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Okeedoke Studios has updated their excellent song writing tool VCVCBC (Verse Chorus Verse Chorus Bridge Chorus) for the first time in 2 years! This is a free update for folks who own the original version, and is on sale for those that don't.

What's new in VCVCBC v2.0:

  • UNIVERSALNESS!! VCVCBC Songwriting Studio is now available for your iPhone/iPod Touch with all the same features of the iPad version!
  • Completely redesigned interface for your iOS7-trained eyes!
  • Audio recording for all types of ideas + songs!
  • New + improved audio samples!
  • Export as a VCVCBC file to collaborate with friends/bandmates/producers/enemies!
  • Export as PDF, text, audio, MIDI via Dropbox, Email and copy/paste!
  • Export to OnSong (and other compatible apps) with ChordPro Format!

Many other features, including:

  • Piano keyboard for creating melodies!
  • Brand new rhythm mode with Acoustic, Electronic and Vocal kits for quick beat recordings!
  • Easy song transposition!
  • Much, much more!

Buy VCVCBC on iTunes: $2.99 (On Sale, from $9.99)

Korg Volca Arps with Apps

Reader DSWO did a couple of videos demonstrating his Korg Volcas synced with arpeggiators from apps. He uses StepPolyArp in his proof of concept video, and here he uses Yamaha's Synth Arp & Drum Pad. He also gives some great details on achieving the sync with the Volcas. It's a bit quiet though, so crank it up!

Video Description:

I learned some things from the last video. The most important was: how to get the Beats synced! The trick is that both Volcas have to be playing. In this case, the Volca Bass is getting its notes from the iPad arpeggiator, but to send the correct sync signal to the Beats, it needs to be playing. Won't this interfere with your live arp? Not if you clear out the sequence first (function + 16).

Boring details: Volca Bass is getting MIDI clock and notes from Yamaha Synth Arp & Drum Pad, running on the iPad 2. Volca Beats is taking its timing information from the Bass. Both channels of audio are also being processed by the iPad. The right channel, Bass, is going through AUFX:Dub for stereo delay. The left channel, Beats, is going through Audio Mastering for stereo widening and a bit of equalizing (which you can see during the performance; I'm lifting the snare a bit). The Novation Bass Station II on the right is a delicious analogue synth, but this morning I'm just using it as a MIDI controller for the Yamaha app. Audio is coming into the iPad via a Behringer UCA222. The iPad's MIDI interface is the Xmidi Tab from E-mu. (This is a nice USB/MIDI interface, by the way: unlike the super-cheap ones, it doesn't introduce noise into your audio signal.) It and the Behringer audio interface are both plugged into a powered USB hub, which is what you see plugged into the iPad via the Camera Connection Kit (CCK). The whole thing is being filmed with an iPod Touch, which is getting its audio from a similar Behringer unit.

One more technical note: the Volca Bass has three oscillators, but I'm using just one of them here. Less isn't always more, but it can be refreshing, and there's something sinewy about the single osc that brings it closer to the Roland sound that the two Volca cases are obviously hoping to remind you of.

Buy Synth Arp & Drum Pad on iTunes: $7.99

Buy AUFX: Dub on iTunes: $3.99


Buy Audio Mastering on iTunes: $12.99

Z3TA+ Update

Cakewalk's Z3TA+ was updated with a lot of enhancements to allow interoperability between the app and the VST.

What’s New in Z3TA+ v1.3:

  • Import Z3TA+ presets from iOS, or Z3TA+ 2 Plug-in, available on Windows & OS X.
  • Import User Waves, MIDI Arps, Scala Tuning files, and presets via iTunes Sharing.
  • Export Z3TA+ iOS presets via AirDrop, or email.
  • Search Presets
  • Create Preset “Favorites”
  • Scala Tuning support
  • Copy / Paste Functionality for individual Oscillators, Envelope Generators, Low Frequency Oscillators, and Delay Effects.
  • “Please Rate This App” Button in Options Menu. Press to rate Z3TA+, we will not force a pop-up menu!

Buy Z3TA+ on iTunes: $19.99

I usually strip out all mentions of "please rate our app" from these posts, but I'm glad to include it in this one. It's nice to see big companies are not perpetuating some of the more annoying practices of the platform. Thanks Cakewalk!

Stacy Puckett - Amusements in E Something

Reader Stacy Puckett put together a creepy-awesome music video, with everything done on the iPad!

Video Description:

This is a "soundscape" produced using 23 seconds of video from my iPad slowed down to 15% using Pinnacle Studio for iPad.

I then ripped the audio out of the video using the app "BeatTime!" and saved it in Audioshare. Once in Audioshare I processed it using the apps Crystalline and Stereo Designer and exported it to MultiTrack DAW to add 2 tracks. One of Tera Synth and one from Alchemy Mobile Synth. That was mixed down and sent back to the Audioshare app.

I exported that track from Audioshare to Video Star where it was reunited with the original slowed video clip from Pinnacle studio.

I heavily processed it, added a few photos from my Camera roll, and just had fun with it. I hope you enjoy it :)

Long live iPad music and video production.

Buy Pinnacle Studio on iTunes: $7.99

Vote for Mobile Music Panel at SXSW 2015

Ashley Elsdon from Palm Sounds and Oisin Lunny, are trying to get a mobile music panel at next March's SXSW in Austin. They need your vote to show interest on the SXWS Panel Picker. I'm impressed to see all 4 of these Euros are prepared to head out to Texas! I'm undecided if I'll go to Knobcon and that's less than an hour from me.

Both Oisin and Ashley are frequent guests on the Digital Music Trends (DMT) podcast.