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IK Multimedia iRing motion music controller review

on Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

I don’t consider myself a musician even though I can play a few instruments (barely). However I do consider myself a musical hobbyist because I enjoy doodling around with the ukulele and music apps on my iOS and Android tablets. When the people at IK Multimedia contacted me to ask if I might like toRead More…

planet-waves-winder-stretcher

This Planet Waves string winder incorporates a string stretcher

on Monday, July 14th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

A couple of months ago, we told you about the Stretcha, a tool that would stretch out new strings and prevent tuning problems.  I ordered a couple of those for my husband and daughter, and they do help you stretch out new strings.    Stretchas are pretty big, though, and they don’t always fit inRead More…

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Recording music is easier with the UkeSB from Lanikai

on Sunday, July 13th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

My husband, Butch, helped me review the Squire by Fender USB guitar a few years ago, and he found that it made recording music in GarageBand much simpler because he didn’t have to have some sort of interface to get the music from his guitar to the computer.  I’ve seen a few other guitars thatRead More…

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PUC Wireless MIDI for iOS and Mac review

By: Mark Rosengarten
on Friday, July 4th, 2014

When the Camera Connection Kit first came out for the iPad, it immediately was exploited by musicians worldwide to use the iPad as a MIDI-connected device.  The iPad suddenly became a must-have device for making music.  Apps that mimicked classic synths like the Korg Electribe and MS-20 came out as well as production studio appsRead More…

blackbird

Ukulele’s made of plant fiber the next big thing?

on Saturday, June 28th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

I posted this earlier today on my Ukulele Review site: Some people may march to the beat of a different drummer, but as a fan of 4 stringed instruments you might strum to the rhythm of a different ukulele. We’ve reviewed ukuleles made of plastic like the Flea and the BugsGear, and we’ve even shownRead More…

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Comfortable, neoprene straps for almost any musical instrument you can think of

on Sunday, June 22nd, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

I’ve tried to learn to play guitar a couple of times in my life, and I’ve learned a few things.  1) When you’re only five feet tall, holding an acoustic guitar feels like clasping a baby grand piano to your chest.  2) Electric guitars are heavy, and you must have a strap to help you holdRead More…

leather-ukulele-hanger

Hang your guitar or other stringed instrument from any hook

on Thursday, June 19th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

I’ve seen special hooks for hanging your guitar, ukulele, banjo, or other stringed instruments on the wall or even in your closet, but they can be pretty expensive.  What if you could hang your instruments for less than $5.00 per hanger?  I found these Leather Ukulele Hangers for $2.00 each while checking out the websiteRead More…

amazon-prime-music-streaming-service

Amazon Prime Music – Amazon’s newest perk for Prime members

on Friday, June 13th, 2014

Recently, Amazon announced that it would be raising the rates for their Prime membership.  It was the first increase in years, and I didn’t think it was too much to bear, because I use Amazon – and free Prime shipping – frequently.  Amazon isn’t just increasing the rates to compensate for rising shipping costs; they’reRead More…

obsidian-guitar-pick

This gives new meaning to “rock music”

on Monday, May 26th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

I’ve seen plectrums – or picks, as they are more commonly known – made of plastic, metal, even felt – but the Obsidian Arrowhead Guitar Pick is made of volcanic rock.  These picks were created by Seth Maranuk.  A piece of obsidian, a glass-like material formed in rapidly cooled lava, is hand-shaped into the arrowhead shapeRead More…

seiko-chromatic-tuner-keychain

Be ready to tune an instrument, no matter where you are

on Wednesday, May 21st, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

If you play guitar or another stringed instrument, you probably have a guitar tuner of some sort.  There are a few different tuners around my house, but most of them are pretty large.  They’re certainly too big to keep in your pocket, for example.  The Seiko Chromatic Tuner Keychain is small enough to use as aRead More…

mobius-strap-for-uke

Put your ukulele in a sling

on Sunday, May 11th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

I’ve wanted to play guitar for years, but I just cannot seem to get the hang of it.  I finally decided to take a page from Julie’s ukulele book and thought I’d try one in the hopes that I could manage with four strings.  And just like with any gadget or gizmo I have, I’ve madeRead More…

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iRing is the first motion controller for iOS music apps

on Friday, May 9th, 2014

The creative folks at IK Multimedia have announced the availability of the iRing touchless motion controller for iOS, which was first unveiled at CES earlier this year. The iRing is a double sided “ring” that fits between your fingers. On one side of the ring there is a linear pattern of three dots, on theRead More…

planet-waves-guitar-rest-2

Carry a guitar stand in your pocket

on Tuesday, May 6th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

Guitar players probably have at least a couple of guitar stands around the house, but if they’re like my husband, they probably often find themselves needing a way to safely prop up their guitar because they don’t have a stand with them.  The Planet Waves Guitar Rest is small enough to go in your gigRead More…

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Forget guitar tuning problems with the Stretcha

on Tuesday, April 29th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

If you have tuning problems, it may be the strings and not your guitar, according to the folks at String Stretcha.  There are ways to stretch the strings using your fingers, but pulling on them at random places results in uneven stretch and using the “thumb and fingers” method takes a long time and causesRead More…

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Stay vertical with the Vertigo electric guitar case

on Monday, April 28th, 2014

Musicians who play electric guitar now have an alternative case option for their instruments that will not only protect them, but will prevent the need to stoop and squat to remove the instrument from the case. Most guitar cases require you to lay the case on a flat surface to remove them, but the MonoRead More…

guitdoorbell-2

Strum a tune to announce your arrival

on Friday, April 25th, 2014

We’ve probably all been in shops where a little bell tied to the door chimes to announce someone is coming in.  How would you like something similar, but more musical, to announce a door opening – maybe strumming a guitar?  Place a Guitdoorbell over a door, and the swinging of the door will move a mountedRead More…

electronic-musician-emergency-adapters-2

An emergency kit for electronic musicians

on Friday, April 11th, 2014
Posted in: Gear, Music Gear, News

If you are a musician using amplified instruments, a DJ, or the tech guy who sets the equipment up, you’ll want to have the Electronic Musician’s Emergency Adapters kit in your gear.  The kit includes a variety of adapters – male audio plugs, female audio jacks, and couplers in 1/4″ and 1/8″ sizes, cables, XLRRead More…

bugsgear-uke-1

BugsGear Aqulele plastic ukulele review

on Tuesday, April 8th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, Reviews

Plastic ukuleles can be considered to be both retro and modern. They were really popular back in the 1950′s with plastic ukes from Maccaferri and other brands. Over 60 years later, plastic instruments are enjoying a resurgence in popularity. Why would you even want a plastic ukulele? Because it’s an instrument that you won’t haveRead More…

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Amazon introduces Fire TV

on Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

Amazon just introduced their entry in the streaming-media box field.  The Fire TV is a tiny, black box that streams many of the subscription services you expect: Netflix, Crackle, Hulu Plus, WatchESPN, and many others.  Unlike the Apple TV, it also provides access to Amazon’s Instant Video, including the free content available to Prime users.  ItRead More…

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Zoom iQ5 Professional Stereo Microphone for iOS review

on Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

Over the years, video quality has gotten better on smartphones, but if there’s one area that hasn’t changed much, it is the audio recording side of things.  Have you ever wished your Lightning connector-equipped iOS device (iPhone, iPod, iPad) had a better microphone?  The Zoom iQ5 Professional Stereo Microphone for iOS gives you just thatRead More…

Neptune1

FINIS Neptune – an updated waterproof MP3 player with Bone Conduction audio transmission

on Monday, March 31st, 2014

Like most of you out there, I don’t jump out of bed in the morning saying to myself “YES! I’m going to go and do a grueling workout RIGHT NOW!!” I need music to motivate me. So do swimmers. The Gadgeteer has reported on various waterproof music gadgets in the past like the FINIS swiMP3v2 andRead More…

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All play, no touch: The Moog Theremini

By: Mark Rosengarten
on Thursday, March 20th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

I’ve played a Moog Etherwave theremin (badly) for several years now.  Hooked up to a Korg KP3 effects processor, you can get some really great effects out of it.  However, plucking notes out of thin air in a continuous scale is maddeningly hard work.  Unlike a guitar or piano, where the notes are clearly delineated,Read More…

ponoplayer-kickstarter

Keep on rocking in the free world – in higher resolution

on Monday, March 17th, 2014

Digital music has changed how and where we can listen to music, but there are trade-offs for the portability.  Digital files often sacrifice some of the resolution for size so you can fit more music on your portable player, which means you loose some of the details and nuances the artist intended you to hear.Read More…

tinypiano

REAL piano sound for your mini Mozart

on Friday, March 7th, 2014

Do you remember that toy piano you used to play when you were five years old?  It might have looked like the real thing (except for the color), but the sound completely missed the mark. Korg has updated this toy favorite with REAL piano sound in its new product, the tinyPIANO. This 25-note (2 octave) miniature uprightRead More…

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ToneRite claims to bring vintage tone to new instruments

on Sunday, February 16th, 2014
Posted in: Music Gear, News

People who play guitars and other stringed wooden instruments often covet vintage instruments because they usually have better tone due to years of vibrations from being played. But no one wants to wait 50 – 100 years for their newer instrument’s sound to “open up” and resonate more. ToneRite is an electronic device that uses specialRead More…