Guitar Gym updated – Leafcutter Studios expand on David Mead’s guitar workout app

Way back in the mists of Music App Blog time (OK, 2013 to be a bit more precise), I reviewed David Mead's Guitar Gym app from developer Leafcutter Studios. I can’t speak for the USA or other parts of the world but, if you are a student of the guitar in the UK then I expect you will have heard of David Mead. As well as writing for two of the UK’s leading guitar magazine – Guitarist and Guitar Techniques – David has produced a number of excellent guitar tutor books. Compared to when I first … [Read more...]

Updates vs upgrades vs new apps – why we need a ‘paid upgrade’ system on the App Store

I posted a full review of Positive Grid's BIAS FX app yesterday on the blog. BIAS FX is - both technically and sonically - very good indeed and Positive Grid have undoubtedly raised the bar again in terms of virtual guitar rigs under iOS... just as they did when BIAS Amps was launched about 18 months ago. However, despite it obviously being a brilliant app and representing excellent value for money at the launch price of UK£22.99, not all iOS musicians have responded in an entirely … [Read more...]

Tools vs music – do the tools matter once the music is finished?

If you have hung around the Music App Blog for any length of time then you will know I’m a fan of iOS technology as a platform for music making. There are a number of reasons for this – and I’ll summarise those in a minute – but, equally, I’m also the very happy owner of a desktop music production system. My current setup happens to be based around an iMac but I’ve also worked quite happily with PC setups in the past. In its broadest sense, technology has played a part in music making for a … [Read more...]

Apple shows the love to iOS musicians – latest iPad ad focuses on music making

I posted a discussion article a few weeks back looking at some of the great things about iOS as a music-making platform...  but also covering the 'not so great' stuff that, right here and right now, means that iOS is not yet the 'perfect' platform...  'has potential but still requires work' might be the most suitable school report at present. At the end of that piece, I commented that, much as Apple clearly like to associate themselves with the musician community - iTunes is, after all, a … [Read more...]

Floating on Air – Are you ready for a new iPad Air 2 yet?

If you are as nerdy about the whole iPad thing (and Apple products in general) as I have become over the last three years, then I suspect that you have already watched the Apple Event video from yesterday’s launch presentation. It was, as ever, slick, glossy and full of very positive message about how the company is moving forward. It even included a good dollop of Apple’s sense of humour (which you will love or hate but I’m happy enough to indulge). There were all sorts of interesting things … [Read more...]

Recording on an iPhone – or how to hold a recording studio in the palm of your hand

A good friend of mine - and someone very experienced in the world of music technology - is a bit of an iOS sceptic. He definitely remains to be convinced about the merits of making music on an iPad (or iPhone/iPod Touch). Recently, he said to me that there is no way he would choose to do multitrack recording on an iPhone or iPad when he could be using a system built around his desktop computer. He does, of course, have a point. The desktop system is likely to be far more powerful than the … [Read more...]

Focusrite iTrack Solo audio interface for iPad – Music App Blog review

Budget aside, the most problematic aspect of finding an audio or audio+MIDI interface for a desktop computer system that fits your own specific needs is picking from the multitude of choices. Whatever you think you want in terms of numbers of inputs (with or without phantom power), outputs or MIDI connectivity, there is likely to be something available from one of the well-established manufactures such as RME, MOTU, Tascam, Behringer, Line 6, Apogee, NI, Avid, M-Audio, Alesis, etc. However, … [Read more...]

Music App Review – David Mead’s Guitar Gym by Leafcutter Studios

I can’t speak for the USA or other parts of the world but, if you are a student of the guitar in the UK then I expect you will have heard of David Mead. As well as writing for two of the UK’s leading guitar magazine – Guitarist and Guitar techniques – David has produced a number of excellent guitar tutor books. Indeed, I’ve got two of them – Chords and Scales for Guitarists and Rhythm: Step by Step Guide to Understanding Rhythm for Guitar – in my own collection and, even though I’ve been playing … [Read more...]

Music App Blog question – What audio interface do you use?

I'm a little frustrated (OK, maybe not quite at the screaming stage yet, but getting close). I posted a while ago about the features that would make my own ‘ideal’ audio interface to use for music making with music apps on my iOS system. While different people may well have very different needs, my own requirements (well, for 99% of what I would like to do) would be for two-in/two-out audio of decent quality, phantom power on the mic inputs, two independent headphone outputs, MIDI connectivity, … [Read more...]