One of our product specialists, Jarod Hadaway, has been a music production teacher at a local music tech school for the past few years. He had a chance to bring the Jamstik into class on a few occasions and document the experience showing the kids the portable MIDI guitar.
I stumbled onto this article entitled “The Technical Constraints That Made Abbey Road So Good” written by Justin Lancy of The Atlantic thanks to a friend sharing it on Facebook. Said friend is a busy, well-known audio engineer in NashVegas, so I tend to inspect his posts and mentions with a careful eye.
The acronym MIDI stands for “Musical Instrument Digital Interface.” In the simplest explanation, MIDI is a language (technically speaking, it’s a protocol) that allows digitally-controlled musical instrument devices to communicate to each other. MIDI has been around since the early 1980’s. It was primarily used with synthesizers and sequencers, but quickly got implemented on all kinds of musically-related gear (drum machines, mixers, drum pads, synchronization boxes, etc.)
As much as the jamstik has changed how people learn how to play guitar or record their ideas in GarageBand or other recording apps, it’s also a great controller for live performances. As someone who has spent years in guitar-based live bands with no keyboard players, trust me when I say it’s hard to cover three hours of familiar material for an audience in one night without running into a tune that needs a signature keyboard part.
Recently, I re-created Charli XCX’s song “Boom Clap” using only a MIDI guitar controller (jamstik). We set out to do as much as we could with the jamstik exclusively in GarageBand and the iPhone 6. The iPhone 6 really works well for this, so it’s not really a challenge to work only in the iPhone as a “limitation.” Like we demonstrate in our “GarageBand Loop Recording” video, you can record your ideas without stopping the music if you make your instrument track selections in advance.
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