Friday, April 1, 2011

iPad Band Project Continues...

After our coming Easter holiday I'm taking an elective block of lessons with a S1-3 group. We're going to try an push the iPad band thing a bit further.

Obviously GBand has had a huge impact on what's possible with music on the iPad but I want to do something that opens the feeling of playing in a group with other musicians to the children.
I'm thinking of seeing if we can come up with a number of songs to arrange for iPad band that have a message of change, or revolution. Songs that parallel the sort of changes we're seeing in education and perform them with the iPad band. Any suggestions would be welcome.

The setup I currently have is;
A fairly old 10 channel mixer going through an amp and into some speakers which are also not ideal but are the best I could lay my hands on. Cables to connect iPads to mixer channels. Belkin headphone splitters to allow instrument to be grouped - strings, percussion etc.
One of the problems that has previously been apparent is the difference in quality between apps when played through the mixer. Some, like Six Strings, have high quality samples which transfer with virtually no hiss. Others, generally cheaper apps for instruments such as accordian and bagpipes (!) have much poorer quality sampled sounds which come through at much lower volume and with annoying hiss.

Hopefully there will be parity across the quality of samples in the GarageBand instruments, these are generally all of a higher quality than the other apps I have with the same instruments.
It's an exciting project which opens to children who may not be at all musical, or at least not think they are, the experience of playing in a band. An experience which many of us have loved musically and socially. I hope also it may inspire some to go home, dig out the old acoustic guitar they got for Christmas in P7, and start to make music.

Here's hoping.

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