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1998 Grammy Awards

Opcode Vision

A community of ameteur and professional musicians, recording personnel, musical instrument and equipment manufacturers and record company A&R representatives.

   Steve's Corner   
Getting Your Music


Thursday, October 29, 1998

Portable MP3 Player Gets Court's Approval
ZDNet has the story: "Music Industry Can't Stop Online Fans Going To Rio" The "Rio" is a walkman-like music player that lets you play music downloaded from the internet in the form of MP3 files. Is this good or bad for musicians? Will more small-time musicians get to have their music heard, or will more of the big acts get ripped off because of computer music bootlegging?

Tuesday, October 27, 1998

Fretpet 2.0 - Guitar Oriented 4-track Sequencer
[Discovered on Ric Ford's MacInTouch website] FretPet 2.0 is a guitar-oriented 4-track music sequencer that features a unique interface that makes writing music easier. FretPet features a variety of palettes that showcase different aspects of your chords. Runs on Mac OS. (including the new OS 8.5)
Features (paraphrased from the Fretpet webpage:

  • Scale Palette: Add notes and triads to your chords.
  • Guitar Palette: Edit chords right on the guitar neck.
  • Piano Palette: Edit your chords on the ivory keys.
  • Circle Palette: Extend and color your chords.
  • click-and-pick Sequencer: Compose entirely with finger-picking patterns.
  • Utilize QuickTime Musical Instruments
  • Export your compositions as QuickTime Movies and use them in other sequencers like Cubase VST and Deck II
  • Chord Analysis reveals more about your chords.
  • Dynamic Composition lets you make coherent changes to a piece while it plays. Use it to compose and perform live at the same time.
Find out more on the Fretpet 2.0 web page.

Monday, October 19, 1998

Prince and the Revolution: Together Again
er uh, and the Revolution

Actually, it seems they are revamping some previously unreleased material that they are currently working on... though not together. According to The Artist's website , "In reference 2 the Revolutionary banter online recently, one should note that the group needn't b 2gether 2 release an album... their contribution 2 the project is such that many songs written in whole by Prince (the name he went by at the time) were turned over 2 Wendy and Lisa (the name they went by at the time), who then added parts sometimes arranged by them but most times by Prince... can and will finish the album Roadhouse Garden (working title) alone unless the tide turns otherwise..."

How To Get Your Music Online
In the first installment of a 3-part series, Steve Swart explains how to get your music online.

Friday, October 9, 1998

Bungie Games Features Interview With Sound Creators "Total Audio"
Total Audio, the music and sound producer's behind such popular computer games as Myth: The Fallen Lords and Riven, as well as numerous commercial projects (including the famous Flintstones Vitamins commercial, "...ten million strong... and growing!" are featured in an interview on the Bungie website. Currently they are working on the sound for the upcoming Bungie title, "Myth II: Soulblighter".

Although often derided by musicians, the commercial music industry can offer musicians and producers the opportunity for unique creative outlets, such as computer and video game soundtracks. Some game companies go so far as to commission custom orchestral scores (Total Annihilation), as well as the sound effects and action-based breaks for their games.

Monday, October 5, 1998

Opcode Introduces Vision DSP
Opcode has released Vision DSP, a MIDI and audio recording and sequencing package with real-time effects that is 100% compatible with Steinberg's VST plug-in architecture. Only available for the Macintosh, it supports most audio cards including Korg's 1212I/O, Lucid's PCI 24, the Sonorus STUDI/O, Digidesign's Audiomedia III and numerous others. A wide variety of high-quality effects created specifically for Vision DSP are bundled with the program, including Echo, Cycle, Align, Chorus, Rezn8, Plate, Comp, Squash, Panner, and Ring Modulator. Opcode has posted a free demo available for download.

Apple's New iMac gets MIDI
Opcode has announced their industry-standard Open Music System (OMS) software protocol will support MIDI communications over the USB bus on Apple's new iMac computer. Also available is Opcode's DATport, a USB-compatible S/PDIF interface which allows two channels of digital audio to be transferred over USB at resolutions as high as 24-bit.

Friday, October 2, 1998

Event Electronics Introduces
Long-Awaited Mac Support For "Layla"
ProTools Comes To Windows NT

Event Electronics has finally released version 1.0 of their Mac drivers for their Layla digital audio recording card. If you will recall, Layla is the especially cool $800-$1,000 rack-mount break-away box featuring 8 1/4" balanced inputs, 10 balanced 1/4" outputs, 20-bit audio encoding, MIDI in/out/thru, onboard DSP, and dozens of other awesome features. (Thanks to MacinTouch for the news). In other news from the same source, Digidesign has announced a Windows NT version (in addition to the Macintosh version) of ProTools 24, the industry standard in digital audio recording.

ASCAP Announces New Member Card Benefit Options
The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) has announced agreements with Europadisk, Valle Music Reproduction and TSR Wireless providing special discounts of between 10% and 15% for the services each company offers (CD, cassette and vinyl pressing, music paper and supplies and paging, two-way radio and cell phone service.)

Friday, September 25, 1998

Steinberg Provides Major Upgrade for
Award-Winning Multi-track Recording Software

Steinberg's Cubase VST 4.0 for the Mac has finally been released! Cubase VST 4.0 (The VST stands for Virtual Studio Technology) adds new features and even further simplifies MIDI and Audio recording integration. Now, with the basic VST you can get up to 64 tracks (depending on computer processor and hardware speed) of MIDI and recorded audio, real-time MIDI editing, 4 equalisers per channel, 4 insert effects per channel, 8 aux sends, 8 global effects, full automation, audio hardware expandability (compatible with Digidesign's Audiomedia II and III boards, as well as many others), and notation editing and layout. Cubase VST Score adds professional notation, editing, layout and printing, and the full-fledged golden monster version, Cubase VST24 adds the ability to record 96 channels of audio and MIDI, support for 24-bit/96kHz operation, more hardware support in addition the added features of Cubase VST Score.

Carvin Introduces New Bass, Amps and Mixers At Summer
According to Carvin the RC-210-18 Red-Eye Combo Bass Amp "packs a whopping 600 watts into a small combo that can go anywhere. This combo features the R600 series II head in a special cabinet that is designed to sit upright or tilt back for better stage monitoring and access to the front panel. The two 10"" drivers along with the compression ""Red Eye"" horn give you tight punchy bass at any volume. For added bass that will punch through the floor the RL118 extention cabinet is offered with this set up. Run the R600 head in Bi Amp mode and push all your lower frequencies into the 18"" woofer that features our new 4"" voice coil the pushes the power rating of this enclosure up to a full 800 watts!" Carvin also introduced a "best of show" award winning bass at NAMM, as well as a new 1600 watt subwoofer and a 4-out mixer.

Friday, September 18, 1998

Musicians Request Meeting With Gore
According to CMJ Music News, Pearl Jam, Peter Buck (REM) and Chris Cornell (formerly of Soundgarden) are seeking an audience with Vice President Al Gore to discuss using their influence as pop icons to save our national forests, especially the unspoiled wilderness of the Pacific Northwest.

Discuss musician activism in our forum. - or,
head on over to Steve Swart's column and read
"Ted Nugent Wants YOU!
To Consider Radical Corrective Brain Surgery!"

Thursday, September 10, 1998

Real Audio Announces CD Streamer
Real Audio's CD Streamer converts your audio CDs into CD-quality RealAudio for personal playback on your PC. Created by SuperPlanet, CD Streamer lets you store music CDs in highly compressed CD-quality RealAudio on your hard drive. It automatically retrieves the album title and song names from the Internet, and allows you to create customized playlists for playback via CD Streamer. CD Streamer won ZDNet Editors' Pick with a 5-star rating. For a limited time the Real Audio Store is offering CD Streamer for only $19.95 (reg. $34.95) with a full 30-day money back guarantee.

If any of you try this software, please let us know what you think of it, and how it compares with mp-3 players and of course CD sound.

BMI Musicbot 2.0 Tracks Music Use on the Web
BMI recently announced version 2.0 of their new advanced web search technology, Musicbot which will debut this fall. MusicBot™ 2.0 includes advanced heuristics and artificial intelligence to help it identify music on the web. The new release includes an automated assessment of multimedia files found on the Internet as well as an index linking song titles found on the web with the names of the works' songwriters and music publishers. The release also gathers more data on each file located, enabling users to easily assess how content is being used. In a nutshell, BMI is helping musicians and recording artists get paid for the use of their work on the internet. Read more about it.

Tuesday, September 8, 1998

Review and Samples from Rattlemouth's
"Fist Full of Iffy" Posted

It's been a long time, but we've finally posted another band's creation on Musicians Online.

Rattlemouth is a three-piece jazz-fusion combo (perhaps progressive rock would be a more apt label), that manages to catch the listener's ear in a manner in which most jazz-fusion tends to fail. Consisting of Danny Finney on sax and sometimes vocals, Tom Brickman on Bass and Robbie Kinter on drums, Rattlemouth creates rhythmic riff-based songs and instrumental pieces that generally start off introducing a simple theme that builds in complexity, culminating in sometimes sublime improvisational runs. Rattlemouth is currently on Cuneiform Records and you can hear some samples of their work and read our review here.

Roland Introduces VG-8 Guitar Processor
The Roland VG-8 is a breakthrough guitar processor that uses advanced modeling technology to emulate the most popular guitars and amplifiers in music history, as well as produce some unique new sounds of its own. This amazing system has now been updated to include new acoustic and hollow-body models, pickup variations, amp variations, and more.

Thursday, September 3, 1998

Opcode's Vision DSP 4.1 Hits Stores
Opcode Systems just released Vision DSP 4.1 this week. Some of the new features include:

  • Hosts on-board real-time Steinberg VST (TM) compatible effects
  • Supports Steinberg ASIO (TM) compatible sound cards including Korg 1212 I/O, Sonorus STUDI/O, Lucid PCI 24, Digidesign Audiomedia III/Project II, with support for Lexicon, Alesis and Event cards coming soon
  • Supports Apple Sound Manager for on-board PowerMac audio – no extra hardware necessary
  • Transparent 4-band EQ with parametric, hi/low pass, hi/low shelving settings and graphic display of EQ curves
  • Easy-to-use MIDI Arpeggiator locks to grooves and sequence tempo for brilliant techno effects
  • Paint drum grooves effortlessly in the new Pulse Edit window
  • OMS Timing for superior synchronization of audio and MIDI tracks
  • Includes dozens of new features from Studio Vision Pro
  • Eleven free VST plug-ins includeing echo, cycle, align, chorus, flange, rezn8, plate, compressor, squash, pan, ring modulator

Upgrades from previous versions are $99.95. Contact Opcode at 1-800-557-2633.

Tuesday, September 1, 1998

What's the story with Musicians Online?
     Greetings Musicians Online readers and visitors! First, let me thank you all for your submissions and interest in this site. Second, let me apologize for the lack of attention paid to this site over the past two months. I have been recovering from a smashed collarbone thanks to a violent car accident. (Personal thanks to the kind woman who ignored the red light and hit me!)
     So what are the plans now? Well, I'm up and computing now (if not yet allowed to drive). I intend to sort through the last two months e-mail, update the databases of manufacturers, etc., and to post news updates TWICE a week: on Monday night/Tuesday mornings and on Wednesday night/Thursday mornings. Other articles will be announced as they are completed. Again, thanks for sticking by Musicians Online.

"If you want to give God a laugh, tell him your plans"
                  - Mike Scott, the Waterboys

Reading Festival Rocks England Last Weekend
Britain's Reading Festival rocked the old empire last weekend, Aug 28-30. Some of the outstanding performers included Jimmy Page & Robert Plant, the Beastie Boys and Garbage. See what people who were there had to say about the festival.

Friday, July 31, 1998

R&B/Hip-hop Acts Wanted
SoulPower Records/Virgin is currently looking for R&B/Hip-hop Acts. If interested, contact:
Attn: Sonya P.
SoulPower/Virgin Records
1717 Highland Ave,
Suite 611
Hollywood, CA 90028

Wednesday, June 17, 1998

Wide Open Ears: LARGO from ex-Hooters, ex-Band, Others
LARGO is a new and ambitious musical project conceived and produced by long-time friends Rick Chertoff and Rob Hyman. Chertoff, Grammy-nominated producer (Cyndi Lauper, Joan Osborne) and Hyman, co-founder of Philadelphia rock band The Hooters, and Grammy nominated song-writer (Cyndi Lauper's "Time After Time") discovered a mutual love and interest in Czech composer Anton'n Dvorák's Symphony "From The New World." Its well-known "Largo" theme inspired and fueled their resulting musical journey, an exploration of Dvorák's own journey from the Old World to the New.

Performers on the album include Eric Brazillian, Rob Hyman, Fran Smith and David Uosikke of the Hooters, Levon Helm and Garth Hudson of The Band, Taj Mahal, Cyndi Lauper, Joan Osborne, David Forman, the Chieftans and others. Together they create a beautiful album hybridizing the earthy rock of Woodstock with the Old World feel of Dvorak's compositions. It should be noted that while a lot of Dvorak's passages are used there is a great deal of original writing here. Highlights on the album include "Disorient Express", "Gimme A Stone" and "Freedom Ride".

Please send us your suggestions, submissions, articles, contact info, tales from the road, news items and everything else you think we might want to know about!

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Musicians Online is an online community of musicians, recording professionals, musical instrument and equipment manufacturers and record company A&R representatives. Here artists can showcase their work and develop their talents, and recording industry professionals can find the best of new independently created music, hand-picked by our editors. Furthermore, manufacturers of musical equipment get a direct line to the people who are looking for their products at Musicians Online.