Dive into a tech-infused musical journey with hosts Jonathan Boyd and Ryan Withrow on the “Future of Music” podcast, where, in the absence of a guest, they unpack three groundbreaking pieces of technology designed to revolutionize the world of guitar gear and learning. In this episode, explore the convergence of AI, AR, VR, and mixed reality as they introduce game-changing tools that promise to replace physical guitar gear and enhance the learning experience.
Join us as we delve into the realm of guitar loopers, tuners, and lessons that seamlessly integrate with cell phones and mixed-reality headsets. From the intricacies of tuning a guitar to the immersive experience of learning and playing, discover how these innovations are reshaping the landscape of guitar education.
This episode serves as your guide to the future of guitar technology, offering insights into the transformative power of AI, AR, and mixed reality. Whether you’re a seasoned guitarist or a beginner, this exploration of cutting-edge tools promises to redefine your musical journey.
Ditch the Gear: How Mixed Reality is Revolutionizing Music
From guitar tuners to recording studios, musicians have relied on bulky, expensive equipment for decades. But innovative mixed reality technology is rendering much of that hardware obsolete. In their latest “Future of Music” podcast, hosts Ryan Withrow and Jonathan Boyd explore some mind-blowing apps and concepts that allow musicians to leave their gear behind and jump into versatile virtual environments.
Immersive Guitar Instruction Arrives on Your Phone
As longtime guitarists, Jonathan and Ryan often muse about a learning system that can analyze physical fretboards and provide visual guidance. That future is already here in the form of Fretello. This mobile app uses your iPhone’s camera and mirrors an augmented display onto your guitar. It can identify strings and frets, showing precise finger placements with dots and colors. Fretello even checks the pitch of notes as you play them.
While the video demo looks a bit crude on a 2D phone screen, it represents enormous potential. Jonathan notes: “We’re seeing the beginning of something that Ryan and I have talked about for a long time…you see what to do in your mind.”
Rather than watching someone else play guitar on a flat YouTube video, now the notes and sequences you should play appear right on your instrument. This is the personalized, instant feedback that makes in-person lessons so effective, only it’s available on-demand through an app.
Say Goodbye to Tuners, Metronomes, and Other Clunky Gadgets
Stage performers are all too familiar with the frustrating dance of leaning over to mess with temperamental guitar tuners and metronomes mid-song. But visionary developer Brennan Hatton has transported those tools into mixed reality headsets.
His video demo shows a virtual tuner perfectly tracking the neck of his guitar as he moves around. It stays fixed in his field of view rather than on some pedal board underfoot. He’s also built an ambient metronome and prototyped a looper that records audio directly through the headset and then plays it back so he can solo over top.
This is the epitome of fading tech hardware into the background while the creative experience remains frictionless and focused. No more distractions to disrupt the musical flow state.
Sheet Music and Tab Support Changes the Game
Fellow developer Severin Fiala has Kendrick Lamar blasting through his headset as he casually shreds along to an intricate tablature readout hovering just inches from his fretting hand. It updates in real-time, following his vision so he never has to look elsewhere.
For guitarists, pianists, and other musicians who heavily rely on sight-reading notation, this could eliminate chronic neck strain and frustration. The potential benefits of live orchestras are also huge.
The auto-zooming view means squinting to decipher tiny notes is a thing of the past too.
When Imagination Becomes Reality
This innovative gear points to a future where the only instrument needed is the one in the musician’s hands. The rest exists virtually. Jonathan believes digitizing traditional studio infrastructure unlocks limitless potential:
“It’s entering the imagination age…the easier it is going to be to manifest any version of whatever you can imagine and make it actually happen.”
Why not hold a concert from Mars or Deep Space then? As mixed reality passenger headsets become mainstream in the next decade, Ryan predicts musicians will gather gigantic followings from their living rooms.
The tools showcased in this podcast episode represent the vanguard paving an exciting new creative frontier. Music production and instruction are being rebuilt from the ground up. However the industry evolves next, immerse yourself in the future by giving this episode of “The Future of Music” podcast a listen today.
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