Prime Loops has released Smooth Keys, a sample library featuring electric piano loops.
Spanning the full range of rhodes, wurlitzers and clavichords, this pack brings hybrid electro-mechanical warmth to your studio and ensures the maximum organic power for your digital compositions.
Whether you want to beef up your productions with some tasty soul flavours inspired by the likes of Herbie Hancock or Stevie Wonder or if you just want to enhance your compositions with some contemporary pop coolness (think John Legend, John Mayer or James Morrison), Prime Loops’ “Smooth Keys” delivers you all the right ingredients to keep it real!
Smooth Keys features
Inspired collection of over 140 E-Piano Loops, Licks, Patterns & Progressions between 64 and 120Bpm, suitable for R&B, Pop, Hip Hop and many other genres.
100% royalty-free and pre-formatted for Acid WAV and Apple Loops (24bit).
Smooth Keys is currently available to purchase as a download for £8.98 GBP (regular price £17.95 GBP).
Sampletekk has announced a Winter Sale, offering 50% discount on its entire collection of sample libraries for a limited time.
Merry Christmas, a bit in advance, from a VERY snowy and VERY cold Sweden!
Between December 22 and January 21 we are having our annual Winter Sale where you get a 50% discount on everything in the store. So check out the pianos, wurlitzers, Rhodes, recorders, brass and other goodies at Sampletekk.
Native Instruments has recently released George Duke Soul Treasures, a Kontakt Player powered virtual instrument featuring sounds by the legendary George Duke.
GEORGE DUKE SOUL TREASURES is a treasure trove for producers looking for instant soul for their tracks.
Exclusively recorded for Native Instruments by American soul and jazz legend George Duke, over 500 soul-drenched keyboard loops are ready to go, and without the need to dig for samples through crates of dusty vinyl.
Even if you don’t know George Duke there’s a good chance you have heard some of his work. Check this lovely interview with George below.
Made it through the video? You probably already went on over to the NI Online Shop to buy this library, right? Hello?
George sums up this library pretty well when he explains about the project:
“I was trying to figure out exactly what to play and eventually I just said you know what? I’m just gonna play, because you never know what these guys may wanna use, and so I just let my mind just go, and I mean I played for hours in here. Just playing, okay keep the tape rolling, just rolling just playing… and whatever came out came out.”
And that’s exactly what Soul Treasures provides. Tons of authentic soulful sounds that are just dying to get chopped up and manipulated to fit your own productions. No crate diggin’ required.
Soul Treasures offers loops in four categories: Electric Piano (Rhodes), Grand Piano (acoustic), Wurlitzer and Clavinet. The phrases were recorded using vintage equipment, with both “clean” and “tubes and tapes” signal routing. The tubes and tapes versions were done with lots of analog outboard gear to get that authentic warm vibe. Check the diagrams for details.
The library comes with an advanced Kontakt instrument interface, allowing instant access to various tools to re-arrange phrases and extensively tweak these sliced and tempo-synced loops.
Soul Treasures performance view in Kontakt
In the “Waveform Display” you will notice four buttons in the top middle: tune, volume, attack, and stretch. To change values for these you simply click and drag in the appropriate slices. Very intuitive. Under each slice is a button for reversing the sample and you can drag MIDI sequences to your DAW directly from the waveform display. A handy audio preview button is located in the top left of the display.
Below the waveform display are two page buttons. The Sound page includes controls for:
Signal chain selection, clean or tubes & tape.
Time strech, which activates Kontakt’s Time Machine – syncing loops to the tempo of Kontakt or the host application.
Filter section with 8 filter types.
Echo & Room section with various reverb (impulse response) and delay effects.
The Trigger page is where you control the way the instrument behaves when triggering the slices and effects with your controller, or via the keyboard in the Kontakt interface.
Keyboard sections for FX Chain, Tuning, and Tigger. A white dot indicates an active preset/tuning/slice, and dropdown menus are available for selecting different chains and root tuning.
Latch section with toggles for the fx chain and tuning so that the setting will stay active after releasing the key.
Trigger modes include Loop, One-Shot, and Choke (when a new slice is played it mutes the previous sound).
All these controls make for a pretty flexible instrument, though there are some downsides. Using time stretching on the loops inside the Kontakt has its limits (things sound quite warbly once you move away too far from the original bpm a phrase was recorded in), and you can’t set slices manually.
This can be a minor or major issue depending on how you want to use these sounds. However, Native Instruments provides an additional full set of 24bit wav files for use in other applications. Brilliant!
So what do I think?
Product: Native Instruments George Duke Soul Treasures Format: Kontakt/Kontakt Player NKI’s + 24bit/44kHz samples Price: 99 EUR / $119 USD Like: authentic sound, intuitive and versatile interface, wav files included Don’t like: no manual slicing, timestretching limitations Verdict: 9/10
This is definitely one of my favorite Kontakt instruments. Soul Treasures delivers some outstanding original soulful & funky samples. In combination with Kontakt it becomes a proper instrument with various ways to manipulate the sounds on the fly.
The range of sounds and melodies is more versatile than you might expect. I love hearing subtle nuances in the phrases and I can just imagine George as he was recording these sounds, for hours and hours. It feels and sounds like a labor of love.
In short, I think Soul Treasures is a true gem. When you think of it, it’s really amazing that you can actually buy a set of performances by this legendary musician. The samples are truly inspiring and I reckon the sounds of Soul Treasures will be used in countless modern day productions.
GSi has released version 2.2 of MrTramp, a free electric piano instrument for Windows and Mac.
When updating from 2.0 to 2.1, besides fixing a few bugs, I also changed the attack of the notes of the virtual Wurlitzer piano, but many users asked to restore the old attack, so this version 2.2 is basically identical to version 2.0 sound-wise but with the bug fixes of version 2.1.
MrTramp2 is available as a freeware instrument plug-in for PC and Mac (VST/AU).
Native Instruments has released Scarbee Vintage Keys, a collection of 4 electric pianos for Kontakt (Player) 4.
SCARBEE VINTAGE KEYS contains four classic sampled keyboards from the 60s and 70s: The legendary MARK I, A-200, CLAVINET and PIANET models. This bundle opens up a treasure chest of authentic, soulful sounds.
Scarbee Vintage Keys
SCARBEE A-200 — This KONTAKT Instrument delivers an unrivalled reproduction of one of the most sought-after electric pianos. The character of the SCARBEE A-200 ranges from soft and sweet to a more biting, overdriven sound when played harder. The distinctive sound of the original A-200 was much loved by pop and rock bands in the 1960s and 70s and has recently found favor with a whole new wave of pop, indie and jazz and electronic artists. The SCARBEE A-200 was derived from Scarbee’s legendary “Edgy Electric Piano”.
SCARBEE MARK I — At last, the legendary electric piano of the 1970s has been sampled to perfection in all of its analog brilliance. The classic sound provided by the SCARBEE MARK I ranges from warm and mellow to bright and ‘barking’ and can also produce chiming bell-like tones. While it is of course the perfect choice for jazz, funk, fusion and R&B, this KONTAKT instrument is also versatile enough for any production where authentic electric piano sound is essential. The SCARBEE MARK I was derived from Scarbee’s legendary “Classic Electric Piano”.
SCARBEE CLAVINET/PIANET — The SCARBEE CLAVINET is a meticulously sampled and immanently playable Hohner Clavinet. This highly distinctive electrophonic keyboard has been used extensively on numerous classic funk, soul, reggae, disco and rock tracks since the late 60s. The PIANET – a perfectly captured Hohner Model N Pianet – is a classic electro-mechanical piano with a vibraphone-like tone due to its “sticky hammers”. The SCARBEE CLAVINET/PIANET was derived from Scarbee’s legendary “Funky Electric Piano” and “Sticky Electric Piano”.
Scarbee Vintage Keys is available to purchase for 149 EUR. The instruments are also available separately for 69 EUR each.
Loopmasters has released The Producers Collection, a collection of 6 Multi-Sampled Instruments in Kontakt 3 and Ableton Live formats.
Producer Bundle is a one-stop resource for Puremagnetik’s sophisticated collection of acoustic and electric instruments.
The Producers Collection features
Purple Kit – Purple Kit was hand-built to specifications designed by Puremagnetik emphasizing funk and hip hop drum sounds. Using the finest quality Keller® Maple drum shells, Purple Kit was constructed to be a unique drumset unlike any other currently available.
PM Mark One – Fender Rhodes™ electronic piano. This Micropak includes a 73 key multisampled Rhodes and over 60 audio loops played by professional jazz, funk and R&B keyboardists.
Technosphere – A sound design toolbox of over 100 soundscapes, transition effects and ambiances. Searching for the sound of lizards thinking or Martian zenox explosions? Look no further!
Guitar Rack Volume 1 – Guitar Rack is a unique soundset of guitar based instruments, riffs and amplifier effects as recorded from a Stratocaster. Included in this release are also plenty of ready-to-go Ableton Live Clips complete with effects and Macro programming. With over 20 new amp and effects modules to choose from, users can customize their guitar tone extensively. Guitar Rack for Kontakt includes a huge assortment of looped .nki files and chord menus. The Kontakt version also includes a custom KSP user interface panel for tweaking the most common parameters like tube drive and tone.
Guitar Rack Volume 2 – Acoustic guitar instruments and loops. Puremagnetik has taken the Guitar Rack series to the next level! Guitar Rack Volume 2 – Acoustic Edition contains an assortment of immaculately captured acoustic guitar chord menus, articulations and looped phrases. Customized for Ableton Live 7/8 and Kontakt 3 Guitar Rack Volume 2 is immediately playable out of the box. Both Ableton Live and Kontakt versions contain extensively programmed integrated effects and dynamic controls for easy editing and tone sculpting.
PM-200 – Wurlitzer electronic piano multisample instrument. The Ableton Live Pack version includes the complete PM-200 multisampled instrument, fully Macro mapped with modulations and multiple effect options. The included loop library is automatically imported into Ableton’s library as Live Clips for easy access and file management. The Kontakt version of PM-200 includes a customized skin and KSP scripting for easy tweaking. Both full and “light” versions of the PM-200 are included. Special .nki format audio loops can seamlessly be loaded up in Kontakt for instant session tempo sync – no need to timestretch or compress.
The Producer Bundle is 2GB in size and is available in Ableton Live 7/8 and Kontakt 3 formats, priced at £39.95 GBP.