Building the Musical Voice For Today’s Story Tellers: Making the Mobile App Heartstring

Pete Mathias, T'17, Founder On March 28th, 2016

Topics: Apps Entrepreneurial Tech

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Paleolithic humans played bird-bone flutes to enliven campfire gatherings. Ancient Greeks plucked lyres to elevate the stage drama of comedy and tragedy. Roman musicians played water organs to intensify the gladiatorial games. Taiko drummers in ancient Japan pounded animal hides for dramatic tension in theatre. In ancient West Africa, griots strummed the Kora as they told stories about ancestors.

Indeed, music has forever elevated the stories we tell. And that’s exactly what I and a few music-making friends wanted to do with Heartstring.

The Product
Heartstring is the world’s first technology to bring to the storytellers of today what the storytellers of yesterday have had since earliest historical memory: the expressive power of music.
Today, we tell stories differently than the earliest cultures. Oral tradition is conveyed not by word of mouth, but by the click of a button. We press record, we snap a shot of our happenings, and post it to the choice communicative platform of our times: Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, YouTube.
We built Heartstring for modern story telling. With the swipe of a finger, you can add stunning 15-second soundtracks—created by our team of world-class composers, specifically for social media—to your videos, slideshows and pictures, then share your creations with the Heartstring community and to any other social platform you’d like.


Introducing Heartstring from Decade on Vimeo.

The Vision
Like writing a song, building an application requires vision. From a product development perspective, design has been central. We are fortunate to have an exceptional designer in Teddy Mathias, who has crafted digital identities for the biggest brands of today. We are now focused on growing our team—recently adding Margaux Harrold, a talented operator, to our strategy team. Additionally, we are looking to add technology builders, with a particular interest in the possibilities of Artificial Intelligence and music.
I joined my bandmates Casey, Teddy, and Johnny in creating an app that could bring world-class music to today’s storytellers. Not only did we want to empower the storytellers; we wanted to empower musicians, composers, bands like us.
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The Future
Developing our inventory, or music in our library, has also been key to our app development. Our music library presently consists of soundtracks from Casey Gibson, a generational talent in music composition who has written songs for hallmark names. Now, we are looking towards adding more artists and composers to our library to expand the musical voices we might offer.
Building a technology has proven very different than writing a song. But we are prepared for that undertaking. With the help of bright minds and institutions, like Alva Taylor at the Center for Digital Strategies, Dartmouth’s DEN, DALI Lab, and faculty at the Tuck School of Business, Heartstring continues to blaze a path on the frontier of music and technology.

We hope the stories we tell to future generations are better for it.
If you would like to try Heartstring out now before it is publicly released, email pete@heartstring.life

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