Apple's home song creation tool is more mobile than ever.
by on June 10, 2011
Imagine the look on George Martin’s face if you transported back in time to the peak of 1960s Beatlemania and told him that in 2011 you’d be able to create an entire rock and roll song, without real instruments, on a touchscreen that’s almost thinner than one of the Fab Four’s best-selling LPs? He’d be a shade or two lighter than The Beatles’ White Album, we’d suspect. T3 tested the app in a bid to become a self-built rock god.
If you’ve never used GarageBand, or even played an instrument before there’s no need to be intimidated. Apple has you covered. As well as featuring a host of completely manual, on-screen guitars, bass keyboards and drum sets for you to hammer away at, GarageBand features “Smart” versions of all of the above.
The Smart Keyboard and Guitars label out chords for you that can be played with one tap, anywhere on the scale and in any key of your choosing. So all you have to do is look up the chords to your favourite song and follow the letters. It’s like a join-the-dots version of music making. If that’s not easy enough for you, autoplay will allow you to just select chords and create a more intricate jam based on your one-press chord changes.
Once you’ve mastered the tune you’d like to play (either manually or with a little help from the smart instruments) and selected the key, it’s time to lay that sucker down. Just hit the red record button and the metronome will count you in. Once you’ve played the tune, it will appear in your 8-track timeline. If it’s a guitar track, you can record drums, bass and piano on top of that or even sing vocals in time with the music. As long as you start recording every track from the beginning rather than try and line it up in post-production you’ll be fine.
The simplicity of creating music with this app is expressed perfectly by the default message when you share your masterpiece: “I just created a song with GarageBand using my iPad and I wanted you to hear it. Take a listen…”
The best app on the iPad bar none, GarageBand brings the key functionality from the revolutionary Mac studio and makes creating a musical masterpiece easier than it has ever been.
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