US Open Sessions

US Open Sessions

Turning tennis data into tunes, in real time

by IBM

See the full experience

The Story

Since 1992, the United States Tennis Association has teamed with IBM to develop tech platforms to entertain and help increase fan engagement, creating data visualizations from match analytics. This year, IBM wanted to do something a bit different. It worked with musician James Murphy to create the US Open Sessions, songs created from match data in real time using a unique algorithm. The tracks, which are available on the campaign’s website, are accompanied by animated graphics.

  • US Open Sessions
  • US Open Sessions

The storage, coding and extraction of data were all supported by the IBM Cloud. WebGL, Canvas, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, WebSockets and Node.js were used to create graphical representations of the music and tennis data. The IBM-created algorithm encompassed six coded “instruments” that generated different sounds depending on what was happening on the court, such as aces and breakpoints. Murphy then manipulated the sounds to produce songs. IBM used social engagement—Twitter and Facebook—to increase reach. Behind-the-scenes videos on YouTube gave users an inside peek into the production process.

The Technology

Technologies
Mobile
Technologies
Social
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
Technologies
Web/Apps
  • SoundCloud
  • HTML5
  • Node.js with WebSockets
  • Express.js
  • Klang/Pan8 Javascript Audio
  • IBM Cloud Orchestrator
  • Responsive CSS

The Results

Launch date: August 25, 2014

After the tournament, Murphy released 14 original tracks remixed from his favorite matches. All in all, the campaign generated more than 833K YouTube views and 1M impressions on the US Open Sessions site and SoundCloud. Many major media outlets covered the campaign, including Pitchfork, Vice, Rolling Stone, Stereogum, The New York Times and Gizmodo.

400

Hours of tennis turned into 400+ hours of music

187

Original soundscapes for the album

1.8

Million listens

The Team

Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide
  • Mike Hahn, Executive Creative Director
  • Ryan Blank, Executive Creative Director
  • Christopher Reardon, Executive Creative Director
Tool of North America
  • Patrick Gunderson, Creative Director

  • Michael Sevilla, Creative Director

  • Christopher Neff, Executive Producer

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