Posts Tagged ‘BeatBuddy’

Late last year, I had a conversation with David Packouz, founder of Singular Sound. We were discussing various things that could expand the use of the BeatBuddy drum machine pedal. Having just used its MIDI sync to record a demo, one of the first things that came to mind was using the BeatBuddy with a looper, and do a video tutorial on it. David asked what looper I thought would be good to use the BeatBuddy with – I had already done some research on various loopers, and was prepared for this question – and I replied that the Pigtronix Infinity Looper seemed to be the only one that seemed to have reliable MIDI sync capabilities.

And lo and behold, after receiving an email update from Pigtronix on the Infinity Looper, I saw the video below on the Infinity tutorial video page!

This is super-exciting to me because I’ve been wanting to use the BeatBuddy in a live setting for a while, but I wanted to do it with a looper!

Now… I have to save my pennies for the Infinity…

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BeatBuddyA few days ago, I received an update from the BeatBuddy mailing list that announced that BeatBuddy had won the prestigious “Best In Show” award at NAMM.

First off, I’m not at all surprised about this. I raved about it before it went to market, and was absolutely blown away by it when I finally received one.

And since I’ve had the BeatBuddy, it has been an absolute game-changer for me. Funny, I actually intended to use it live, but haven’t had enough time to practice with it and write down the settings I’d use for various songs that I perform in my solo gigs. Right now it’s the “cold season” at the restaurant I perform at weekly, so I’m seated behind a piano, which makes access to my pedals a bit difficult. But once I’m playing on the patio, I’ll be using the BeatBuddy fo’ sho’!

But just because I’m not gigging with it, doesn’t mean I’m not using it. I’m not even recording much these days, but I still get song ideas, and the BeatBuddy has been an invaluable tool to help me visualize and realize a song. And for just tooling around and practicing, you couldn’t ask for a better way to play to a beat when you don’t have a drummer around.

I’m so excited for the Singular Sound guys who’ve made this thing possible. It’s an incredible tool that has brought so much value to my songwriting process.

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BeatBuddyAs an active performing musician with 75% of my gigs being solo (I do roughly 200 gigs a year), I’m always looking for ways to expand my musical offerings either by introducing new material, or adding new gear. A few years ago, I started using a looper, and that changed the game for me; allowing me to solo over chord progressions I’d come up with live. But one thing that I missed, especially for certain songs, was percussion. Enter the BeatBuddy.

I’ve been waiting for this to arrive for many months, and mine arrived yesterday afternoon (it’s 1AM PST right now), and I’ve been playing with this pedal for the past few hours. It’s truly amazing!

I was impressed with the introductory video, and have been watching the growing number of video demos of various musicians playing with it while it has been in production. But nothing could prepare me for the real thing. I’m so totally blown away, it’s hard to describe what I’m feeling. This is another game-changer for me!

First off, it’s super easy to use. You start out with a tap to get an intro fill. The main beat then starts off. You tap another time to get a fill (most have 3 different fills). To change to the chorus, you hold down the pedal for a second or so. The BeatBuddy then does a lead-in fill, then changes the pattern. You then can tap to get fills in the chorus. To return back to the main pattern, you hold again.

The cool thing is that the fills aren’t restricted to playing just a whole measure. I was concerned about this, as some stuff I play has only 2-beat transitions. But with the BeatBuddy, that’s not a problem. If you tap on “2” you’ll get a three-beat fill. The damn thing is smart, and will just fill to the end of the measure then go back to the pattern! And like a it keeps perfect time. 🙂

Here’s something I quickly put together once I got the hang of it. Excuse the little mistakes I made. I did both guitar tracks in single takes.


Admittedly, before I start using this in a live setting, I’m going to have to both practice, and find the right drum tracks for the stuff I play. It’s really not hard to find a track to fit a song, but I do know that I’ll probably want to tweak some tracks to fit some songs.

I’m starting to fall asleep, so I’m going to sign off… But please, check out the BeatBuddy web site. Even if you’re not a gigging musician, you could use this just for practice. I know I’m going to do it. It’s better than playing to a metronome because you can add a bit of drama to your playing!

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The BeatBuddy Is Truly Amazing!


Quick note: You can still get a BeatBuddy for $199 if you join the crowdsource campaign by February 4. After that the unit will retail at $399. For more information, go to mybeatbuddy.com.

I introduced the BeatBuddy drum machine pedal several weeks ago and have provided regular updates on this incredible device that I believe will completely shake up the market once its released and people have started using it. Originally, I didn’t pay too much attention to its extraneous features other than the MIDI sync – I want to use it with a sync-able looper – but when considering all the features that come with the pedal itself, it’s more of a drum machine “system” than just something you plop on your board. You can certainly do that, and admittedly, once I get mine, I’ll forgo all the peripheral stuff and just gig with it.

But once the dust settles from my excitement about this new toy, I’ll turn to the system management stuff. For instance, the BeatBuddy comes with PC and Mac software that provide you with the capability to manage practically everything in the device. You can create folders, song lists, and even add and edit entire songs! Check this demonstration out:

For my solo gigs, I can see setting up a folder with 5 or 6 songs set up specifically for the tunes I play in my gigs. With the optional foot switch controller, it’ll be easy to choose the song I need, then just go to town. But if I have special requirements (like for my own songs that I perform), I can use the software to create a custom song, then store that in the list as well. I can even add my own 16- or 24-bit WAV content myself! So the BeatBuddy isn’t just some single-dimensional drum machine playback device; it’s a full-on system that will change the way you approach your performances.

I was just thinking that I could use the BeatBuddy with my church band when we don’t have a drummer. Now THAT would be totally awesome. It would be a bit tricky to train all the musicians to follow the BeatBuddy, but I think with practice, we’ll be able to really rock it up!

Here’s another instructional video the BeatBuddy guys put together to demonstrate how you use the unit and navigate through its menus, plus using a dual foot switch for added control. This thing is absolutely easy to use!!!

To follow and get regular YouTube updates, go to the MyBeatBuddy YouTube page.

As I alluded to above, I think the BeatBuddy is going to turn the market on its ear. How it didn’t win a NAMM “Best In Show” award is beyond me. But looking at the list, it’s mainly mainstream manufacturers and some obscure ones. That’s too bad, because if this unit gets into big box retail stores, it’ll sell like hotcakes; of that I have no doubt. Everyone I’ve been talking to about this unit wants one. Oh well… maybe they’ll get the award next year.

In any case, if this is your first time hearing about this amazing device/system, check out their site at http://mybeatbuddy.com!

And just to be clear, I’m not at all affiliated with the BeatBuddy guys, but the BeatBuddy holds so much promise for me that I can’t help sharing my excitement!

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The BeatBuddy Campaign Is Live

BeatBuddyI’m excited to announce that the BeatBuddy team launched their IndieGogo campaign at midnight this morning, and it has gotten a great response. The most exciting thing about this crowd-funding campaign is that the first 500 people have the opportunity to get a BeatBuddy for only $179! That’s about half the price of what the BeatBuddy will be when it is released to the public!

When I last checked, as of 9:30 PST, they already had 216 people fund at this level, so chances are that this level will fill up soon.

BTW, no, I’m not affiliated with them, but you know me, when the Dawg sniffs out cool, new gear, he just keeps barkin’ about it. So if you can swing it, head on over to the BeatBuddy IndieGoGo site!

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BeatBuddyYesterday, I introduced the BeatBuddy, a new “drum machine in a pedal” pedal. I’m still excited about this new offering, and have been chomping at the bit to share more information with you.

Well… I just received an email from David Packouz, the BeatBuddy’s inventor, and he said he just released his IndieGoGo promo video. Once you watch it, you’ll be able to see for yourself why I’m so excited about this new and upcoming product. Check it out:

Here are some major features of the BeatBuddy:

  • Produces 24-bit sound
  • Has a MIDI-sync port! This is huge if you use a looper that has MIDI-sync.(I’m in the market for one right now)
  • 10 drumsets and over 200 preset songs
  • Fully customizable via USB port
  • SD card port for extra storage

That’s just a few of the features that have gotten me so excited. I see lots of gear released every year, but most of it doesn’t really move me mainly because they’re vamps on the same or similar theme. Or, even if they are totally cool, lots of times I don’t have a particular application for them. A good example of this are envelope filters. I dig them, but I’ve never had the chance to apply one. On the other hand, the BeatBuddy is something I can use for my solo gigs – of which I do at least 100-150 a year. For me, it’s the one thing that I have been missing, and have been trying to figure out how best to employ some rhythm.

As you will have seen in the video, they’re campaigning for some financial support to get their production off the ground. I don’t know the details for what you get for a particular funding amount, but for me, this is something I’m definitely going to try to contribute to.

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BeatBuddyThe pedal you see to the left is called the BeatBuddy, and it ain’t even out yet! But the damn thing’s so cool that I couldn’t keep my mouth shut about it. This is a drum machine with over 200 beat patterns built in. But at the press of the switch and/or an optional footswitch, you can add fills, change to a chorus beat, and even do an ending fill!

I have to admit that when I first saw the email from the maker, David Packouz, I treated it like many of the gear announcements I get on a regular basis. I put it aside until I could have some time to take a good look at the materials they sent thinking, “Ho-hum, more gear…” 99% of the time, it’s nothing special. But when I took the time to view their promotional video (sorry, it was a draft, and they asked me not to repost it), by the end of the video, I knew that this was something I needed to have.

They will be launching a campaign to help finance production on IndieGoGo on December 16 at 11:00 am EST. That’s when you’ll get the full rundown of what this thing can do.

For me, after watching the promotional video, I was thinking that as a solo artist, this is exactly what I’ve been missing. I could get plenty of mileage out of something like this! One thing I was thinking was that I’d have to practice with this enough so I could use it with my looper as well. That way I could play this along with my looper and play leads over a loop AND a beat! That would be freakin’ awesome! But I’m probably getting ahead of myself. First these guys have to get funded… I’m game. I’ll probably contribute!

Anyway, I’ll be posting more as I know. Stay tuned!

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