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.
The Essence of Creativity Pt 1
I, through luck, perseverance, education or good karma (which I’m skeptical about) have found my way. Not “the” way, but “a” way. This is a tech forum but there are creators here. It can be a lonely and fruitless pursuit. I know how I felt at 25. Lost. I wanted to be a jazz improviser, but I suffered constant breakdowns. A spot of hope and then the inevitable crash seconds later.
I was fortunate to live in NYC in a building of several successful classical musicians. Ironically, I found my teacher by asking a percussionist. How he knew of Lennie Tristano (my teacher’s teacher) I simply cannot fathom. He was not even a jazz fan, But that recommendation changed my life.
So, my first piece of cheap advice is be open and focus on your goal. The answer can come from the strangest places. Secondly, when you get a message from the unknown, listen to it! I didn’t have to act on on Dick Fitz’ suggestion (yes, Dick Fitz!), but, thankfully, I did. My teacher, Connie Crothers, was a golden needle in a haystack of woebegone base metal musicians who taught for extra bucks. Additionally, she was non judgmental and supremely affirming. Rare traits, even in a knowledgeable teacher. So, ideally, yes, find your teacher.
But this is often not possible. Not everyone lives in NYC. Your music is probably not jazz. Money, time, everything conspires against finding “a” way.
What is the answer? The truth is that the idea of making great music is a very fun idea. But as a propellant it is a pretty low grade fuel. Millions upon millions think it would be fun to play an instrument and millions do. For the majority a few lessons can lead to a lifetime of enjoyment, musical interaction and hobbyism. I call this adjunct musicality.... supplemental, not essential.... and perfectly ok.
However, there is a small number of us here for which music is, not necessarily, the breath of life, but, perhaps, the marijuana inhalation of life. It’s what peels the skin of mundanity away from day to day reality. And that reality can be a pretty soggy grape to peel.
I’m staring at a ninth decade, so maybe you can take my word on this.... first, be honest with yourself. Identify your own truth shorn of ego and musical materialism. There is nothing really to gain. Not fame, not fortune. These may come to a select few, but they have nothing to do with a love of creating music, and often destroy it and life itself.
If you honestly pass thru the first gate.... of self awareness... and find yourself a candidate... be helpless. Like a baby. When I was learning tai chi the baby image was a big thing. We come into the world, unless there is a tough womb experience, without resistance. Without muscular control, without self judgement and criticism. Damn, we even lack the concept of concept. All this must be lost all too quickly in order, so they say, to survive.
And thus, the first barrier, instruction by others. Instruction not only in the things of this world, but more critically, how to “see” this world. Natural selection works against the small c creator in this case. The way that works in “real” life is not the way things work for the creator. Adam named everything. That was his job other than fucking and staying away from “sin”. He corralled reality for the rest of us and we never looked back.
But I’m suggesting the aspiring creator must look back. Must revisit the basic lies we are told about life. This is a big job... even the idea of “a job” is a lie at its root. But the aspirant does not need to get to the end of that road... merely embark on it. A questioning mind might be the best way to describe it.
Beyond these entering points there is only one more critical gate, IMO. And that is openness. Simply being open. One of the hardest and dangerous things a body can do. And yet the simplest and most serene state. A true koan.
So what do I say about this most important element? Well, I need to figure that out! Hence the Part One bit. But, in my own field of openness, I have confidence I can say something relevant in Part 2. We shall see!