Less is more; part 5 – a compact iOS music app collection for music production

Starting around May of last year, I posted a short series of articles built around the concept of 'less is more'. The underlying idea here was not a new one but, if you are the kind of person who gets easily distracted by the geeky side of music technology and, as a consequence, sometimes finds it difficult to actually produce any music (which is kind of the point of owning the technology in the first place), then perhaps those articles will have resonated? Partly because I'm one of those … [Read more...]

iOS music in 2017 – the Music App Blog wishlist

Well, that was different wasn’t it? For some (OK, not all), 2016 is welcome to exit – stage left – never to be seen again. It has been a year of political uncertainty that, wherever you live in the world, the ripples are going to reach you in some form or another and at some stage during 2017. We also lost some significant musical talent starting with David Bowie in January and ending with George Michael in December. Whatever your musical tastes, the odds are that we lost someone whose work you … [Read more...]

Top 10 iOS music apps of 2016 – the Music App Blog selection

2016 has been another interesting year of iOS music making. As ever, we have had to deal with the annual cycle of both hardware and software updates from Apple. Fortunately, the introduction of iOS10 went pretty smoothly and, while the iPhone had a pretty substantive update, things were a little more muted for the iPad itself. Maybe evolution rather than revolution…. and, for me at least, I’d say that was a good thing. At a personal level, perhaps the only real disappointment is that we are … [Read more...]

Less is more; part 4 – Can you buy a mixing magic bullet?

I posted a short series of articles on the blog recently loosely connected around a 'less is more' theme....  the idea being that getting great results within an iOS-based music production system doesn't always require an extensive - or expensive - list of equipment. As I mentioned in the most recent of those articles, I had a few other ideas around which I thought I could explore that theme a bit further....  so, as I'm travelling away from the Music Blog HQ at present, and had a little … [Read more...]

Why choose iOS for music making? – iOS Music Making: A Beginner’s Guide v.2

I wrote the first version of this post back in late 2013...  but a lot has changed in the world of iOS music making since then and now - August 2016 - I though it might be interesting to re-visit this post/topic and see just what might need bringing up-to-date..... If you are a young musician just taking your first steps in your journey of learning, making, performing and recording music, it’s quite probable that, outside of pictures, you may never have seen a cassette deck or a reel-to-reel … [Read more...]

iOS drum app roundup – drum and groove-based instruments for iOS

I’ve done a number of iOS music app ‘roundup’ articles on the blog in the past covering different categories of apps such as synths, DAW/sequencers, guitar rig sims and audio effects. While these are perhaps of most interest to the newer iOS musicians (old-hands are likely to be familiar with the more popular apps in each of these categories already), these articles have always attracted lots of readers and generate plenty of ‘… but you missed out the brilliant XYZ….!’ sorts of feedback….   all … [Read more...]

Feature presentation – what’s your wishlist for your favourite iOS music apps?

One of the things that I love about music production using my iPad is that, if I choose, I can make music using software that doesn’t make my head explode with its complexity. Don’t get me wrong – I think there is most certainly a time and a place for sophisticated, feature-rich, software – but it can be all too easy to get bogged down in the intricacies of the toolset at the expense of getting creative if that toolset is overly complex for the job in hand. Tangentially, this is a point that … [Read more...]

Less is more; part 3 – a minimalist iPad recording studio on a budget

I posted a couple of articles (here and here) last week arguing the merits of ‘less is more’ when it comes to a working collection of iOS music apps and, in particular, a set of apps aimed at recording applications. In this third instalment, I want to pick up where I left off in part 2…. Before I do, however, let’s remind ourselves that this is not a new idea. There are lots of musical examples where successful artists have made brilliant music using only a limited range of equipment or under … [Read more...]

Less is more; part 2 – a compact iOS music app collection for recording

I posted an article earlier this week arguing the merits of ‘less is more’ when it comes to a working collection of iOS music apps. As I commented in that post, this is not a new idea. There are lots of musical examples where successful artists have made brilliant music using only a limited range of equipment or under some other sort of workflow constraints. The bottom line here is that access to shed-loads of ‘gear’ is not what limits musical creativity for most of us; it’s our skill level in … [Read more...]