If you’re walking around Maker Faire you may see a woman skating around with a strange looking instrument. That’s maker extraordinaire Jeri Ellsworth with her bass guitar made out of a Commodore 64. And did I mention she’s playing it while on roller skates? That’s talent!

Blake Maloof

Blake Maloof

I design games for work and for fun. I recently graduated from Savannah College of Art and Design, and am now employed as a designer at Toys for Bob.


  • Chris

    What?!? No FastLoad cartridge?

  • http://www.paperkettle.com Chris

    Technically not a keytar, but a sweet looking bass with a c64 body, right?

    On the subject: my friend Jordan made an amazing c64 keytar (that uses sid chips no less): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1LZUH0p6cXc

    • Marc de Vinck

      It’s a KeyBass! :) I have a quick video interview which I’ll try to post soon.

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  • Kris Lee

    Go back and take decent pictures! You should be ashamed to come up with such low quality images.

    • Kris Lee

      No, it still does piss me off seriously. You even present this blurry picture on the front page. How much lower can one go?

      Seriously Make, how much lower? Well, I know – when you print it.

      I feel so insulted.

      • Hebbaz

        Get back under the bridge… or run into the sunlight!

  • Hiram Cook

    It reminds me of the one on the Red Green Show.

  • JDP

    It is a keytar. The keyboard can be used to play notes and the F-keys change the wave forms for the keys and strings.

  • David Holt

    I talked to her for a while. Shes a chip designer. Also you used a FPGA to make that work. Now, thats dedication!

  • http://www.paperkettle.com Chris

    Ah, wow, awesome didn’t realize – so it pitch tracks the bass strings and matches the notes with sid tones?

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  • Chrome6

    I think we can all agret that Jeri rocks, keytar not withstanding :)

  • Chrome6

    “Agree”, darn I need some coffee…

  • http://www.mfwright.com Michael Wright

    Jeri rocks because she BUILT SOMETHING. Did a interview with her http://www.flickr.com/photos/45676693@N03/7242566258/in/photostream and will post to youtube later. I got a photo with her which was exciting as she was a featured maker (at that time, Jeri didn’t know she was featured on this site).

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  • ameyring

    What a major mod of a great old computer! I’m assuming the C64 is fortified somehow inside to prevent warping of the keyboard from the strings? Jeri riding roller skates reminds me not many folks do it and it’s excellent exercise and perfect for riding to the store without a car if you don’t want to chance your bike getting stolen.

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  • Poet

    Not being up on fashion. Is the lady in a DIY dress? Looks like one of those classic apron clothing hacks. Sorry if she bought it.

    • Michael Wright

      > Is the lady in a DIY dress?

      People at MakerFaire dress in all sorts of stuff. Jeri’s talents are primarily circuit design, regarding how she dresses, I’d like to see her wear a full skirt dress like what Gina Lollobrigida wore in the movie “Anna of Brooklyn.”

  • November

    I just found my new desktop photo :)

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