ANAHEIM, Calif. – Rising from the ashes of XO Wave, a digital audio workstation for editing music WAV files, comes Xonami, a real-time Internet-based audio editing tool that allows two or more people to work on a music file from different locations while keeping their changes up to date.
As one person makes changes, they are rolled into the work of others. As changes come in, you see them updated on the screen. The connection between the users is secured and files are stored in the cloud. Producers or mixers can either work on existing sound files or they can capture a live recording and work on it in real time, and no one has to be in the same room.
Rhythmic parts of songs are often programmed, but this takes it to a whole other level. WaveDNA’s Liquid Loops lets you program your beats and rhythms at what has to be the most insane fine grain detail ever seen.
Liquid Loops is an intelligent synthesizer and drum machine that let you build beats as a group, such as four or eight bars at a time. The beats are built with every possible combination of notes and rests possible in a measure, such as the 64 possible configurations of eighth notes in a single 4/4 measure. You choose from a wheel that shows the beats and rests so you can customize the beats any way you want them.
It sorta takes the life out of a drum beat, killing the groove a human provides, but that’s been the knock on drum machines from the get go. A free trial version of the Mac OS X product is available now.
ANAHEIM, Calif. – Jammit has been here at the NAMM show before, showing off its educational app to teach people how to play the guitar, bass, drum and vocal tracks of popular songs.
What’s new this year is the company has teamed with Line 6, makers of effect-laden amplifiers, to give iOS devices a genuine guitar sound. So if you are playing along to Nirvana or Sublime or Rush, the Line 6 connector will make you sound like those songs, and you don’t have to worry about fiddling with your guitar to get Kurt Cobain or Alex Lifeson’s unique tone.
Jammit lets you play along to your favorite songs, removing the instrument you are playing so you don’t have to play over it. You can isolate the parts, loop them to learn them, and even record yourself playing with the band. The app is free on the App Store, but songs, licensed from the artists, cost $2.99 and up. The Jammit song store has more than 1,200 titles.
ANAHEIM, Calif. – IK Multimedia has a number of Apple devices for musicians and is expanding some of them to other iOS devices. One example is iRig HD for iPad, a high definition audio recorder that makes quality recordings of vocals or acoustic audio.
iRig HD does a 24-bit A/D conversion for a signal free of background noise or crosstalk. An onboard gain control allows you to find the idea distance for the microphone to get the cleanest recording at the best audio levels.
iRig is already available for iPhone, iPod Touch and Mac. Pricing for the HD model is not available yet.
At some point or another you’ve probably seen a musician take their hands off their instrument and quickly flip a page during a live performance. Woe to them if they knock a page down off the stand.
The AirTurn BT-105 eliminates that problem by incorporating four programmable pedals that work with any iPad-based sheet music application to scroll the sheet music down so you never have to take your hands off your horn, axe or violin.
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Agile Partners has a number of Mac and iPad apps but not all of them were on all platforms. Here at the NAMM show, it closed that hole a little with the introduction of AmpKit for the Mac.
AmpKit was an iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch app that let you connect your guitar through an adapter and it would give the effects and sound quality of various guitar pedals and amplifiers. This allows a guitarist to experiment with different sound pedals and types of amps, since they all have different tones, to find the combination they want.
AmpKit uses two-stage amp modeling, convolution-based cabs and positional mics for the most realistic tone possible on both clean and high-gain settings. It runs in the background so you can play along to other apps, whether it’s a sheet music app or iTunes.
AmpKit is a free download, which comes with the basic configuration of amps and pedals. If you want to increase the library, it will cost you.
One of the first industries to adopt the iPad was the airline industry, because pilots were able to trade their 50 pounds of flight manuals for one iPad that held everything and was rapidly searchable. Musicians are following on that notion, trading in paper sheet music for a 9.7” iPad screen.
Chromatik introduced its eponymous iPad sheet music app that doesn’t just display music, it lets you highlight it, annotate it, make changes and record your own changes. Everything is stored in the cloud, so it can sync with a number of other devices.
ANAHEIM, Calif. — Guitarists have long had the option of a wallet-sized amp with a headphone plug, so they can plug in their guitar and no one else hears them play. But what if you are stuck on a six-hour plane ride? You can’t take a nail clipper on the plane these days, let alone a guitar.
Well, if the TSA doesn’t confiscate your iPad, yo uczn use MoForte’s Power Chord, an app that turns your tablet into a guitar. All you need to do is strum the screen. You can strum or pick strings, adjust the effects and even shake your iPad like using a whammy bar to channel your inner Hendrix. You can even do string scraping, where you simulate the effect of running a guitar pick down the string for that descending screech sound.
ANAHEIM, Calif. – If it’s late January in Anaheim, that means one thing: the North American Music Merchant’s (NAMM) convention turning the area around Disneyland into an even bigger madhouse. NAMM is for musicians what CES is for consumer electronics junkies; just a lot more hair and tattoos. More than 90,000 people will descend on this modestly-sized convention center best suited to hold about 10,000 max.
NAMM has run continuously since 1901, making it one of the oldest trade shows in the country. For the last 35 years it has come to Anaheim and has clearly outgrown the modest convention center, but NAMM is reluctant to leave.