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    Roland update SP-404 sampler

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    Roland have just announced a major update to their popular SP-404 sampler. The new SP-404 MkII sports an enhanced OLED display (now with hi-res waveform view), improved pads (which Roland say allow for greater expression), a beefed-up effects section, and an all-new sound library.One of the major improvements is that sampling time is effectively now unlimited, subject only to the capacity of SD card you use (the 404 MkII has 16GB of internal storage, though much of that is of course populated with the supplied sound library). Another major boon is the ability to work on AA battery power, for completely untethered mobile music-making.

    Roland SP-404 MkII rear panelThe SP-404 MkII’s internal sequencer is powerful, Roland say, and offers a multitude of creative features such as swing, pad layering, note repeat, and pattern chaining — meaning you can build up complete arrangements using the 404 MkII alone.

    The effects section is equally well appointed, boasting as it does a plethora of treatments including a vocoder, guitar amp modelling, pitch correction, cassette and vinyl emulation, a resonator effect, and much more besides.

    Another new feature to the MkII is Roland Cloud integration. Using a dedicated Roland Cloud app, you can import and export samples and whole projects, convert legacy SP-404 projects to MkII format, assign samples to pads, and download new sounds from Roland’s Beatmaker collection.

    The Roland SP-404 MkII is due to go on sale in November, and will carry a tantalising price of $499.99.

    Video of Introducing the Roland SP-404MKII Creative Sampler and Effector

    Content with images and videos from Sound On Sound.com

    Rode update microphone boom arm

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    Something of a staple in broadcast circles, the Rode PSA1 is in use by countless radio and podcast studios, and now the Aussie mic makers have announced a major upgrade. The new PSA1+ maintains the original’s sprung parallelogram arrangement, but is said to be completely silent during movement and readjustment, and offers superior isolation from desk-borne vibrations thanks to its re-engineered rubber mounting system.Other improvements include an extended reach, a full 360 degrees of rotation, and the ability to mount a wider range of microphone weights — from 94g up to a hefty 1.2kg. As on the earlier version, it features an integrated cable management system, and is compatible with all standard microphone clips and shockmounts.

    The Rode PSA1+ is available to buy now, priced at US $129.

    Content with images and videos from Sound On Sound.com

    Watch System of a Down Play ‘Genocidal Humanoidz’ Live for First Time

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    System of a Down played their first concert in over two years Friday at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena, finally giving the metal band an opportunity to play “Genocidal Humanoidz” and “Protect the Land” live for the first time.

    Both tracks arrived in November 2020, and marked System of a Down’s first new music in 15 years. Nearly a year later, System of a Down returned to the stage to kick off their five-date West Coast arena tour; Serj Tankian and company last performed together in May 2019. 

    Prior to “Protect the Land” Friday, Tankian told the crowd, “The combined forces of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Syria mercenaries attacked a peaceful people living in Nagorno-Karabakh who have been living there on their indigenous land for thousands of years. Those are our people. At the time, System of a Down put out two songs to help bring attention to the cause, and what we want to do is thank you, because you helped join our effort to raise funds and bring attention to this very important event.”

    As System of a Down told Rolling Stone in 2020, they were inspired to end their lengthy studio hiatus — they hadn’t put out new music since 2005’s Hypnotize — to record “Genocidal Humanoidz” and “Protect the Land” after seeing the country of Azerbaijan start a conflict with Armenia; all band members are of Armenian descent.

    “This is gruesome shit that’s going on,” bassist Shavo Odadjian told Rolling Stone at the time. “There’s nothing humane about it. They’re not saying, ‘Oh, leave our lands. We’ll be so polite to help you leave.’ They’re massacring people and doing all sorts of cowardly, disgusting things. And that just touches all of us [in the band].”

    In addition to the two new tracks, System of a Down’s 30-song set list was heavy on Toxicity, with the metal act playing 11 of the LP’s 14 tracks. The group next play Saturday night in Fresno, California, with the brief trek concluding October 23rd at Los Angeles’ Banc of California Stadium.

    Content with images and videos from Rolling Stones.com..

    Ronnie Tutt, Drummer for Elvis Presley and Jerry Garcia, Dead at 83

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    Ronnie Tutt, drummer and original member of Elvis Presley’s TCB Band and the Jerry Garcia Band and a famed session musician who performed alongside Billy Joel, Buckingham Nicks and more, has died at the age of 83.

    Elvis Presley Enterprises announced Tutt’s death Saturday, writing on the Graceland website, “All of us with Elvis Presley Enterprises were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Ronnie Tutt. In addition to being a legendary drummer, he was a good friend to many of us here at Graceland.” No cause of death was provided.

    “We enjoyed each time he joined us here to celebrate Elvis Week, Elvis’ Birthday and many other special occasions. Ronnie was an amazing ambassador to Elvis’ legacy – sharing his memories of working with Elvis with fans – as well as bringing Elvis’ music to arenas around the globe through later Elvis in Concert shows and performances.”

    The Dallas-born drummer joined Presley’s famed TCB Band (short for Takin’ Care of Business) following the singer’s 1968 comeback special, with Tutt serving as drummer for Presley’s 1969 Las Vegas opening and his subsequent residencies; Tutt remained with the group through Presley’s death in 1977, and continued to perform with the TCB Band in the decades that followed.

    Beginning the mid-Seventies — while still in the employ of Presley — Tutt became an in-demand touring and session drummer, spending two years in the first incarnation of the Jerry Garcia Band — including playing on heir 1978 debut LP Cats Under the Stars and Garcia’s solo albums Reflections and Run for the Roses, as well as the group’s live gigs

    In a 2017 interview with Rolling Stone, Tutt talked about the differences between performing alongside Presley and Garcia, often in the same weekend.

    “I’d always laugh because one night I’d be in Vegas playing with rhinestone two-piece outfits and the next night I’d be out with Garcia with the tie-dye and a pair of jeans. Socially speaking it was really different,” Tutt said

    “Elvis’ music was a lot more in your face; you could never play enough. But with Jerry we never talked about it, but I just knew my role with that band, no matter what configuration it was, was to help keep it together.”

    Tutt also notably toured with Neil Diamond and played drums on a pair of Billy Joel albums — 1973’s The Piano Man and 1974’s Streetlife Serenade — appearing on the hits “Piano Man,” “The Ballad of Billy the Kid” and “The Entertainer.” Other credits include playing on the lone Buckingham Nicks album in 1973, Gram Parsons’ GP and Grievous Angel, Elvis Costello’s King of America and Johnny Cash’s John R Cash.

    In Rolling Stone’s 2017 interview, Tutt reflected on a career that spanned over 60 years. “I just remember the good things, that’s for sure. You got to,” he said. “I just remember laughing a lot and having a good time musically, so I have nothing but good memories.”

    Content with images and videos from Rolling Stones.com..

    Adele Shatters Single-Day Streaming Records With ‘Easy on Me’

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    Less than 24 hours after its release, Adele’s long-awaited new single “Easy on Me” already shattered the single-day streaming records on numerous services, including Spotify and Amazon Music.

    On Friday, just 18 hours after the single’s arrival, Spotify tweeted that “And just like that, @Adele set a new record,” noting that she was already the record holder for most-streamed song in the single day. 

    When the 24-hour window had closed, the final tally from the streaming service was 24 million global streams, Spotify told Rolling Stone Saturday. That total breaks the previous single day streaming record set earlier this year by BTS’ “Butter,” which reached just under 21 million streams on May 23rd, 2021.

    Additionally, “Easy On Me” also broke the record for most-streamed song in a day in the United Kingdom with over 3.2M streams.

    Amazon Music also announced that “Easy on Me” received the most first-day global streams of any song in the history of that streaming service.

    Earlier this week, Adele revealed that her much-anticipated new LP 30 will arrive November 19th. “I’ve learned a lot of blistering home truths about myself along the way. I’ve shed many layers but also wrapped myself in new ones. Discovered genuinely useful and wholesome mentalities to lead with, and I feel like I’ve finally found my feeling again. I’d go as far as to say that I’ve never felt more peaceful in my life,” she said. “And so, I’m ready to finally put this album out,” she wrote of the album, the follow-up to 2015’s 25.

    “It was my ride or die throughout the most turbulent period of my life. When I was writing it, it was my friend who came over with a bottle of wine and a takeaway to cheer me up. My wise friend who always gives the best advice.”

    Content with images and videos from Rolling Stones.com..

    Interesting George Strait Facts

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    Check out these George Strait Facts and discover something new about the King of Country Music.  George achieved legendary status in country music with 60 number-one country music hits.  George has more number one songs than any other artist in any genre of music.  He is also a rare country singer that is a real Texas rancher and cowboy.  Check out this listing of interesting facts about George Strait and see if you learn something new.
    George Strait Facts
    1. When Strait isn’t wearing his cowboy hat, he often goes unrecognized in public.

    A woman in Key West walked up to a shirtless Strait as he sat outside of a recording studio and spoke to him. She said, “My husband says that George Strait is in there, cutting a record, and I told him that can’t be true. Why would he cut a record in this little place?”

    Strait said to the woman: “Honey, I was just in there, and I didn’t see him.”

    2. George Strait often records in a tiny studio in Key West owned by Jimmy Buffet.

    3. George Strait has had eighty-six singles become Top 10 Hits on Billboard’s country charts, and 60 have gone to No. 1 including 44 on Billboard’s Country Music charts and 16 on the Mediabase charts.

    4. George Strait prefers to not tell his own story in his songs.

    “I don’t think there’s anything autobiographical about my material, unless it’s subconsciously,” Strait said. “I just look for a song I like, and when I hear it I know it right away.”

    5. George Strait’s 13-year-old daughter (Jenifer Strait) passed away in a car accident in 1986.

    “I just kind of shut down,” he says. “I just didn’t feel like talking about it, so I quit doing interviews.” In 1988, he released a sad song called “Baby Blue” which was dedicated to his daughter.

    6. When Strait plays in Las Vegas he flies in on a plane he owns and stays at “The Mansion”, a semi private hotel hidden next to the MGM Grand.

    7. When Strait started out he was seen as a sex-symbol and used to have to donate all the flowers that women gave him to local hospitals because he had no room for them on his tour bus.

    8. “Unwound” was originally pitched to Johnny Paycheck, before George Strait decided to record it.

    “He was in jail, so they gave it to me” Strait recalls.

    9. Strait started the George Strait Team Roping Classic in 1982 which he judges every year. It is the only event Strait makes a yearly appearance at, usually arriving on horseback.

    10. Since 1981, Strait has been recording for the same label, MCA Nashville, outlasting virtually all the executives and fellow artists.

    11.  George Strait made his Grand Ole Opry debut in 1982 and is not a member.  George has turned down Opry membership as he does not want to have to travel to Nashville to perform.  George Strait was on the Opry Saturday October 9, 1982  and that appears to have been the only time he was on the Opry.  Willie Nelson also gave up his Opry membership when he moved back to Texas in 1972.

    12.  The George Strait “Check Yes or No” song was one of his 60 #1 country music hits. This song was released in September 1995 as the lead single from his box set Strait Out of the Box. It peaked at number-one on both the U.S. Billboard country chart and the Canadian RPM country chart.

    There you have it! Check out a classic #1 country song from George Strait below!
    George Strait Check Yes or No Music Video

    Source From: Country Fan Cast

    Audio Test Kitchen release ATK Player

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    Audio Test Kitchen, the ambitious microphone comparison website, have released a browser app called ATK Player. The ATK Player essentially packages all of their audio files into an easy-to-use playback engine, which the company envisage retailer and distributor websites using extensively on things like product information pages, online shops and so on.

    Given that Audio Test Kitchen have, to date, captured 14,000 fully cross-comparable audio files, covering over 300 microphones from 55 different manufacturers, the market for an online player to showcase the quality of each of these mics is potentially very large! As ATK founder Alex Oana puts it: “As a consumer, wouldn’t you want to be able to hear the sound of audio products and try-before-you-buy on the website where you’re about to buy?”

    The ATK Player is set to become available in two versions: either as a playback-only device, perhaps for retailers who sell a number of the microphones that ATK have already tested, or in a more advanced version that lets subscribers add their own audio files and data. The latter option would be ideal for manufacturers who want to provide comparisons of their own microphones, for example, but it’s not limited to mics: ATK envisage audio interface manufacturers, music software developers and even instrument makers getting in on the action. Of course, there’s no reason why studio proprietors wouldn’t want to get involved, perhaps using the ATK Player to showcase their own microphone collection, or to provide ‘before and after’ mixing and mastering examples.

    To find out more about how to use the ATK Player on your website, contact Audio Test Kitchen using the details below. If you scroll down a little further, you’ll see our exclusive behind-the-scenes video about how ATK’s meticulous microphone comparisons are made.

    Video of Audio Test Kitchen – Mic Comparison

    Content with images and videos from Sound On Sound.com

    Beyerdynamic launch Pro X range of mics & headphones

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    Beyerdynamic have just announced a new series of products aimed at content creators. The Pro X series comprises two over-ear headphones, and a pair of studio microphones.

    The DT 700 Pro X and DT 900 Pro X are, respectively, closed-back and open-back headphones, both of which incorporate a number of innovative design and manufacturing techniques. Their diaphragms are an all-new design, claimed to combine low weight with high rigidity. Their voice coils, meanwhile, employ a copper alloy, devised by Beyerdynamic, which weighs roughly 40 percent less than pure copper but which retains high electrical conductivity. This voice coil, combined with the powerful neodymium driver magnet, are said to yield an improved transient response compared with previous Beyerdynamic designs, while maintaining high sensitivity, making them suitable for use with both professional and consumer devices.

    In terms of specs, both headphones boast a 5Hz-40kHz frequency response, and a 48Ω impedance. THD at 1kHz is specified as being just 0.04 percent, for a 1mW input.

    Both new headphones will ship with 1.8m and 3m cables, each terminating in a mini-XLR plug (for the headphones) at one end, and a gold-plated mini-jack at the other (small-to-big adaptors are also provided). Beyerdynamic also tell us that all constituent parts — from the memory-foam cushioning and metal headband to the earcups, yokes and cables — are all easily replaceable at their service centres, ensuring operational longevity.

    The DT 700 Pro X and DT 900 Pro X are priced a little above Beyerdynamic’s established DT 770 Pros, at €249 apiece. As ever where open- and closed-back headphones are concerned, Beyer recommend the former for tracking, DJ’ing, and other scenarios where isolation from the outside world is desirable, and the latter for situations where fidelity is paramount, such as mixing and mastering.

    Next up are the M70 Pro X and M90 Pro X microphones. The former is an end-address dynamic model designed for the spoken word, and which Beyerdynamic are touting as being ideal for streamers, podcasters, vloggers and the like. It features a cardioid polar pattern, a sensitivity of 1.8mV/Pa, and a frequency response of 50Hz-18kHz (no tolerances were given).

    The M90 Pro X is a side-address cardioid microphone, and its capacitor capsule endows it with a broader frequency response of 20Hz-20kHz (again, unqualified). It’s capable of handling SPLs up to 133dB A-weighted (at 1kHz), and though it doesn’t feature a high-pass filter, it does ship with a newly designed cat’s-cradle shockmount and a gooseneck pop filter, which between them should take care of any extraneous low frequencies.

    The M70 Pro X dynamic mic is priced at €249, while the M90 Pro X carries a price of €299.

    All of the new products in the Pro X series are built in Beyer’s own factory in Germany, using a combination of high-end manufacturing equipment and hand assembly. They also all exude the kind of quiet, understated competence we’ve come to expect from Beyerdynamic products, and we look forward to putting them through their paces in an in-depth SOS review soon.

    Content with images and videos from Sound On Sound.com

    Watch Dave Grohl Read Ringo Starr’s ‘Octopus’s Garden’ Children’s Book

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    Dave Grohl, The Storyteller himself, appeared on the BBC kids series CBeebies to read fellow drummer Ringo Starr’s Beatles-inspired children’s book Octopus’s Garden.

    “After a busy day of rocking out, I like to relax by telling stories about places I’d like to go. Sometimes I imagine being up in space, zooming through the stars, or traveling through time with enormous dinosaurs. Sometimes, I like to be under the sea,” Grohl said during his introduction to the 2014 bedtime story.

    “I love this story because it was written by someone who plays the drums, just like me,” adding that Starr is “my hero.”

    The Foo Fighters frontman then recited the Starr’s book — based on the Abbey Road classic and accompanied by the book’s illustrations by Ben Cort — in a soft-spoken, bedtime-inducing manner. “Why don’t we all lay our head on the seabed and dream of underwater adventures,” Grohl said at the book’s end.

    Earlier this week, Grohl released his memoir The Storyteller, a more-adult tome about his life and career, from his tenure in the punk band Scream to drumming for Nirvana to fronting the Foo Fighters.

    “When the lockdown happened, I suddenly had nothing to do. I never have nothing to do,” Grohl said of the book. “I’ve always been creatively restless, so I thought I would spend my time writing these short stories for an Instagram page [called] ‘davestruestories.’ And in doing that I fell in love with writing. I thought, ‘Oh you know what? Maybe I’ll write a book,’ without realizing how gargantuan of a project it would be.”

    He added, “The idea was to choose the stories that best described what it’s like to be behind the curtain and on the inside of the music, from the drum stool looking out. To play music, have this beautiful family, travel the world, meet people from all walks of life, I never take any of this for granted, believe me.”

    Content with images and videos from Rolling Stones.com..

    10 Facts About Country Music Star Tanya Tucker

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    This country star has been in the limelight since the early 1970s. Enjoy these fast facts about Tanya Tucker!

    Tanya Tucker is one of country music’s most famous female recording artists. Enjoy these quick facts about the star below!

    1. Tanya released her first song, “Delta Dawn” at the age of 13. The song was released in May 1972, and reached the Top Ten in the country charts.  Watch her perform “Delta Dawn” below!
    Tanya Tucker Delta Dawn Video

    2. Tanya Tucker dated country star Glenn Campbell from 1980-1981. They recorded a few songs together, most notably being a cover of Bobby Darin’s “Dream Lover”.
    Tanya Tucker and Glen Campbell Dream Lover Video

    3. Tanya has three children: Grayson, Presley, and Layla.

    photo: Getty Images

    4. In 1991, Tanya Tucker was voted by the Country Music Association for “Female Vocalist of the Year”. But, had just given birth to her second child, Tanya missed the event.

    5. Tucker is one of the few female artists that belong to the “Outlaw Country” genre. Some other notable artists in this genre include Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Merle Haggard, and Waylon Jennings.

    6.  Tanya was born in Seminole, Texas on October 10, 1958.  She spent much of her childhood moving throughout the Southwest as her father pursued construction jobs.

    7.  After Delta Dawn, her second single, “Love’s the Answer,” also became a Top Ten hit later in 1972. Tucker’s third single, “What’s Your Mama’s Name,” became her first number one hit in the spring of 1973. She achieved two other number ones — “Blood Red and Goin’ Down” and “Would You Lay with Me (In a Field of Stone)” that established Tucker as a major star.

    8.  Tanya released a tribute song “Forever Loving You” that she wrote for the love of her life: music icon Glen Campbell.  One of the lyrics in the tribue is, “I’d hold you in my arms tonight just like we used to do, and I could leave this world a happy girl forever loving you,”

    9.  In a 2016 interview with Dan Rather, Country Music star Tanya Tucker talked about depression and her terrible medical ordeal that burned her face in 2008.  During a routine chemical peel procedure, the laser beam started a fire and burned Tanya Tucker’s face.

    10.  Tanya Tucker recovered from the incident and went on to become the big Country Music winner at the 2020 Grammy Awards taking home two trophies for Best Country Album as well as Best Country Song for “Bring My Flowers Now” .

    Source From: Country Fan Cast