How do you learn?

In 2011 I bought an electric guitar.

In fact, my original plan was to learn the acoustic and to that end I had bought a Hello Kitty branded black guitar on an impulse while living in Tokyo.

kitty

After realising I didn’t have time to practice, it ended up (like I suspect so many other) standing in a corner collecting dust.

That is, until my wife decided to pick it up. She quickly learned the basics and watching her get better and better I decided it was time to give it another go.

At this time we were living in San Francisco, and I thought rather than buying another acoustic, I would get an electric to complement. A late evening trip to Guitar Center at Van Ness and our home was one Ibanez richer.

I_RG471_natural_flat

However, soon after buying the electric and learning just a few basic chords, I slipped via Midi into the world of synthesizers, and since then have spent the better part of the past 3 years exploring electronic music instead.

This all changed as part of our recent move, when I decided to downsize my musical equipment and get back to basics again. Now I’m struggling for the 3rd time to actually learn how to play the guitar properly.

This said, I do not regret all the time I spent learning software and synthesis as I also picked up some basic music theory along the way, and I can see how this helps in getting a better grasp of the guitar as an instrument as well.

I’m actually really excited to start this next chapter of Glitzerstrahl and I look forward to sharing the road with you all…

Please share in the comments if you have any tips for how to learn the guitar (especially the electric) faster :).

strat

My current (middle)

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Bitwig Finally gets a Release Date!

March 26! Mark the date as this is when the german outfit will release their much anticipated new DAW.

According to a press statement sent out today the date and pricing will be announced at NAMM 2014, which kicks off tomorrow in California. The boxed version will retail for USD 449.99 / 399.99 (MSRP/MAP), 329 EUR  and 41.000 YEN. The download only version will be available for a reduced price of USD 399 / 299 EUR. Also, a free demo will be made available for download on the Bitwig website from the day of release.

It’s great to see another actor enter the market and this can only lead to more innovation and competition, which ultimately will benefit the consumers. Very exciting times ahead!

Are you getting Bitwig? What’s your take?

Official Arturia MicroBrute Movie

Quick update on the Arturia Microbrute. If you go to the teaser site and click the Arturia Logo at the bottom of the site, you will be shown a full length intro movie about the synth, which is also already up on Youtube:

Screen Shot 2013-10-23 at 10.04.44 PM

Really makes you wonder what the count down is for?

Screen Shot 2013-10-23 at 10.08.27 PM

The MicroBrute from Arturia

So Arturia is about to announce ‘something BIg‘ on October 25. The internet is full of speculations but the most likely contestant is a mini version of their wildly successful MiniBrute synthesizer, dubbed the MicroBrute. The picture below has been floating around for the past 24h or so. No one knows if it’s real or not…

microbrute-image

I’m just speculating here but one detail that seems to give cred to this story is that already today the following link

http://www.arturia.com/evolution/en/products/microbrute/intro.html

appears to be a valid URL. It wont give you anything but a blank page, but any other ‘invalid’ URL on the Arturia domain actually produces an error message. The above one, which mimics the format of other Arturia product pages, actually looks like it exists.

If the new product is indeed a mini MiniBrute (MicroBrute) my guess is it will probably have the same fat and interesting sonic character, but with less variation due to fewer hands on controls and mod possibilities.

I guess we’ll have to wait and see…

Glitzerstrahl is Moving to Stockholm

I was based in Tokyo but relocated to San Francisco by my Japanese employer when I started this blog. San Francisco having such an incredibly creative atmosphere and an abundance of great music spots was a fantastic place to be for synth-head / electronic music producer. But in July 2013 my employer decided to transfer me back to Tokyo.

Tokyo is an awesome place, probably my favorite city on this planet, but for various personal reasons me and the family decided that the best thing for us to do next was probably to move to Stockholm and try our luck in my home country for a while.

I won’t go into the details, but the result is that we are moving to Sweden and will set up base in Stockholm. At the moment the rest of the family is still in Japan, waiting for visas and other technicalities, but I have gone ahead to try and set up a home and other preparations for us.

At the moment I’m living in a temporary, corporate housing solution, looking for an apartment in the Stockholm area (if you have any leads leave a comment!), while all the gear is somewhere on the Atlantic heading north (or west, or possibly east depending on how you look at it).

Therefor there won’t be that many updates for a while as I’m trying to acclimatize myself to this new environment and so forth.

In the meantime, here’s a shot of the portable studio set up in my temporary (very cold) apartment.

TempStockholmStudio

Looking forward to exploring the Scandinavian electronica scene, so if you have any tips or just want to hang out and talk synths and music let me know!