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EP13: Audiofusion - Using Wi-Fi to Turn Your Mobile Device into a Wireless Monitoring System

June 15th, 2018

Musicians love their wireless in-ear monitoring systems. It gives them the freedom to move around the stage without worrying about tripping over extra cables or getting tangled while playing. 
But did you ever stop to think why you need to have a separate wireless monitor system when you already have an extremely powerful computer in your other pocket?
The guys at Audiofusion did, and after four years of development and testing, they are on the verge of bringing their technology and first products to market.
Audiofusion is pro-audio software for your laptop that turns your smartphone and tablet into wireless receivers for your in-ear monitors, thus getting rid of one extra bulky pack hanging on your belt. 
And since it’s software-based, it gives each musician individual control over their own mix and takes away the requirement of being at the mercy of your monitor mix and always asking the sound guy to adjust what you hear.
The Audiofusion family is made up of three software products:
  • SoundCaster: The centerpiece of the Audiofusion Wireless Personal Monitoring System, which recognizes each audio channel from any connected digital mixer, audio interface or other audio device. It is meant to run on a Macbook at the main sound board.
  • Performer: This is the in-ear monitoring app for your iOS device. It receives the real-time audio over Wi-Fi and plays it through your ear phones. It also acts as a complete monitor mixer, giving you complete control over the sound in your ears.
  • Director: The Director app works best on an iPad and allows you to assign labels, icons and positions to your band, creating a visual stage plot that works alongside SoundCaster and Performer.
Brandon Leafblad, co-founder of Audiofusion, joins us in this episode to talk about how he and a friend were inspired to pursue the concept of real-time audio over Wi-Fi and share his vision of how he hopes to license Audiofusion technology to other companies to expand the use of real-time audio over Wi-Fi and help transform the live audio industry.

EP12: Wampler Pedals - Achieving World Class Guitar Tones Through Experimentation

June 8th, 2018

If you’re a guitar player, you already know there is an endless array of available guitar pedals on the market today that seems to provide any sound or tone you are looking for. 
But what if there isn’t?  What if you still can’t find that perfect tone that you resonate with? Do you settle for the closest thing? Or do you take matters into your own hands?
Brian Wampler, CEO of Wampler Pedals, decided to take matters into his own hands.  Over a decade ago, he realized he just could not find the tones he was longing for.  So instead of being unhappy with stock tones, he started educating himself on electronics and tweaking and modifying existing pedals in an attempt to achieve the tones he kept hearing in his head.
Eventually, all of the modifying in the world wasn’t able to produce the tones he knew to be true to himself, so he started making brand new pedal designs from scratch that didn’t sound like anything on the market.  As a result, Wampler Pedals was born.
Brian joins us in this episode of Behind the Backline to share his story, from humble beginnings to full fledge production of his original designed boutique pedals, and his thoughts on where his industry is going and how his education background shines a light on what’s wrong with today’s education system for students who need to be properly nurtured and allowed to innovate and explore their creativity from a young age.

EP11: Blipblox - Encouraging the Future of Music Through Creativity and Audio Exploration

June 1st, 2018

These days it seems like there is an early learning process or product for everything, and it keeps targeting children at a younger and younger age. Except for the keyboard and “touch and learn” type educational toys for kids, there never seemed to be anything that truly developed a child’s imagination or nurtured their love of music and audio creation. Until now.
Introducing the Blipblox, a synthesizer and beatbox designed to promote creativity and audio exploration for children as young as 3 years old.  With its professional features and nearly endless ability to create new sounds, it’s a product that grows with you and works for adults as well!
Troy Sheets, founder and inventor, joins us in this episode to talk about what the Blipblox is, who it’s for, why he felt inspired to pursue and create it, and how it might be considered a good “gateway drug” for future musicians and producers.

EP10: SMASHmouse - Giving You the Power to Kick It to Click It!

May 25th, 2018

As technology and music continue to mesh and evolve, musicians sometimes find themselves in new and awkwardly frustrating situations. For example, when attempting to learn to play the guitar, while watching video lessons, and trying to play or record on the computer, it can feel like we’re expected to grow another limb just to be able to manage all of the fancy new ways we need to multi-task.
With SMASHmouse, there’s no need for a third arm. Just add your feet! Robb Dillon, inventor of SMASHmouse, saw the need for a better solution to these simple yet familiar challenges. Now you can use your foot to control software and other applications on digital devices, allowing you to keep on playing without the headaches!
Robb joins us in this episode to share his story behind SMASHmouse, how it can help musicians now, and how the technology and ideas behind SMASHmouse can easily be adapted in the future for other applications, including gaming and assistive technology for those with special needs when controlling digital devices.

EP9: Frettable - Combining Artificial Intelligence with Songwriting

May 18th, 2018

Writing a song entirely by ear on your guitar and having a robot turn it into sheet music for you: sounds a bit like science fiction right?
Now with Frettable, the future is here! Frettable is a new app for your smart phone or tablet that allows you to record your music and get it automatically analyzed and transformed into sheet music.  Behind the app is a powerful, advanced AI engine that will immediately write the sheet music for you to save and print. It’s truly polyphonic, handling both notes and chords. Tabs are also generated for guitar and other stringed instruments.
Founder, guitarist, and music AI expert Greg Burlet joins us in this episode to share his story about how he created Frettable, why he was inspired to develop it, and how it is making an impact on the songwriting industry.
Currently, Frettable supports electric guitar, vocals, trumpet, trombone, tuba, french horn, saxophone, clarinet, flute, oboe, recorder, english horn and bassoon.  However, more instruments will be supported soon.

EP8: The Drum Wallet - Expanding Your Drum Sounds with the Flick of a Stick

May 11th, 2018

Every drummer in the world has their own unique way of setting up their drums, tuning their heads, and voicing their opinions on what sounds best and why. From those who love to over-muffle their kits to the purists who prefer getting a drum to sound the best it can without adding rings, gels or other unnecessary sound-altering products, the variations and range of sounds is almost endless.
Luckily, any drummer out there doesn’t have to settle for just one sound during a whole set or a whole song any longer. Enter the Drum Wallet and the Pocket Watch!
For generations drummers have attempted to alter their drum’s sound before muffling product were even available, using items like their wallet, pocket watch, and now even cellphones to give their sound a quick fix.  The Drum Wallet and the Pocket Watch are simple, yet powerful products that hang from your drum and give you the option to flick it onto to the drum or flip if off to change the sound whenever it feels right.

EP7: Signal Flow - Making Stage Plotting & Setup More Efficient

May 4th, 2018

Are you an audio engineer who’s part of a team that’s responsible for setting up stages night after night, weekend after weekend?  Do you feel like everyone on the team is always repeating themselves and having trouble trying to stay on the same page with how the stage is laid out and what device is plugged into which channel?  Where does the audio madness end?!
I have good news for you: Denver, Colorado-based superheroes Joey and Mike are here to rescue you!
While fighting this very evil, fellow audio engineer Joey came to the realization that there had to be a better way to keep things organized and better communicated when working either solo, with an audio team or with bands in general. Reaching out to his freelance-developer cousin Mike, they put their heads together to develop Signal Flow, a cloud-based app for iPhone and Android that allows audio teams to plan stage plots, document device input and output channels, and provide a way to notify everyone on the team when a setting or configuration changes so everyone has the latest updates.
If you’re an audio engineer looking for an end to the evil plots (pun intended), you’ll want to check out Signal Flow!

EP6: Fano Guitars - Crafting the Ultimate Boutique Guitar at the Highest Standards

April 27th, 2018

After working for 30 years at one of the biggest names in guitars, it can be hard to accept and adapt to a change like retirement. So what's the alternative to that?  Did you say start a new business, acquire an existing line of popular guitars, and keep the passion going? That’s exactly what we were going to say!
Jack Schwarz joins us this week to tell us about his lifelong love of guitars (or as he puts it, his life’s addiction), his 30-year tenure with Fender Musical Instruments Corp., and how he was given the opportunity to start Desert Son Musical Instruments in late 2016.
Desert Son Musical Instruments is the (new) parent company of Fano Guitars (and Aero3 Guitars). What makes a Fano Guitar different is that every instrument they make is hand-built by a single builder from start to finish. There is no factory or assembly line. Their focus is on the fine details of each guitar for each player who knows what they want: quality, reliability, style and performance.

EP5: DrumLite - Giving the Drummer Some With LED Lighting

April 20th, 2018

Drum solos and stick twirling are so last year! Drummers need to continuously find new ways to stand out, demonstrate their worth, and get their share of the love from fans. So what’s a poor drummer to do?
Light ‘em up! (without starting on fire!)
Jeff Sevaldson, co-founder of DrumLite, joins us in this episode to tell the story of how DrumLite started in their college dorm room (move over Facebook!), why everyone from local drummers to national acts love their products, and what they’ve learned and conquered over the years through continuous development and manufacturing trial and error that has made DrumLite a world class brand among percussionists.

EP4: Welch Tuning Systems - Simplifying the Way We Tune Our Drums

April 13th, 2018

What do you get when a drummer who’s had enough of individually tuning up to 20 points on a drum comes to his senses and realizes there’s got to be an easier way? You get Welch Tuning Systems!
Welch Tuning Systems CEO Samuel Welch joins us in this episode to share his story of how his frustration when tuning his drums came to an end with the creation of his single-point tuning system.  Using a bass guitar tuning peg, he and his team eventually figured out how to replace the multiple tuning pegs on a drums with a single wire system to ensure both heads on a drum were tightened exactly the same, making it easier for drummers to find their sweet spot and adjust a drum’s tuning in mid-performance.
While it isn’t publicly available quite yet, their presence at NAMM this year proved to them that there is a ton of potential, demand and excitement for what they are doing. 

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