Audiobus: Use your music apps together.

What is Audiobus?Audiobus is an award-winning music app for iPhone and iPad which lets you use your other music apps together. Chain effects on your favourite synth, run the output of apps or Audio Units into an app like GarageBand or Loopy, or select a different audio interface output for each app. Route MIDI between apps — drive a synth from a MIDI sequencer, or add an arpeggiator to your MIDI keyboard — or sync with your external MIDI gear. And control your entire setup from a MIDI controller.

Download on the App Store

Audiobus is the app that makes the rest of your setup better.

Keep On Running - Spencer Davis Group cover by Daveypoo, The Mobile Music Minstrel

Just finished another track, thought I'd share it here with you lovely people. Would love to know your thoughts - here's looking at you @McD @LinearLineman @thesoundtestroom @flo26 @Lady_App_titude

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Comments

  • Damn, I wish you had made this on iOS! Great clarity. Love that Hammond ( it is a Hammond, right?) love it from 2:20. Restrained but right in the socket. Guess you stayed in one place for this, Mobile Minstrel.
    Good goin’.

  • edited September 12

    I DID do this on iOS - 100%. The guitar, bass and vocals are analogue but everything else is iOS.

    Thanks for the compliments - clarity is especially important to me in a mix so I work very hard at making sure things can be heard unless the point is otherwise.

    The Hammond is Galileo 2 - but I am proud of the performance as it's live with a few tweaks.

    The dub bit was a challenge to stay relatively true to the style but still make it my own. Thank God for the spring reverb AUv3 from iVCS3 😜

  • You are talented Dave.

    There is tons to love about this including the freak out.

    I’m not sure the Hammond sounds right. The drums sound too polished, if that’s possible. And while I love to hear vocals forward in any mix, I would perhaps lower them a bit. Great work

  • Totally subjective, but the tempo seems fast.

  • Solid guitar and bass playing, dynamic vocal performance... thumbs up

  • I really like the vocals! Is that you singing? Did you play all the parts on this? Would be interested to know more about how this was done, who is playing, what instruments/apps, how it was recorded and mixed etc.

  • Your voice is very good... good pitch, lots of energy and vocal inflections to for a white-eyed soul style of singing... like Bobby Hatfiled (the shorter Righteous Brother that sang Unchained Melody). It cuts through the mix and you can hear every syllable of the lyrics.

    The production is tight and a lot of fun with that slow section and the delay FX.

    That drum track is kicking' serious bou-tay... please explain how it was made.

    Did you also play the rhythm guitar in audio? How many takes did that take? The tempo is
    really smoking' too. You must like to challenge yourself.

    Please share a million details about the apps, the instruments, FX, DAW process, etc.

  • edited September 13

    Poo man more Muff (Winwood) than Steve, yet still add own quality. Dub section excellent.

  • That’s a good one @Daveypoo !!
    The sound is impressive! Energy and groove!
    For me,the dub part is a little bit long! I should have appreciated more « madness ».By this i mean more sonic creativity😉.
    Really good!
    Bravo.
    Flo

  • edited September 13

    Excellent - thanks for the feedback!

    Here's what I used on this track:

    Gibson SG (direct in, amp tones with Tonestack)
    Fender Precision Bass (through a Sadowsky preamp & my Genzler MG-800 amp head)
    Behringer Model D (synth bass during dub section)
    Live vocals

    Cubasis
    Galileo 2 (Hammond Organ)
    iVCS3 Spring Reverb
    RE-1 Tape Delay
    Kleverb
    Reggae Drummer (Drums)
    Pro-Q 3
    FAC Maxima
    Tonestack
    Reamp
    Limiter
    Haaze
    Visual Reverb
    Neo-Soul Keys (Clavinet)
    Bismark BS16i (Melodica)
    Beathawk (extra crash cymbals)
    FAC Bandit
    Final Touch

    @audiobussy - Yes, the organ and drums are a bit "polished" sounding. To my mind that's part of the problem with using apps in place of live instruments - those app instruments ALWAYS sound more "produced" than the live instruments to my ears, and as a producer you can either get all the other live instruments to sound just as "shiny" or try to "dirty up" the instruments. I went with the latter to mixed results. But, since I'm only doing this for my own enjoyment, I don't care too much as I'm in the ballpark I wanted to be in. The tempo is deliberately fast - I wanted to push it faster than I would normally go just to do something different - give it a weird sense of urgency - and then when it cuts to 1/2 time in the second half it makes more sense. And yes - the vocals are deliberately loud. I tend to want to hide the vocals, and to be fair when you listen back to most pop/rock/radio tracks, the vocals are often much louder than you would expect. I wanted them to be way out front, warts and all, to force myself to deal with it rather than hiding it. May have gone a tad loud, but I'm ok with it.

    @Lady_App_titude - Performed everything myself (programmed the drums, of course). Yep - that's me singing. Live guitar and bass, tried to "perform" the organ, clav and melodica part as much as I could with a few tweaks for bum notes & such. I arranged the drums first, then played the bass to it. Organ was third, then guitars. I sang the lead until I was reasonably happy with it, and then enlisted some friends to give me six "Hey Hey Heys" that I edited in at the last minute. For the dub bit at the end, I performed every instrument all the way through, and then selectively cut out bits until I had what I liked - I deliberately wanted to orchestrate it in such a way that no instrument really plays when another is, sort of cutting between little bits of each while leaving space. Then I added the spring reverb bombs on the drums and the tape echo in the same way - no two instruments using the effects at the same time. Cubasis limited how many send effects I could use, so I just stuck with these two effects and worked them as best I could. Mixed in Cubasis and ran through Final Touch for a little sparkle.

    @McD Thanks for the feedback on my vocals - I love singing, and feel I have a decent voice but struggle with recording it. I'd like to have a little more real soul in the performance and have it sound less bland - but whatever, I'm a white guy - gimme a break. I can't even claim to be English like Winwood to get away with it. The drums are all Reggae Drummer. I created a custom kit from the included samples, and tried to guess what the levels of the drum mix needed to be for the final production while laying this down first - that's a bit of a challenge. I'd love for the Lumbeat apps to have multiple audio outs per drum. I deliberately wanted to show that Reggae Drummer can do WAY more than just Reggae - the algorithm is SO good. I did add in some additional crash cymbals with Beathawk. I've been supplimenting drums with fake cymbals for years, and I find it can be very effective. Also, given that I'm stuck with a "take" from whatever Reggae Drummer decides to play, it helps to be able to add some punch to specific points in the arrangement (for instance the double hits coming out of the drum break in the dub section). Yes - two rhythm guitar track, one left and one right (just doing quarter note chanks). Both performed - took a few takes, maybe 4 or 5, but not too many. The tempo was a bit of a challenge, but that was the point.

    @flo26 Thanks for the feedback. I would've liked the dub to go LONGER actually, to be more true to the style, but with Cubasis limiting me to 3 send effects, I had limited options. The first send effect was for Kleverb, and that was the room reverb that I put the "band" in - the guitars, vocals, and keys all had this reverb on them to give more of an effect of everyone recording live in the same room. The other 2 sends were for the spring reverb and tape delay, and there were limited automation options, and since Cubasis bounces their mixdowns, it was going to be a pain in the ass for me to try to export a live session to play the tape delay live during the mix, so I just embraced this and automated what I could. This left me with less options to change it up, so I did what I could and then brought the fade in when I felt there wasn't much more to say.

    Glad you all liked it - no plans for release or anything, just trying out some new/old ideas. I like the idea of trying to recreate a live band with all these apps, so I'm seeing where I can blur the lines.

  • Love it - great vocal!

  • @richardyot said:
    Love it - great vocal!

    Thanks - I'm EXTREMELY self-conscious, so I appreciate it!

  • edited September 13

    @Daveypoo said:

    I'd like to have a little more real soul in the performance and have it sound less bland - but whatever, I'm a white guy - gimme a break. I can't even claim to be English like Winwood to get away with it.
    >

    Did not stop Bill Medley, Bobby Hatfeld, Scott Walker, Gary Pucket, George Michael or Boy George. To name few white guy with soul. B)

  • Well, the INTENT is certainly there, @UnoWoo - just the performance is a bit stiff in my mind. ;)

    I kinda feel like if I loved 100% of what I did then I'd just be a complete @$$#0!e, y'know?

  • @Daveypoo said:
    Well, the INTENT is certainly there, @UnoWoo - just the performance is a bit stiff in my mind. ;)

    I kinda feel like if I loved 100% of what I did then I'd just be a complete @$$#0!e, y'know?

    Man who stay humble, never eat crow. :)

  • @Daveypoo said:

    @audiobussy - Yes, the organ and drums are a bit "polished" sounding. To my mind that's part of the problem with using apps in place of live instruments - those app instruments ALWAYS sound more "produced" than the live instruments to my ears, and as a producer you can either get all the other live instruments to sound just as "shiny" or try to "dirty up" the instruments. I went with the latter to mixed results. But, since I'm only doing this for my own enjoyment, I don't care too much as I'm in the ballpark I wanted to be in.

    The problem with virtually (pardon the pun) every virtual instrument Hammond (desktop or iOS) is that the presets are designed to sound maximally impressive on their own, but then they never sound right in a mix. They always have the Leslie panning in stereo, but almost no classic recording was ever done that way. The way I usually deal with it is to render the organ track to mono and pan it off to the side. That alone can help things sound more authentic and cohesive when trying to blend in with real-instrument tracks. (Then, of course, performance techniques like volume automation to emulate swells, and the switching from slow to fast Leslie, will also help "dirty" -up or "real"-up a virtual track). I'm not a super big fan of Galileo Organ 2. The presets need a lot of tweaking to make them usable, IMO. In some ways, I like Galileo 1 better. The Hammond Organ is a deceptively simple sound. It can sound completely fine on its own, surfing through presets, but can actually end up being much harder to get an authentic emulation in a track than one would think.

    I agree with audiobussy insofar as I would like to hear the drums and organs sound more cohesive with the liveness and realness of the track. That is to say, those two observations stood out to me, but I generally don't make negative critical comments, so I wouldn't have mentioned it. But since the topic is already out there... I usually like super dry drums on most everything, but on this track I would have gone with something a bit more ambient or roomy.

    None of this is a biggie, of course ... I get the "ballpark" your "own enjoyment" and all that. There are several things I would do differently if I were producing the track (sometimes subtle things that to my ear would make a big difference), but that is not my role. Overall, I really enjoyed the track!

    The main thing is the vocal, which is brilliant and richly rewarding in the "soulful" dept., IMO.

  • I hear ya @Lady_App_titude on the preset thing.

    For the Lumbeat apps - I don't particularly like the drum sounds. Soft Drummer has the best samples, but Funk and Reggae Drummer just don't "sing" for me sample-wise. I've used them to control DrumPerfect so I can pick and choose the kit, but no result has made me 100% happy, so I just decided to suck it up, use what I had, and keep moving forward lest I get stuck in the endless "this isn't good enough" loop.

    For Galileo - I stay away 100% from all of Yonac's presets in all of their apps. They make wonderful apps, but their presets are the worst offenders of the "let me show you what this thing can do!" mentality and are almost ALWAYS unusable. I start with a basic Hammond, then set the drawbars, leslie type, etc to my liking and tweak as the track progresses. I do like the stereo Leslie thing, but that's also how I've done it with a live Hammond - two mics at a 90 degree angle on the top horn and a single mic on the bottom drum (if I have my druthers and enough mics/inputs). But yes - too much panning on the Leslie makes me dizzy. And all the other bits help - changing drawbars mid-song, volume swells (as you pointed out), etc. I only go so far with this because I have such limited time and I could SERIOUSLY nerd out about all these things no one would ever hear and then I'd never get the track out. I've got entire albums of unfinished tracks because of this VERY THING, so I'm working to just let some of this go in the interest of just FINISHING SOMETHING.

    For me I just don't like the "glassy" sound of both Galileo and Galileo 2, but that's something I've experienced with EVERY B3 emulator I've ever used, so I'm kind over it at this point. I'm using what I got, warts and all, and not sweating the small stuff too much, otherwise I'd never get anything done!

  • Just yesterday, I was trying to find the right organ sound, auditioning presets..Galileo, Module.. Eventually, Module was ruled the superior choice by far. But then, when I tried it in the track, it was completely different, not right at all. Mainly, I was just surprised how different it sounded in the track. I guess because of the partials etc. and the fact that it can be constantly sustaining and can really suck up a lot of frequencies .. Also, subtle differences in volume, and the way perceived gain sits in different key ranges... I have not done that many tracks that use organ, but my main takeaway based the experiences I have had, is that it can require a lot more work (and automation) to get it to sit right than one would think.

  • Main issue for me about stereo Leslie (or stereo organ in general) is that is tends to eat up too much space in the mix. Sometimes you might want that, but usually I want the organ to function as a sustaining pad in the background that doesn’t draw too much attention to itself.

  • edited September 13

    YES! You're so right about it not always sitting in the mix right - I nearly always record it as a MIDI track and continually tweak the performance and tones throughout so it sits the way I want it to. I don't always succeed, but the intent is there. I also try to hide some of the "glassy" aspect behind a Leslie and C3 chorus to get that really "watery" tone. Helps mask some of the artificiality of the emulator.

    And yes - the trick with the stereo Leslie is to leave room. I'm big on spacing things out in the stereo spectrum, which is why the organ is front and center here with some stereo spread. The 2 guitars are left and right, and for the dub section when there's only 1 guitar, the clavinet matches it in the stereo spectrum. I did the same with the bkg vocals. All that leaves a nice big hole in the stereo mix for the lead vocals to be loud and proud.

    This is part of my struggle with going to deep with the Hammond on things like drawbar changes and volume swells mid-track - this can be very effective when used well, but if the scales tip just slightly all the sudden it can be VERY distracting. Threading that needle (not being an organist) is a trick. At the end of the day I gotta let go at some point, so I get to where I can live with it and move on.

    I'd be far more particular about all these things in this track if:
    1) I wrote the song myself
    2) I had a point behind this other than self-edification

    I'm certainly not going to make money off this, so I'm more forgiving with a throw-away cover that's just for fun than a track I'm writing for an album release or something. That's also how I can pump this out in a couple weeks while album tracks take me AGES. Kids, job, life, lack of sleep, videos, etc. always hamper my "productivity".

  • edited September 13

    Sorry if my critique came across as harsh. This is the first time I’ve commented on someone’s track and wanted to share what I heard.

    If you weren’t talented, I wouldn’t have said anything.

    I enjoy your video tutorials as well Dave

  • @audiobussy said:
    Sorry if my critique came across as harsh. This is the first time I’ve commented on someone’s track and wanted to share what I heard.

    If you weren’t talented, I wouldn’t have said anything.

    I enjoy your video tutorials as well Dave

    Oh no sweat - if I wasn't expecting constructive criticism, I wouldn't have posted ;)

    It's cool - just wanted to explain the decisions that led to the things you were critical of. I'm not offended!

  • McDMcD
    edited September 13

    @Daveypoo said:
    Thanks - I'm EXTREMELY self-conscious, so I appreciate it!

    All good musicians extremely self-conscious. It's required to become good.

    (There's a school of thought where you turn off self-criticism and tap your creative mind
    and everything you play is from the musical stream flowing within us, etc).

    I'm from the school where you labor over the development of musical skills and agonize over putting out something that doesn't satisfy your inner standards. This track shows you're committed to a high level of work.

    You have a voice that could fit one of the old Vegas lounge bands that played cover tunes that were show pieces. To sing in one of those bands you had to be playing an instrument just due to the economics of the time.

    Your track reminded me of the greatest jazz infused cover band ever recorded, "Los Blues" from San Antonio, TX. Their arrangements and musicianship made them legendary. Jim Waller wrote most of the arrangements and followed the Jazz Business Model of the 80's and become a University Music Educator in Texas.

    Here's an example of how they treated a a pop tunes of their time (1971).
    Try to stay to the end... it's chocked full of nuts.

    There was no dead weight in that 7 piece band and a high standard for performance.
    The bass player takes trumpet solos. All their recorded material is available at:

    https://www.youtube.com/user/txsrepublican/videos

    Now I'll go back cranking out improvised crap... What you do requires dedication, effort and fearlessness.

    Sing more... sing everyday. There's an instrument there. Perfect its potential. You don't need to every other timbres of voice like a Joe Cocker. You have a unique quality worth polishing.

  • Ha! I guess part of it, also, is just that I grew up on classic rock, where tracks were scarce, and keyboards in general were rarely stereo. A keyboard did one thing, and it stayed in its lane. That is the sound that you came to revere . But ever since like the 80s and presets etc., everything is this “super preset”, panning, fx, everything is maxed out. And now we can have as many tracks as we want, but we have to “de-produce” all these presets so they don’t tune into a mush of delays and panning and reverb all trying to be the star! B)

  • @McD - part of my dilemma as an "artist" is that I've never wanted to be a "cover" act, despite loving an enormous library of tunes and ape-ing them at every opportunity. I've been in an endless string of cover bands, both good, bad and ugly, over however many years. I've always admired artists who were unabashedly themselves, whereas I feel like more of a collection of the various styles/records/artists I like. So I go both ways with the cover thing - I can appreciate the effort that went into arranging the tune you posted, but it's a rational appreciation, not an emotional connection.

    For this and the previous cover of Spinal Tap's Big Bottom, I really just wanted to PLAY for a change, without all the baggage (for me) that comes with writing and arranging an original. This tune was borne from the same thought - let's just get something DONE already rather than dicking around with something only to have it languish.

    But therein lies the rub: my favorite covers are ones that redefine the original track. My favorite current example being Paul Simon's The Boy in the Bubble

    Paul Simon original:

    Peter Gabriel cover:

    I love Simon's original, but Gabriel's revision is ASTONISHING. My covers aren't nearly on that par, but that's the direction I'm trying to take - putting a spin in the tune that wasn't part of the initial scope but still works. Big Bottom was funky/acid jazz. Keep On Running was (very-white) reggae/dub. These styles give me a vehicle to exercise the playing muscle without access to the band I'd prefer to do it with. I'd eventually like to dive deeper here, but this is just a start to get the muscles stretched and working again. Once that happens, maybe I can get back to writing and feel more "artistic" and less like a copycat

    Hopefully that makes sense and isn't as rambling as it feels....

    @Lady_App_titude I have such a deep love and respect of the history of both technology and music recording that I struggle to straddle the line between "the way it's always been done" and "what sounds good". More and more in the 21st Century, all those all production styles/techniques, while still absolutely valid, aren't necessarily the only or best way to go. Since we all have these uber-powerful studios in our laps, it really does just boil down to what sounds good.

    I love the band Vulfpeck. Is their production on par with Steely Dan? Maybe an unfair comparison - is it even on par with the Stax records of Booker T & The MGs? Absolutely not. But is it less valid because the production value is "simpler"? Absolutely not.
    .
    This isn't to dispel anyone's constructive criticisms above, just to offer some perspective on where I'm coming from.

    I mean hell - we can't all be @LinearLineman pumping out album after album from Istanbul. ;)

  • @Daveypoo said:
    it really does just boil down to what sounds good.

    Always. The only measure. Always.

  • Gosh, Dave, I wish we could just hang out together for a while. You’re a complex and talented artist and a very good man. It would be presumptuous of me to say you have what you are looking for inside you (tho I managed to say it anyway)... I sincerely believe you will find the answer you seek. Meanwhile, you are creating beautiful stuff that people respond to emotionally. I know I do. Isn’t that what so many of us desire but have a hard time getting? You got to put that ability in the bank, IMO. A life like yours, so rich in musical riches, is very admirable to my way of thinking. You have worked for that over decades. It is very possible you will wake up one day and the music you dream of will be at your fingertips, and you will have an incredible array of skills and tools to apply to that new journey (which you will then see as just an extension of the old one).

    As for me and my output, if it wasn’t for the iPad and iOS and this community I doubt there would have been this new and unexpected chapter in my musical voyage. Undoubtedly the most fun and creative experience I have ever had. But it was a near thing, no? This time could have been a musical blank... I hadn’t really played for years. Five years ago this type of music production was impossible. Just luck and fate have brought me to this place (and maybe it’s even over as I write, who knows?). So, it is impossible to predict what can happen in an artist’s life. But one thing for sure, you’ve got to stay open to the possibility. Fight the negative thoughts or just wait patiently. You may have to move to Italy first... who the hell knows? It’s all pretty crazy. And, btw, I achieve maximum output by keeping my standards as low as possible!

  • @LinearLineman said:
    Gosh, Dave, I wish we could just hang out together for a while. You’re a complex and talented artist and a very good man.

    Jeez - flattery will get you EVERYWHERE sir! :D

    Seriously, though - trust me, I want to hang out as much as you do! Gonna be in the SF Bay area anytime soon? I'm busting my butt to get off-continent but my budget just can't make it happen fast enough.

    Y'know - it's the eternal struggle, isn't it? I was just talking with my wife (a visual artist and writer) about the desire we both have to be "taken seriously" in every aspect of our art. I spent AGES playing in rock cover bands. The whole time I wanted to be taken seriously as a funk/R&B bassist. So I create this persona online of just that, and I feel myself bristling when someone calls me a "Funk bassist". My mind and heart screams "I CAN PLAY ROCK TOO!". I'm in a room of engineers as a bass player, and all I can think is "I'm an engineer too!" yet in that same room full of bassists, I just want to be seen as a songwriter. When I was a songwriter, I wanted people to think I was a great keyboardist. There's no way to win with my stupid brain. I love and hate all the hats, you know?

    But yes - I feel in my heart that I'm stagnating here in the states and need some fresh input. Not sure what Italy or Europe in general has in store for me, but I'm ready for something different.

    And hey - low standards aren't anything to sneeze at. I take so goddamn long to do ANYTHING because my standards are frankly IMPOSSIBLE.

    Stupid brain....

  • It's worth remembering that "covers" are already a part of the listener's musical mind.
    The average person always identifies music in relation to the music that exists. You sound just like "Yanni" is intended as a compliment but might not work for you.

    When I was young we called it "arranging" and re-mix has a similar context. Repurpose the materials of the known musical world and make it fresh again. It's as valid as re-purposing images or literary themes from Shakespeare or the Bible and making personal art. The @Lady_App_titude has mined this patch for years and distinguished herself to the attention of Todd Rundgren, etc. It's still art. Just based on trying to move an audience through their
    pre-wired preferences for sound.

    An original project might just solicit the "advice" comments about the mix or some small detail and forget you just want to get a little respect for the effort. Been there, done that. I'm not re-doing this just to give you a better mix... I'm on to ceramics class to throw a pot. But thanks for playing the "tell me what you think game." (I won't tell you what I'm thinking.)

    I always try to give 5 positives and then get to the thing I would like to see changed. The 5 positives allow an artist to feel a little respect. Still, 5 pieces of advice and the whole enterprise seems flawed. Why bother?

    Stuggling for respect as an artist is a doomed pursuit. Society will tend to judge you on income. Aim for the respect of the artists you respect and you might hit the target. We all just want to be respected and valued as unique. But seriously, how much music can you find has value for you? Then there are the trolls that just need to settle some score by taking down everyone that tries.

    I think you hit the target. Keep on keeping on. Great videos, great music, great dad.

  • @McD

    That's very flattering & thought provoking. You three, @Lady_App_titude & @LinearLineman have given me a lot to stew on.

    Thank you.

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