Monday, June 30, 2008

More Free Samples from Goldbaby

Sample developers Goldbaby have made available a free set of 38 synth FX sounds created using the Realistic MG-1 (a synth made by Moog that was sold at Radio Shack back in the 80's) being processed through an array of Audio Damage's critically acclaimed plug-ins.


Sunday, June 29, 2008

Free Electric Bass Samples For Kontakt

Pettinhouse, makers of the DirectBass sample collection for Native Instruments Kontakt, have made a special, free version available for people to give some of their sounds a try. They do accept donations, so if you download the free version and get a lot of use out of it, throw them a few bucks!


Elka Synthex Demo

Don't know why, but I've always wanted one of these...

Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Lego Harpsicord

Built by Henry Lim, everything except the strings is made from Legos. Predictably, it doesn't sound that great, but the sheer achievement of building it at all is pretty amazing. Follow the link for more info and sound samples.

Friday, June 27, 2008

My new baby

I've always wanted a Pro One, but had been putting it off until I saw this baby. Yes, it's green. I've nicknamed it 'The Hulk', although my friend Steve suggested 'The Booger' might be a more appropriate moniker. Either way, my cat seems mystified by it...


Watch this video first thing in the morning, and I DEFY you to have a bad day....

Cool Nitzer Ebb Interview

Posted mainly to prove to all my friends who made fun of me that I was pronouncing the band's name correctly all along. Very good interview, though.

ORGANISATION (pre Kraftwerk) - Silver Forest

Organisation was the name of Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider's pre-Kraftwerk project from the late 70's. The project only ever released one album before breaking up, after which Ralf and Florian founded Kling Klang Studios and began writing music as Kraftwerk.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

EML Polybox Demo

Ever since I spotted it in a Devo video, I wondered what this thing was. Basically, it allowed you to build chords from monophonic synthesizers. This excerpt from Vintage Synth Explorer describes how it works:

"Poly-Box is a pitch following variable chord generator controlled by your synthesizer and Poly-Box's own keyboard with built-in memory. Poly-Box takes a single pitch from your synthesizer and creates two banks of pitch sources. Each pitch bank contains 13 simultaneously available pitch sources at precise semitone intervals - covering an entire chromatic octave. The pitch banks may be in the same or different octaves, and can cover the range from one above to three octaves below the synthesizer oscillator."

Free EQ from Voxengo

Critically acclaimed company Voxengo have released an update to their Overtone GEQ equalizer. As opposed to EQs that are as sonically transparent as possible, Overtone GEQ is designed to harmonically color whatever it is applied to. The plug-in is available for both Windows and Mac in AU and VST formats.


Arturia Buy One Get One Free Deal

As reported by Matrixsynth.
I'm more of a G-force man myself, but if you're a fan of the Arturia stuff (and dongles), now would be a good time to pick something up!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Cool Online Speech Synthesizer

AT&T Labs (formerly Bell Labs) have been at the forefront of speech synthesis research for a long time now. What many people don't know is that you can try this technology out for free via the web. Just follow the link below, type in the text you want to hear spoken, and you can either play it back immediately, or download it as a WAV file. Please pay special attention to the 'restrictions apply' portion of the website, as it indicates that musicians can't use speech from this website in commercial works. If you don't plan to commercially release something or just want to have fun making the speech synthesizer say dirty words (don't pretend you aren't going to do that, it insults us both...), the site is a very cool resource.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Creating New Drum Sounds Using Battery's Pitch Envelope

Until I had actually used it, Native Instrument's Battery drum sampler was one of those things I thought wouldn't be all that useful to me (I had received it as part of the Native Instruments Komplete package). After all, I had been using regular old samplers for my drums for years. After giving it a try, however, I found it really did help my workflow and efficiency when working with drums. Because it is aimed at drum and percussion oriented sounds, it pares down the features to include just those that are useful to working with those types of sounds. Thus, screen clutter is cut down, and you spend less time sorting through stuff you don't need to get to the stuff you do.
One of the cool features of Battery is the pitch envelope. It's useful for turning raw synth waveforms into percussive sounds, but if you work with it enough, it can actually be useful for transforming existing drum samples into something quite different from the original material.
To try it out, do the the following (please note I am using Battery 2, so the layout in Battery 3, may be a bit different:
1.) Load a drum sound into one of the cells and make sure that cell is selected for editing.
2.) Find the pitch envelope in the lower right hand corner and hit the 'on/off' switch so it glows yellow.
3. ) Now use the D1, B, and D2 parameters to adjust the shape of the envelope as you trigger the cell to hear the changes you are making. Short, sharp envelope shapes will often 'punch up' the drum sound, while longer ones can stretch out sounds in strange, unnatural ways.
4.) If you have a basic envelope shape you like, but it seems too extreme, simply dial back the 'Amount' parameter.

Below is a quick and dirty example where I have taken a heavy, distorted 909 kick and used the pitch envelope to transform it into a tighter, more synthetic kick. The original sound is first, with the pitch envelope version afterwards...

Monday, June 23, 2008

Live Dubstep Hotness

I love it when musicians perform a traditionally electronic type of music with traditional instruments. (And if you haven't seen KJ Sawka's incredible live drum n' bass drumming, check it out here!) Here is a drummer and a bassist with a boatload of effects doing some dubstep and drum n'bass style stuff live. I wish I knew what his effects rig was!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Free Reverb Plug-in

As reported on the excellent

A company called KResearch has just released KS-Reverb FS, a free reverb effect for PC & Mac available in VST and AU flavors. I haven't had a chance to try it yet personally, but having another reverb option is always a nice thing in my book.

Friday, June 20, 2008

The Manual

If you paid attention to club music in the 1990's at all, you undoubtedly remember KLF who had a huge hit called "What Time is Love?" What you may not know is that the band wrote a book about how to have a number one hit called "The Manual". No longer in print, the book promises that if you follow the instructions outlined in the book exactly, you too can have a number one hit.

It's quite an interesting read. Alternately funny, cynical, and depressing, they give a pretty frank and honest outline of what the mainstream music industry is like. And they should know! Before starting their musical partnership (as The JAMs and the Timelords before adopting the KLF moniker...), member Bill Drummond was a manager of bands like Echo & the Bunnymen as well as an A&R rep for the major WEA label, while member Jimmy Cauty was the guitarist in a band Drummond had signed to WEA. Prior to the boom of the Internet, The Manual was extremely difficult to find, but these days some enterprising individuals have transcribed it to PDF format for your enjoyment.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

An Insanely Useful Plug-In

One of the things that should be in every electronic musician's plug-in folder is a spectrum analyzer. As the name suggests, this tool measures the relative strength of different frequencies in a signal, allowing you to see the dominant frequencies, potential trouble spots, etc. Where it comes in most handy, however, is when you have multiple instruments in the same general frequency range that are clashing with one another. Using a spectrum analyzer, you can see the common frequencies between the tracks as well as the results of EQ cuts you make as you try to make them fit in the mix together. The problem is, most analyzers will only show you one signal at a time, meaning a lot of going back and forth between tracks while you are mixing. Vertex DSP's MultiInspector removes that limitation by letting you view the plots of multiple tracks at the same time in a single window. Although it has been around for at least a year, MultiInspector doesn't seem to be very well known among the musicians I know. There are two versions of the plug in: the free MultiInspector Free, which is limited to 44.1k files and only lets you plot 4 tracks at a time maximum, and the commercial MultiInspector ($115) which significantly expands the features. Both plug-ins are available for Mac in AU and VST formats, and for Windows in VST format.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Synth Punk Pioneers The Screamers

The Screamers were an LA punk band (originally from Seattle) active in the late 1970's. What made them different was that they used electric pianos and synthesizers instead of guitars and bass. They never released an album, but were influential to the likes of Jello Biafra of the Dead Kennedys and Darby Crash of the Germs. Several video clips of the band do exist, however... here's one of them.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Hip-hop/R&B Producer Gives Away Drum Sample Library

Compton-based producer DJ Quik (who has worked with many big name acts such as 2Pac and Janet Jackson), has apparently decided to retire from the music industry, and as a parting gift, he is offering his personal library of nearly 1,000 drum samples online totally free. Haven't checked them out, but with a resumé as impressive as his, I'd imagine he knows a thing or two...

Download them here...

Studio Interview with Portishead's Adrian Utley

Sonicstate TV via the always cool Matrixsynth blog:

Part 1 of an interview with Adrian Utley showcasing Utley's home studio and some of the synth gear used on the new Portishead album.

Production Tip: Generating Rhythms With Tape Delay

I do a lot of remixing and as such, I am always looking for new ways to come up with loops and rhythms that can enhance a track's danceability. Last year I did a remix for the AFI side-project Blaqk Audio in which I used a tape delay effect to create a rhythmic loop in the intro. This technique is actually quite an easy way to create unique, textured loops to your music and could just as easily be applied to non-dance forms of music (for example, using slow note values to contribute to an ambient piece...). I'm using Logic in the example, but you should be able to recreate the results in just about any DAW with a tape delay effect.

1.) Select a snippet of audio. This can be literally anything, but for best results you want something that has some rhythmic content to it such as a drum loop or a vocal. You only need about 1 bar's worth of material.
2.) On your effects inserts, insert a Tape Delay.
3.) The only tweak here that is absolutely required is to boost your feedback level to around 56 or so. This ensures that the delays will repeat over and over. Also set the note value of the delays to whole or half notes. You can use smaller divisions as well, but they don't yield useful results as often. Additionally, I usually like to tweak the high cut or low cut values so that each repetition evolves a little bit. Finally, make sure your project's tempo is the BPM of the project you are creating the loops for.
4.) Now bounce the audio. If you've set your feedback level correctly, it should repeat for just about as long as you want it to, so you should bounce out about 20 seconds or so to give yourself a variety of potential loops to choose from.
5.) Import the audio to the project you are using the loop for and assign it to a track. The bar lines on your DAW's timeline will now mark start and end points for possible loops. Go through and listen until you find a section you think has potential. Once you have, make cuts at the start and end point, delete the extra, and work with the loop as always. If your loop evolves a lot, there is no reason you can't use the whole piece too. Whatever works!

Below are two really quick and dirty examples. The first features delays created from a drum loop. There is a bar of the loop by itself, followed by a few bars over a beat and with sidechain compression applied for the pumping effect. The second was created from a snippet of vocals. Again, it starts with the loop by itself, and then goes over a beat with sidechain pumping, and some light tremelo for the auto-pan effect. Towards the end I added a little rhythmic filtering. Remember... this loop can just be the starting point for something. Don't be afraid to mangle it further with more effects.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Mini-review: Alesis Control Pad

I had long wanted to integrate drum pads of some sort into my studio, but for the longest time, I just couldn't find anything that suited my needs. A full drumset type kit was too big for my studio, and the more compact new Roland 'octapad' type sets all included onboard sounds I didn't want, and were a bit more than I was wanting to spend. I was extremely happy, then, when Alesis announced the release of the ControlPad: an 8 pad MIDI controller with no built-in sounds, and a very reasonable price (around $200 most places). So, after doing a ton of touring into the beginning of this year, I picked one up. Now that I've had some time to use it on a practical level, I thought I'd share my thoughts.

Construction and build quality are very solid. It has a good weight to it and feels like it could stand up to touring very well. It is also small enough to fit in an overhead bin on a plane for traveling musicians. Power is provided by USB or an optional AC adaptor. In addition to MIDI in and outs (MIDI info is transmitted over USB as well), there are two additional trigger inputs for additional pads if you need them, as well as foot switches for the kick and hihat and to increase or decrease the selected program number (all of which are optional). There are no audio outs, as this is just a controller and has no onboard sounds.

There are 21 internal memory locations for mapping out your own drum sets. The one thing that threw me off a little at first is that any changes you make to a set-up (which includes not only the MIDI note numbers each pad triggers, but individual velocity sensitivity, curve, and threshold settings, as well as individual MIDI channels per pad, if you like), are automatically written in whatever program number you are editing. There is no 'write' or 'save' switch. This is actually quite convenient and fast, but is something to keep in mind so you don't end up overwriting something you mean to keep.

In practical use, it really couldn't be simpler. You just plug in the USB cable to your computer and you are ready to go. There are no drivers or additional software to install (although it does come with a 'lite' version of FXpansion's BFD drum plug-in). I am not a 'real' drummer, so I can't speak to how the pads are to play on a very technical level, but the pads are solid with a nice 'bounce' to them that feels natural to play and isn't hard on the wrists like some drum pads I've tried in the past. My one criticism is that even with customized settings, the threshold level seems a bit high. You really need to wack it pretty hard even for low velocity hits. I suppose this is to prevent accidental triggers from stage monitors or other vibrations that can wreak havoc with drum pads in live settings. Honestly, though, this just takes a bit of adjustment to get used to.

Overall, I've been really happy with the ControlPad and would definitely buy it again. The price is about as cheap as you are going to find a drum pad controller for these days, and despite it being inexpensive, it feels well built and dependable. Is anyone else out there using on of these?

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Labeling Your Studio

If you have a fair number of hardware synths in your studio, you probably have a mess of different cables snaking about. Power cords, audio cables, and MIDI cables can quickly become a confused mess. This becomes an even bigger problem when you need to rearrange your studio or troubleshoot a MIDI connection, etc. Suddenly you have to figure where all those cables are going to and coming from. My solution for this is mailing labels. Just the standard Avery 5160 mailing label. These wrap around a cable nicely, and the resulting 'flag' can be written upon to label what the cable belongs to and where it's going. This can be especially handy if you have lots of extra cables and power supplies laying around. Especially with power supplies, there are sometimes proprietary connectors that might only work with a specific piece of gear. Before I started doing this, I had a whole drawer full of power cords I no longer knew the origins of. But now, I just label the cord when I get it and I never have to worry about forgetting what its purpose is. This works great for all the weird USB cables that come with cameras, proprietary cell phone chargers, marking all the plugs in a power strip, etc.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Free Access Virus Patches!

These used to only be available on my band's website for fans, but I figured I may as well share them with the rest of the world now. This is a bank of 128 sounds programmed on a Virus B. They should play back fine on all models, but if you are using a Virus A, some sounds might not sound right due to lack of features. This is a SYSEX file in MID format, so you can import it into your host of choice on a track routed to your Virus, make sure it is ready to receive SYSEX (and that you have backed up any patches it may overwrite), hit play on the sequencer, and you're good to go. Style-wise, these would mainly be of interest to people making EBM/industrial, trance, electro, etc. Enjoy!


Free Drum Machine Samples

Link goes to a sizable archive of vintage drum machine samples. Most are free, but the author asks for a PayPal donation for the most frequently-downloaded soundsets to help cover his bandwidth costs.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Korg Japan Announces New Slim-Line Controllers

Link leads to the full story as reported by MusicRadar. These look great. I definitely have a case of the 'wanties'.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Great Vokator Video Tutorials

Native Instruments' now-defunct Vokator plug-in is without a doubt, the coolest, most flexible vocoder I have ever used. It sounds absolutely fantastic and offers seemingly unlimited ways of mangling sound far beyond your bog standard Cylon voice. This flexibility comes at a price, however, and the complexity of the instrument means it is not the most user-friendly plug-in you're ever likely to work with. Even with the manual, it can be a daunting program to master. What clarified everything for me was this extremely thorough set of video tutorials by Mats Claesson.

UPDATE: Sorry for the previously broken link. It's fixed now!

Tim Exile FXboxing

A testament to what a ridiculously talented person can do with Native Instruments Reaktor in a live context.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Most Industrial Keyboard EVER

This is Boing Boing TV's coverage of ex-Talking Heads frontman David Byrne's new sound installation 'Playing the Building'. Byrne has rigged up an old pump organ to 'play' various parts of an old, abandoned ferry terminal. I can only imagine how awesome this sounds in person!

Kraftwerk FAQ

I never knew this existed, but it is an excellent resource on a band that isn't the most forthcoming with information in general. And if you don't know who Kraftwerk are, you REALLY need to visit. The Kraftwerk FAQ

The $24,000 Turntable

(Via the wonderful Synthtopia Blog...)

The British company Avid Hifi have introduced the Acutus turntable, which they claim uses a radically different design that reproduces music at a quality that was previously impossible. It certainly LOOKS the business. But seriously, if you have $24,000 to spend on a turntable, just give the money to me and I'll come to your house and play you some live music.

Free Drum Loops

Well.. kinda. has a ton of free loops in a pretty wide variety of styles, If you like them, you might want to throw a donation their way.

Grab You Some Loops, Son!

What Does a $5,000 Drum Machine Sound Like?

Meet the Drum Buddy, the creation of a New Orleans-based musician going by the name of Quintron. What makes it unique is that the drum sounds are triggered by light. I'm not sure the sounds it produces are all that useful (especially for the asking price), but apparently he has sold 44 of them, so hats off to him!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Lou Reed Plays the Moog Guitar

By now you probably have heard that Moog Music, known mainly for their legendary synthesizers, has decided to enter the guitar market. The Moog Guitar has e-bow sustain mechanisms built into each individual string for amazing sustain effects that were previously impossible. Oh yeah, and it costs almost $7,000 so you can believe that the guys featured in this video are among the 5 people in the world who can afford it...

Production Tip: Parallel Bitcrushing?

If you're somewhat familiar with the use of compressors in audio production, you've probably heard of Parallel Compression (also sometimes referred to as New York Style Compression). This technique involves taking, for example, a drum sound, duplicating it on another track, applying extremely heavy compression to this additional track, and then mixing the compressed track back in beneath the original, uneffected track. Done correctly, this technique adds punch and weight to the drums, but without totally destroying the transients.
In a lot of modern dance styles these days (especially electrohouse), very hard, snappy drums are common. One way of achieving this effect is by mimicking Parallel Compression, but using a bitcrusher instead to add the grit and hardness (By its nature, bitcrushing acts like a very extreme limiter). Simply set up the drum channel in question as you normally would, and then send that track to an effects send. Apply the bitcrush effect to the effects send and play back the drum track. As you are doing so, slowly turn up the send amount on your original track until you hear the drum getting a bit harder and more present. Please note that when I am talking about the bitcrush effect, I am not talking about extreme settings. You're looking for something like the default in Logic's Bitcrusher where it reduces the bit rate without the exteme aliasing you get from driving it harder. I find 12-bit sounds particularly nice on drums.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Free Drum Samples

You can never have too many drum sounds. Good thing then, that the fine folks over at Atom Splitter Audio are giving away 48 free drum and percussion sounds. And while you're there, check out their growing selection of other free sounds.

Friday, June 6, 2008

How to Sample off DVDs or the Internet

One of the most frequent questions I see posted on online musician forums these days has to do with using your computer to sample sounds or dialog off of DVDs or from Internet services like YouTube. Of course, if you are still using a hardware sampler, this is as easy as plugging the audio outs from your computer into the sampling input on your sampler. It's a little bit more complicated, however, if, like most of us, you are using software samplers these days. How can you record the audio output of one program to the audio input of another program? If you happen to be a Mac user like myself, the answer comes in the form of a nifty little $32 program from Rogue Amoeba software called Audio Hijack Pro. As the name of the software suggests, this program lets you 'hijack' the audio outputs from any program on your computer and make a recording of it in any of a variety of file formats. You can grab sounds or dialog from DVD, record Skype conversations, record Internet radio shows or podcasts, etc. Still not convinced? There is a full-featured demo available whose only restriction is that if overlays noise over any recording over ten minutes long. Give it a try, and by all means, if you use it, BUY it. It's very important, especially in the Mac community that software developers get our support.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Cool Free Sample Site

Head on over to Cyberworm's Rhythm Lab, for a sizeable selection of free sample goodness. Most of the samples are aimed at modern styles of music like glitch, electro, minimal house, drum n' bass, etc., but there are also some great one-shot synth and bass sounds that could be used for just about any style.

DVD Recommendation - Haack: The King of Techno

If you've never heard of Bruce Haack before, you're not alone. Prior to seeing this movie, I hadn't heard of him either. Whether you are familiar with him or not, however, Haack was a very unique character and an important pioneer in electronic music. Haack spent most of his career (from the early 60's) making children's music, largely using self-built synthesizers. He also made albums aimed more at the grown-up market, such as 1970's "Electric Lucifer", an album that occasionally bears a resemblance to the stuff Kraftwerk would eventually become famous for. "Haack: The King of Techno" is a very interesting look at Haack's life and legacy that demonstrates how sometimes true pioneers get obscured by the cobwebs of history.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Selling Your Music Online

Whether or not you buy into all the hype regarding the Internet and its potential to revolutionize the music industry, there is no doubt that digital sales are a growing market. Indeed, many see digital sales as the proverbial 'wave of the future' and predict the eventual end of CD as the format of choice for music delivery. Until a few years ago, however, getting your music on services like iTunes, Rhapsody, eMusic, etc. was damn near impossible unless you had the benefit of being signed to a decent sized label. Tunecore is a company that aims to change that, however. I will preface this by saying that I do not work for Tunecore, nor was this write-up solicited by Tunecore in any way. I am simply a musician running a small label who has used their services and found them extremely useful. Basically, the way it works is that you start an account, upload your artwork and songs, select which of the many services you wish to sell your music on, and then pay a one time fee per release, in addition to a yearly maintenance fee. Obviously the cost depends on the number of services you select, but for an average album, we're talking about $25. In 4-6 weeks, your songs will be propagated to the various services you selected and you're in business! The best part about this company is that they take none of your royalty income from the various services. The yearly fee is it. 100% of the royalties go to you. This provides a great way for musicians to get their music out there without the need for a label or the significant upfront costs of pressing a CD. I'd also be remiss if I didn't mention the great customer support. Despite evidence that the company is growing quickly, any time I have emailed them with a problem, I've received a response extremely quickly... often the same day I emailed them. It's true that digital distribution is not going to save the struggling music industry by itself, but it has, to an extent, democratized things and made it possible for even hobbiest musicians to get their music into the hands (and ears) of consumers in a way that hasn't been possible before.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Useful Logic Tip: Demix by Note Pitch

One of the things I love about computer-based recording and sequencing is that for any one thing you want to do, there are probably 5 different ways of achieving it. This allows you to work in a way that suits you best, thus streamlining your workflow.
A good example of this is drum programming. Some people out there prefer to program drums the old-fashioned way using step/grid programming. I've always found this a bit restrictive, though, and find I get much better results from simply playing out the rhythms manually using my drum pads or a synth keyboard. This method can present a problem of its own, however. If you've programmed the entire beat all in one pass, you can't solo the individual drum sounds so they can each be quantized, recorded and processed separately (compression, EQ). Yes, you could play in one part at a time, but I find that playing the snare and kick in the same pass at the very least leads to much more natural sounding results, especially with fills. Luckily, Logic has a feature that solves this problem. Select the MIDI region that has your beat in it and select Region > Split/Demix > Demix by Note Pitch, and Logic will put each drum sound on its own track, thus allowing you to record and process each sound individually. By the way, this feature is cool to use on melodies as well. Play in a melody and demix by note pitch as above. Now, assign each of the newly created tracks to a different synth. You can use subtlely different sounds for a more complex/'alive' sounding riff, or you can go nuts and use drastically different sounds for a sort of Trentemøller effect.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Free Mellotron Samples!

I've always had a thing for pre-digital sampling technology. Instruments like the Mellotron and the Chamberlin used note-by-note recordings of real world instruments on audio tape or disc-shaped media to allow musicians to easily and cheaply add previously big budget type sounds like orchestras and choirs to their own music. If you've heard the Beatles' "Strawberry Fields" (which used the Mellotron Flutes sound) or The Moody Blues' "Nights in White Satin" (which used the Mellotron Strings sound), then you've heard a Mellotron. The recordings themselves are certainly lo-fi by today's standards (these instruments were built in the 60's), but that's exactly the point! That 'wrongness' of the sounds is what makes them so cool. Because of their age, working Mellotrons are becoming increasingly rare. Thankfully there are upstanding citizens like Taijiguy out there to preserve and share these awesome sounds via the miracle of the Internet Tubes™! Currently he has posted samples of every note from the string section, GC3 brass, and the apparently rare Combined Choir. Get 'em while they're hot!


Welcome to Waveformless!

The content of this blog will likely be a little all over the place (thus the name) with the common thread throughout the whole thing being electronic music. At one time or another, that might mean info on cool free or cheap software for musicians, gear reviews, Logic tips, tutorials, free samples or synth sounds, profiles of musicians doing cool stuff, etc. I'm new to this whole blogging thing, so you'll have to bear with me as I get my feet wet. Or don't. Jerk.