Musicians always have the desire to record our music, be it our own or that music we are listening to around us. They also have longed for a way to quickly capture musical thoughts and ideas that pop into our heads. Usually these ideas pop into our heads at the most inopportune times – on the train on the way to work, at work during lunch break, or maybe waiting in line. How do we capture those ideas quickly with a minimum of fuss?
Have you ever used Apple’s Voice Memos app because it is so straightforward and drop dead simple to use? Then you also were probably left with a desire for that app to offer just a little bit more!
This is going to be a simple and straightforward post about a few apps that are great options to simply record. We are not talking about apps like GarageBand and Cubasis, nope, just apps that let you record quickly and easily. They let you record one or more tracks, do a few basic edits and maybe have a few other “extras” like adding reverb or sharing.
App Around The Longest -
Hokusai (Free) – (Introduced on August 1, 2011) [Has both iPad and iPhone versions]
Newest App (Geared towards vocalists [or in my opinion, ANYONE] ) -
Take Creative Vocal Recorder (Free) – (Released July 10, 2014) [Only has iPhone app but it will run on an iPad.]
App Directed Towards Instrumentalists -
reSonare (Introduced April 15, 2014) [Only has iPhone app but it will run on an iPad.]
I love the way Hokusai allows you to interact with the audio on a touch interface. This app allows you to do multitrack recording and also allows you to edit that audio – trim the ends, cut, copy, paste, delete and you even have some filters and special effects! You can transfer the edited audio via USB, DropBox or use the Open In option to send to other apps.
TAKE CREATIVE VOCAL RECORDER:
Takes the drop-dead simplicity of your voice memos and combines to with features custom tailored to vocalists (Or any musician, in my opinion) Propellerhead has released a wonderful app today that allows you to start recording right away, with the tap of just one button!
But it gives you just a few more options as well. There are three parts per song you can record, allowing for some harmonies or an instrumental track. There is the all important metronome too! This metronome is not Beethoven’s metronome though, it has some fun loops and beats to get you inspired to musical greatness. Then there are even some basic effects controls that let you control the Reverb/Delay added to your recording. This is important because once again we are recording with our iOS mic which records in mono. Propellerhead designed this app to work specifically with that scenario though and engineered the app to maximize the quality of those recordings.
Of course what would an app be these days without ways to share our musical explorations? FaceBook, Twitter and email all are covered here as well as sending through a message.
This is a beautiful looking app and joins a fine family of Propellerhead apps on the app store that you need to check out!
The family includes:
- Figure ($0.99) – builds some great 3 part music. The tag reads, “Got 3 minutes to make some music?” If you don’t have this yet it’s a ton of fun! The kids love it because it is so easy to get some pretty rocking music out of!
- Thor Polysonic Synthesizer ($15) – one of the best synth apps out there.
- ReBirth for iPad ($15) – Legendary software reborn for iOS
For the “classical” musician to record themselves performing on their instruments. Has pre-sets for different instruments. So if you are recording a flute you would then select the Flute preset for optimal sound vs having the Piano preset selected. Also helps improve the mono recording you get by using the built-in microphone on iOS devices by giving you a stereo widening effect along with EQ and reverb. Gives you a one click step to mastering your mono recording into stereo with pseudo-stereo and specialization techniques. (Read that as – Sounds better than plain old, normal recordings!)
Professional Musicians helped develop the app settings and they also created guidelines for recording each instrument that you can read in the app.
Allows you to share via email, Wi-Fi, iTunes files haring, DropBox and my favorite for students, SoundCloud.