Computers, tablets, even iPhones have grown into powerful tools for music making, but for many who play guitar the bridge from analog instrument to digital devices can be an intimidating one. The Jamstik Wireless Smart Guitar is a great way to cross the digital divide, a MIDI controlling guitar with frets and strings that feel familiar to any guitarist’s fingers. It’s also cheaper than most keyboard controllers (and certainly guitars), available right now for just $149.99.
If you close your eyes, the iPad drummer known as Appleman sounds like he is tearing up a real set of skins. What you see in his YouTube videos, in which he covers the drumming parts of rock classics like Marilyn Manson’s “Beautiful People,” contradicts what the ears hear.
But how would he do against a drummer on an analog kit? Fast fingers met fast sticks recently as the anonymous Appleman went mano a mano with 17-year-old drumming phenom Yamachika Takuto.
By the sounds of the exchange of solos and the cheers from the audience, the two battled to a draw.
The Apple Watch has been out for a few months now, and it’s given us plenty of time to decide what we do and don’t want from the wearable. It’s a versatile device, to be sure, but that doesn’t mean that we expect it to do everything for us. In fact, a lot of the apps that we use all the time on our iPhones and iPads would be ill-suited, if not impossible for that plucky little screen.
Here are some Apple Watch apps that wouldn’t break our hearts if nobody ever got around to making them.
Geography doesn’t have to get in the way of the band coming together.
A startup company by the name of Soundtrap Monday rolled out what it calls the first online music and audio recording studio, allowing musicians to collaborate remotely in real time using any operating system.
It will likely directly compete with Garageband, Apple’s popular software used to create music and podcasts that first launched in 2004.
If you dig creating fresh beats and smooth grooves on your Mac, you’ll likely love GarageBand. It’s a fantastic bit of musical creation kit for anyone, regardless of native ability or experience. You can use loops to make new songs, play your own music with MIDI keyboards–even make your own ringtones for your iPhone. It’s quite versatile.
When you download GarageBand from the Mac App Store, you’ll immediately get 50 sounds, 500 loops, 1 drummer, and 2 basic lessons for guitar and piano. Likely, though, you want the full package, which is available as a free download that expands the content to 200 sounds, 2,000 loops, 15 drummers, and 40 basic lessons for guitar and piano.
Apple has turned even the most modest weekend strummer into a guitar hero.
This week in Cult of Mac Magazine, our games editor and disco band frontman (!) Rob LeFebvre takes you on a magical mystery tour of Garageband’s latest and greatest features. He’ll walk you through a shiny new piece of kit called Drummer, plus get you ringtone making and learning from the pros in the Lessons store.
Rob has also kept his ear to the ground for all the other great gear you need to make your homegrown music making hit the right notes and, well, sound better. And definitely louder. Whether you’re rocking at home or taking your iPad with you on stage.
So. The beat goes on with Charlie Sorrel sifting through MacBook stands to single out the best, plus his picks for the best Apple-related gear and Buster Hein’s top choices from iTunes for music, books and movies you’ll be grooving to all week.