Independent artists can now get their music on Spotify in Russia, Croatia, Ukraine, Serbia, Slovenia, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Moldova, Kosovo, Albania, Kazakhstan, Belarus, Bosnia & Hezegovina. Spotify have just launched in these 13 new territories…
It’s finished, the song is written, the pieces are recorded, the tracks are produced and the final mix down complete – what’s next? Creating, recording and finishing a track can feel like the whole process…
In light of the current situation and the struggles we’re facing, Spotify are helping fans and artists connect and raise money. Yesterday Spotify launched their Artist Fundraising Pick feature to Spotify for Artists. The brand…
Vatanator is a new drum machine for iPad that comes with extensive functionality, loads of presets emulating classic drum machines and even allows you to add your own samples.
Vatanator is probably the best drum machine available for iOS at such a modest price. It comes filled with 140 built-in presets that take their sounds from all the drum machine greats and classics. Not satisfied with that? You can add your own samples in and create custom beats using your own sounds.
Vatanator has advanced MIDI integration and Ableton Link support so you can implement it into most available software. The interface features two modes: pads or pattern sequencing, and also includes numerous customisation features. Effects include delay, distortion, reverb and filters. It features a sample editor that goes surprisingly deep for an affordable app as well as the expected features and more.
Here’s Vatanators main features:
Record patterns in real-time with quantisation. MIDI assignable
16/32 steps sequencer with advanced MIDI options
Fast loading of presets on the fly
Full MIDI implementation
Audiobus. Audiobus Remote. Inter-App Audio and Ableton Link support
Ability to import samples via AudioCopy. Dropbox or iTunes Share
Real-time effects with envelope follower. MIDI assignable
Song arranger. Ability to store a sequence of patterns and play them in order
8 channel mixer with volume control and mute/solo for any individual instrument
iPad retina graphics
‘Vatanator SX’ is the iPhone equivalent and is “coming soon”. It will feature a toned down interface but mostly maintain the great functions available in Vatanator.
Vatanator is available now from the Apple App Store for $5.99. It is compatible with iOS 7.1 or later iPads.
Spotify will power over 75 of Billboard’s music charts along with new Billboard features like New Music Fridays.
No matter your opinion on music streaming you can’t deny it’s massively important to the music industry today. Billboard, media entertainment company renowned for their music charts, are well aware of it’s prevalence and as of yesterday have partnered with Spotify to power their charts and bring some new weekly features.
Co-president of Billboard Media Group, John Amato said: “For decades, Billboard has remained the world’s most influential music brand because we’ve never stopped innovating and giving our audience expanded access to new content. Our partnership with Spotify will unite both brands and launch new features to better serve today’s growing digital audience.”
Over 75 Billboard music charts now have playback powered by Spotify. New to Billboard is a weekly ‘New Music Fridays’ article featuring a Spotify playlist embedded so you can listen to new music as you read about it. There will also be 3 new charts, you guessed it, powered by Spotify.
Viral 50 – This chart will host the top 50 trending tracks of the moment based on shares around the web and social activity.
Velocity Chart – Velocity features a top 30 list of cover songs that are getting the most love on Spotify
Spotify Rewind – Rewind takes you back in time through decades in music, selecting 5 tracks for each decade from the 60’s up to the noughties – ranked by popularity and revival.
Spotify chief strategy/content officer, Stefan Blom said: “As the world’s largest streaming music service, it’s exciting to partner with a highly influential music brand like Billboard to help expand its chart offerings. We’re pleased to offer passionate music fans the ability to listen to hundreds of artists on the Billboard charts alongside new content, powered exclusively by Spotify.”
Unfortunately you won’t be able to listen to full tracks straight from the website, you can however listen to 30 second previews where with the click of a button you’re sent straight to Spotify to stream the whole songs.
Rotor recently launched their website that lets you create stylish music videos based on what suits your music.
Music videos can be a massive part of your music career, they provide a new visual element to your tracks and give people who don’t know you a reason to check you out. Rotor have just launched and provide an incredibly easy platform to make music videos that look professional and unique in just 4 steps.
With Rotor you upload your song to their website and they then analyse your track’s tempo and loudness. Once analysed you will be presented with a bunch of video styles so you can choose the one that best suits your music. Then you use video clips to personalise your video, chosen from a library of Rotor’s own or any videos of your own.
It works best when used with at least some of your own footage though it can create a massive range of collage style videos without. If you add clips that match the song length Rotor will auto-sync so you can use footage from live performance, record yourself singing/playing or just align some cool clips.
Once all that is done Rotor gets down and dirty with your music, videos, and preferences to cut together a video for your track. After that you can view the video and decide if there are any changes you want to make. Then for a cost, starting at £5 the video is yours to download and use freely as you wish.
Gary Curran of The Japanese Popstars used Rotor and said of his experience: “Rotor instantly enabled me to tap into areas of my creative pallet, allowing me to present my music in a way that is engaging and unique.”
Check out a video created using Rotor for hip-hop group Rusangano Family:
Kygo has had a brilliant few years since breaking out and becoming one of the most recognised new EDM talents. With his debut release out soon he’s partnered with Shazam to give an inside look into the making of it.
Norwegian producer Kyrre Gørvell-Dahll, who you probably know as Kygo, is fast approaching the release of his debut album ‘Cloud Nine’ on 13th May. After a bunch of hit singles, including 4 number 1’s in his home country, the 24 year old star is using Shazam‘s song recognition and artist feed to promote his hotly anticipated first album.
Kygo spoke briefly on the decision to use Shazam as a promotional tool, saying: “I am so excited to be working with Shazam on my debut studio album, Cloud Nine. Shazam is becoming a great way for artists to connect with their very first fans.”
Using his Shazam Verified Artist profile Kygo will highlight the artists featured on his album by shazaming their tracks onto his feed. Follow his feed on Shazam to get an exclusive look into all the talented artists that show up on Kygo’s upcoming album.
Keep your eyes on my Shazam tomorrow around 10am ET… Big news on who I collaborated with on #CloudNine!
His feed reveals big names including John Legend, Foxes, Jason Derulo, Will Heard, and more. There are some unlikely features as well, suggesting an experimental range on the album, such as folk/pop couple Angus & Julia Stone and singer/songwriter Tom Odell.
Chief revenue officer at Shazam, Greg Glenday said: “Kygo is an artist who understands that Shazam is becoming an industry standard in launching a new album.”
Shazam have been trying to break into music releases for a while now; earlier this year they began experimenting with QR codes using visual shazamming to gain an exclusive preview of tracks.
MasteringBOX have brought their free mastering tech to Android in a free app that lets you master and perfect your tracks no matter where you are.
MasteringBOX is “the world’s first Mastering App for Android”. It puts the power of their popular mastering website into your hands, literally. Their Android app comes almost a year after their website launched last May and brings a number of improvements to the software.
The Android version of MasteringBOX features an updated mastering engine to enhance sound quality across all styles, thanks to better detection and processing. The app also features all the mastering control of their website so you can fine tune your perfect mix all on your device.
You can control the Loudness of your track, EQ settings and add ID3 Tags and Cover Art directly into your tracks file. Once you’ve finished tuning the track you can put it through the apps mastering software then compare it before and after mastering, all before processing the track or going back and mixing it more.
Alibaba Music have upgraded their music streaming with a new online platform to connect fans with members of the industry called Alibaba Planet.
Alibaba Planet is the new music based social app from Chinese digital giants Alibaba. They say that it will open up an opportunity for fans to connect with artists and vice-versa. It could also be translated to connecting sellers with buyers.
Using the app on your smartphone users will be able to follow their favourite artists and stars to keep up to date with their activity on the app, take part in “fan activities”, buy music merch, and watch live streams of certain performances. The company also has licensing agreements with BMG and Universal Music Group to stream music, however not Warner Music Group or Sony Music.
Alibaba have taken on board music industry executive Song Ke to run as CEO. In a statement he said: “Alibaba Planet amplifies interaction among stars, users and merchants, creating more business opportunities and delivering more entertainment offerings.” He added that they plan “to become the world’s largest Internet-based music company, and to build up the commerce landscape for the global music and entertainment industry”. Ambitious talk in a market filled with behemoths like streamers Spotify and Pandora.
Alibaba Planet has a lot to live up to aiming to make artist interaction possible whilst providing an all-in-one platform for music, video and merchandising. Alibaba plan to launch an English version of the app later this year, though gave no specific date.
Having a good drum plugin is essential to your mix, whether you’re sampling or playing a drum synth it provides the blueprint to your tracks. We don’t all have the convenience of an in-house drummer and the control you have over the sound when using digital drums is unrivalled.
We’ve collected ten of the greatest drum plugins available so you’re never at a loss producing your beats.
If you don’t have a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) to insert plugins into we collected our ten favourite free DAWs here or if you just want to play around with them there’s a great list of VST hosts here.
Drumatic 3 is an analog drum synth that provides a great deal of flexibility thanks to it’s 100% synthesised sounds. There are graphical envelopes for each element of the ‘kit’ and 6 stereo outputs assignable to any of the seven different sounds. The video below doesn’t really explore Drumatic 3’s capabilities but it gives you an idea of the tools within it.
This kit is made up of samples and sounds brilliant. All sounds in the kit have been processed to give the best sound possible. You can adjust the compression levels yourself for a more personal sound and choose from a Groove Library of thousands of rhythms to accompany you. Check out this awesome plugin kit.
“The deepest sampled drum kit in the world” is your introduction to this incredible plugin. It features 127 velocity layers per kit piece and has 2-4 samples for each note velocity. It’s sampled from the excellent 1960s Ludwig Oyster Blue Pearl Drum Kit and has an unholy amount of amazing sounding samples. Unfortunately the kit only works with Reaper software but you can still download and use the almost 2 GB of drum samples in software of your choice.
This fat sounding drum machine emulator is sampled from the notorious MPC 2500 and is perfect for some heavy hip-hop beats. There are 10 kits included, an ADSR envelope to shape your sound and built in reverb to make your drum tracks boom. There are 12 pads each with individual faders and it’s simple interface means no-one gets left behind.
MiniSpillage is a professional quality drum synth capable of high-res 64-bit DSP processing. It features a bass drum, flexible wood drum synthesising timbres to toms, and a 6 oscillator hi-hat generator each with a good level of customisable effects and filters.
This virtual analog drum and percussion synthesiser is capable of a massive range of sound, from old school drum machines to “crazy, mangled glitch sounds”. This plugin is great for loads of styles like Dubstep, ambient, drum & bass, hip-hop and many more.
What would a list of drum VSTs be without an 808 emulator in there somewhere. Tactile Sounds’ 808 is software emulated on the Roland TR-808 so you know it sounds great. There are 15 different drum sounds with tune and decay knobs for most. Their creator claims his version has more parameters and range than their predecessor.
Drum Pro includes 20 drum kits, all of which can be expanded with more sounds and kits from StudioLinked‘s website. It’s got a great electronic sound and it’s kits take samples from a variety of classic drum machines. The customisation with effects and parameters is unfortunately limited but you can tweak a number of parameters globally like attack and decay.
This a sample based drum machine built by Ola Wistedt when a friend told him he missed being able to program drums like he could on classic hardware drum machine. It features a 24 pattern sequencer, each pattern can be a 16/32/64/128 sequence and it supports a massive range of audio files for your samples. It genuinely works as well as a proper drum machine and has unlimited potential with it’s easily navigated sample browser.
MyDrumset features kit recordings to recreate an acoustic kit in your computer. It sounds great as the recordings have been left untampered like many plugins so you have the noise of a raw kit. You can also set it up so each microphone sends separately to 12 different outputs so you can mix it like you would recording a real drum kit. There are 3 presets included recorded on a Ludwig Fab Four kit.
That’s our list of ten of the greatest drum plugins available for free.Hopefully there’s some ammo to fuel a load of new beats for you in the list. Are there any you love that we missed? Let us know down in the comments below.
Google are secretive with their statistics, keeping their revenues under wraps and even their Google Play Music Subscribers behind closed doors but a UBS analyst has predicted Google’s YouTube could earn $27 billion in revenues by 2020.
YouTube may be a multi-billion dollar company but according to stock analysis company Amigo Bulls YouTube made up just a small portion of Google’s revenues in 2015. Whilst YouTube grossed $8.5 billion last year, Google amassed $52.4 billion from websites.
Eric Sheridan, an analyst at UBS financial firm, feels however that YouTube has the best outlook for future growth and will become central to Google’s revenues in the coming years. Sheridan believes that YouTube will grow at a rate of 21% over the next four years, generating $27.4 billion in revenues by 2020.
According to charts by Barclays the time spent watching online videos is growing rapidly year on year, at the expense of traditional platforms like TV.
YouTube has thrived almost since it’s creation 10 years ago, rising every year. With it’s free platform, open to anyone around the world with internet access it draws in millions of people around the world. Whether Sheridan’s forecasts come true will have to be seen but if there’s one thing you can’t deny it’s that YouTube aren’t going anywhere soon.
Today Shazam are launching their new ‘for Brands’ initiative to appear on everything you buy… well not quite everything.
Shazam have made their name, and business, naming songs for people who Shazam them. With it’s massive fingerprinting library Shazam can recognise almost any song you play to their app. In recent years Shazam have been branching beyond their roots with QR scanning and partnerships with companies, movies, artists and others to provide unique marketing experiences.
Shazam are now taking that to the next level with ‘Shazam for Brands‘, an initiative that lets companies partner with Shazam for unique digital experiences. So the same as before except on a bigger scale… Shazam’s unique style of digital marketing and massive platform of millions clearly appeals to many companies as they work with some of the biggest name brands in the world.
Earlier this month Shazam began by partnering with Coca Cola to create a new bottle design that users could visually Shazam the label to record a lip-synced video of the song on the bottle. This isn’t Shazam’s first partnership with Coca Cola either as they “ran the first-ever drinkable commercial in the U.S. during college basketball’s biggest event: the Final Four”.
Shazam have also partnered with loads of other brands like KFC, Coors, Nike and movies like Jurassic World and Ant-Man. This initiative will no doubt put Shazam in contact with loads more companies and brands with their plan assumably to be on every product in the world. To be honest if having a scannable digital advert on everything I buy is as close to dystopian as our future gets we haven’t done too badly.
LNX_Studio gives you access to a full DAW for Mac packed with drum machines, synthesisers, effects and MIDI modules and is totally free.
LNX_Studio is now in version 2 and offers a full and brilliant Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) for Mac users. With it’s powerful tools and expansive capabilities LNX_Studio makes it easy to create and record music. It is also a networked DAW so you can collaborate with others within the program and you don’t even have to be together.
Here’s an overview of some of the great features in LNX_Studio: