MusicLab Garage Drummer, turn Guitar Hero/Rock Band controller into MIDI controller

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MusicLab Garage Drummer

MusicLab has released Garage Drummer, a free plug-in for using a Guitar Hero or Rock Band controller as a MIDI controller.

We are proud to present Garage Drummer – free tool letting you use Guitar Hero or Rock Band video games drum controller as a MIDI controller within your favourite DAW.

Garage Drummer consists of 2 components:

  • Virtual Midi driver providing Game Controller 1, Game Controller 2, .. MIDI inputs.
  • Garage Drummer VSTi to select connected game controller as MIDI input, create/load note maps for drum pads, as well as save current settings within your songs.

Garage Drummer is available to download as a freeware plug-in for PC and Mac (VST/AU).

More information: MusicLab / Garage Drummer

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Mike Norrish Armchair Guitarist, MIDI plug-in for Rock Band & Guitar Hero controllers

Mike Norrish Armchair Guitarist

Mike Norrish has released version 1.5.0.0 of Armchair Guitarist, a VST plug-in for providing MIDI input from one of the numerous console guitar controllers currently on the market.

It is a pure-MIDI plugin- MIDI messages, not audio data is sent to the host- in essence, the plugin allows the user to use a guitar controller the way they would a standard MIDI keyboard.

This release basically consists of a few little improvements and bugfixes, but there is enough difference there to warrant the 1.5 release. The Fret Board is now five frets wider, there are now parameters for fine tuning the Whammy Bar, and there is a proper menu for selecting controller types. The major new fix is that Guitar Hero World Tour and Guitar Hero 5 controllers for the Playstation 3 are now fully functional, after a few hiccups.

Changes in Armchair Guitarist v1.5.0.0

  • Whammy Bar can only bend notes down (Fixed)
  • Playstation 3 Button Mappings Incorrect (Fixed)
  • Add ability to specify range of Whammy Bar input (Implemented)
  • Changing to the previous fret at fret zero goes to incorrect fret (Fixed)
  • Need a GUI Item for changing programs (Implemented)
  • Resize GUI to fit Program Selector (Implemented)
  • Extend Fretboard (Implemented)

Armchair Guitarist is available to download as a freeware VST plug-in for Windows PC.

More information: Armchair Guitarist

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Short links for October 28th, 2009

Some interesting things I found recently:

# Kasabian Football Hero – DIY Larger-Than-Life, Soccer Ball-Controlled Guitar Hero Game.


Using pressure pads with Arduino boards wired up to Guitar Hero's Frets on Fire

Football Hero is played by a team of insanely gifted young freestyle footballers, all kitted out in Umbro Football gear. This game is programmed with the Kasabian track Underdog. The freestyle footballers are: Paul Wood, Paul Klein, Darryl Stewart, Tom Pett, Lewis Foster & Harry Adcroft – you may have already seen "Woody" and "Kleiny" displaying their skills during 2009's Britain's Got Talent series…

# Spooky Tesla Spirit Radio

The Spooky Tesla Spirit Radio is a crystal radio circuit in a jam-jar. It makes fun spooky sounds by responding to input from several types of electromagnetic sources. This non-powered radio plugs right into the computer sound-in jack, and makes use of audio software for real time sound effects.

IDMf007 - Continuum

# IDMf007 – Continuum

Martin Herron wrote in to let us know about Continuum, a new release on the IDMf netlabel.

Continuum, the newest installment in the IDMf library, is an electronic music album to behold. Beginning with the hard-hitters and slowing down to a softer touch, this compilation showcases the diversity of genres displayed on the IDMf netlabel, including breakcore, dubstep, house, breaks, ambient, and IDM.

The tracks are arranged as they would be in a double CD package: Side A includes eight tracks jam-packed with energy that smoothly segue into a lighter mix of glorious beats on Side B. IDMf is proud to introduce a few new artists along with some of “golden oldies” who have appeared on previous compilations, bringing you the most well-rounded and genre-stomping release from IDMf yet!

The album is free to download from the IDMf website (320kbps mp3).

# Raindrop Melody Maker

Lovely music game by Lullatone:

We developed a new interactive game, Raindrop Melody Maker, with our friends Secondary School.

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Short links for June 15th, 2009

Some interesting things I found recently:

Lennon Luks MIDI Controller/Sequencer

# MIDI Controller/Sequencer

Lennon Luks writes:

While I was earning my BS at Western Carolina University, one of the requirements was a Senior Design Project. For this project, I designed and constructed a MIDI controller/sequencer. I chose this as a project because I am a musician and I am very much interested in electronic music and electronic musical instruments/controllers. This project was ideal for me, as it allowed me to combine my passions for engineering and music.

# More samples — the hallway session samples

Chaircrusher has posted another batch of samples. Sounds include a screwdriver, steel thermos, spraypaint can, rubbermaid shelves, sheetrock wall, stair rail, wooden legs that used to hold up kitchen island, and some sniffing.

RocketScientist Marimba

# Build Your Own Marimba!

RocketScientist @ Instructables:

I am a mallet percussionist who loves the marimba. About four years ago I had a problem. Though I loved percussion, I had no way of practicing at home. There were cheap options. I could have bought a bell kit. But I hate the sounds they make. I wanted a very large five octave marimba but didn't have the money to simply purchase one (7000+ dollars). So I decided against all common sense I would build one.

# TrackTeam Audio Monomulator – Monomulator for APC40 & pK – Monome emulator for the Akai APC40 and Korg PadKONTROL. Free download, includes Max/MSP source files.

# Warp20

Warp commemorates its 20th anniversary with a deluxe special-edition of music and art (Box Set).

Warp20 BoxSet

The package features new songs, older previously unreleased material from Warp artists, tracks selected as some of his personal favorites by co-founder Steve Beckett and the top ten pieces voted for by Warp fans on Warp20.net. It also includes a beautifully produced book showcasing the label’s rich design history, along with an exclusive hour-long mix and a locked-groove vinyl set.

# OpenChord.org V1 – Build a Real Guitar Guitar Hero/Rock Band Controller

An Instructable for using a real guitar as your Guitar Hero controller.

We all love Guitar Hero and Rock Band. We also know that we'll never learn how to actually play guitar playing these games. But what if we could at least build a Guitar Hero controller that let us use a real guitar? That's what we here at OpenChord.org are trying to do.

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Short links for March 5th, 2009

Some interesting things I found recently:

Thru-You

# THRU YOU | Kutiman mixes YouTube

If there's one music video you are going to watch this year it should be one of Kutiman's. A-W-E-S-O-M-E!

This guy collected tons of clips from YouTube and remixed them into brand new songs. Mad skills.

Note: everybody and their mother is now trying to watch Kutiman’s amazing work, so if the site is offline you should really check back later!

# Reaktor Tutorials – Free Reaktor tutorials by Mats Claesson. From the basics of building a simple synth to more advanced topics like Granulation modules.

Benjamin Heckendorn Guitar Hero 4 hack

# Air pressure kick pedal for Guitar Hero 4

Benjamin J Heckendorn built an alternative to the GH4 drum kit’s kick pedal for a person who uses a wheelchair:

Basically this turns the kick pedal into an air pressure diaphragm. You can now “kick” the bass drums by blowing into a tube.

# In search of the click track

Paul Lamere uses the Echo Nest API to find out who is using a click track:

I’ve always been curious about which drummers use a click track and which don’t, so I thought it might be fun to try to build a click track detector using the Echo Nest remix SDK ( remix is a Python library that allows you to analyze and manipulate music). In my first attempt, I used remix to analyze a track and then I just printed out the duration of each beat in a song and used gnuplot to plot the data. The results weren’t so good – the plot was rather noisy. It turns out there’s quite a bit of variation from beat to beat. In my second attempt I averaged the beat durations over a short window, and the resulting plot was quite good.

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