Musical instruments

roger linn designs-linnstrument-1

Synthesizers have been around for a long, long time and many efforts have been made to turn them into expressive, virtuoso performing machines.  Ribbons, X/Y pads and pitch/mod wheels have long been a staple for keyboardists but they all have one glitch...the expressiveness of the note is separated by two hands and two motions that [...]

3 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, News
ikmultimedia-iring-4

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 to [...]

3 comments
Posted in: iPhone, iPad, iPod, Music Gear, Reviews
blackbird

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 shown [...]

2 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, News
neotech-straps-2

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 hold [...]

2 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, News
bugsgear-uke-1

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 have [...]

5 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, Reviews
71zwA5TDEcL._SL1500_

The iPad is a very powerful system for music creation, but it lacks any way to get music in or out of it.  Numerous companies have tried to create iPad docks for this purpose, docking the iPad to a platform that has the connectivity that music creators demand.  So far most of them have fallen [...]

2 comments
Posted in: Audio, Video, TV Gear, iPhone, iPad, iPod, News
Theremini_Render.png

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, [...]

0 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, News
tinypiano

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 upright [...]

3 comments
Posted in: Kid Gadgets, Music Gear, News
tonerite-2

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 special [...]

3 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, News
ikmultimedia-iloud-7

When you've reviewed as many Bluetooth speakers as I have, it takes something special for me to be interested in reviewing yet another one. When IK Multimedia asked me to review their iLoud Studio Quality Portable Speaker I agreed because I liked the physical volume knob on the front of the unit. But the ability to use [...]

0 comments
Posted in: Audio, Video, TV Gear, Music Gear, Reviews
printed-guitar

For years I dreamed about building my own guitar, which more recently turned into a dream to build my own ukulele. I even dabbled in the craft by putting together a mini electric guitar from a kit that I purchased from Stewart McDonald. Unfortunately it turned out to be a wall hanger and not a playable instrument. [...]

2 comments
Posted in: Articles, Music Gear
mcnally-strumstick-1

I have a problem that you might share. I love music and enjoy creating my own songs, but I'm not very good at playing any instrument. I get all excited about learing to play something and then get frustrated when it takes too long to master it. If only there was an instrument that you [...]

7 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, Reviews

The other night while watching TV, I caught a new iPad mini commercial from Apple. This one features a little girl playing a ukulele and singing a song to her grandpa. The little girl is using Facetime on her full sized iPad while her grandpa is watching at the other end with his mini. Cute [...]

12 comments
Posted in: iPhone, iPad, iPod, Music Gear, News
Chrome Jam

Google's Creative Labs has just released Jam with Chrome, an experimental Web app that makes use of all the latest Web tech and allows you to select and play 19 different instruments. Instruments include guitars, drums and keyboard, and you can switch between instruments whenever you want. Up to 3 other people can collabrate with you [...]

0 comments
Posted in: Geek Toys, Music Gear, News
irigkeys

iRig KEYS is 37 velocity sensitive MIDI keyboard that connects directly to the docking connector on an iPhone, iPod, iPad or the USB port on Mac/PC. It is an ultra-low power device that can be used for hours when connected to one of these devices. It features a pitch bending wheel and programmability with storage [...]

0 comments
Posted in: iPhone, iPad, iPod, Music Gear, News
playground-1

If you've ever wished that you could learn to play the piano but don't want to take weekly lessons miles from home, I have a potential solution for you. It's software for your PC or Mac and Midi keyboard called Playground Sessions. With this software, you can jump right into learning to play popular songs [...]

2 comments
Posted in: Music Gear, Reviews
foldinguke

If you're looking for a cool gift for your favorite ukulele player, this is it. It's a kit for a folding soprano ukulele. The parts are made of laser cut bamboo. All you need is some sandpaper, glue and a few other miscellaneous items and you'll be able to build your own instrument that just [...]

0 comments
Posted in: Do-It-Yourself, How-To, Music Gear, News
kbow

The K-Bow from Keith McMillen is a Bluetooth enabled bow for the violin, viola, cello and bass, which is constructed of Kevlar and graphite. While the K-Bow may look similar to a normal bow, it's actually a real-time controller that will allow you to manipulate the sounds coming out of the stringed instrument for which [...]

1 comment
Posted in: Bluetooth Gear, Music Gear, News
korg-wavedrum-mini

Did you know it was National Drum Month?  Me neither.  But it's not to late to celebrate it, and Korg has just the portable device to kick your drumming up a notch.  The Wavedrum Mini uses Korg's legendary Wavedrum technology, but it's packed into a device small enough to take with you.  Tap the dynamic [...]

1 comment
Posted in: Music Gear, News
piano-apprentice-for-iOS

Combine the 25-key lighted keyboard from ION with your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad, and you're on your way to learning to play piano.  You  use the free teaching app in iTunes with the Piano Apprentice keyboard, and you follow along with the lights on the keys as they guide you to learning to play [...]

1 comment
Posted in: iPhone, iPad, iPod, Music Gear, News