list of everything I've recorded that exists on the internet.