Soundhalo is a brand new service for taking live concert video recordings and transforming them into mixed single song videos for immediate sale. It’s an interesting hybrid that’s currently being offered as an Android app that allows purchases during the live show. DRM-free concert files are then available for viewing on any device. Sounds like a potential winner on impulse buys if Soundhalo can pull off some formidable challenges.
Soundhalo launched in beta at a performance late last week by Alt-J. People reviewing the technology seem impressed.
Chris Welch, writing for The Verge, described the process:
“Minutes after a song’s conclusion, a production team pairs video with audio pulled directly from the soundboard. Everything’s properly mastered before the final product is uploaded to the cloud, so you won’t have to worry about dealing with a harsh audio mix.”
My understanding is that audio/video will be provided via the band and venue. Soundhalo will quickly turn the individual videos around and fans can preview the videos via their smartphones and decide to purchase them individually.
Alt-J’s songs went for around $1.50 each with the whole 16-song set being purchased for $9.00. Apparently the service automatically provides the whole set when you purchase enough individual tracks to cover the full-set price.
Nick Hide at CNET UK had some concerns about the scalability of Soundhalo:
“‘The Soundhalo production team take video and audio feeds directly from the venue,’ the startup explains, ‘and utilizing the fastest broadcast connectivity, delivers those files to the Soundhalo studio where mixing, mastering and grading take place by the expert ears and eyes of world class mastering engineers.’”
Without some kind of algorithmic solution, making each individual track quickly available seems really difficult. And the mobile app description does make it sound quick:
“Soundhalo is an evolutionary new platform that allows music lovers to buy, share and own artist endorsed live video and audio recordings as it happens. Fans can now purchase and download the actual performance as it unfolds, whether they are at the gig or on the other side of the globe.”
The focus on a mobile app is interesting given that you then download DRM-free MP4 files that can be viewed on any device. And you don’t even have to be at the show if you have the app.
Soundhalo is launching with an emphasis on being closely tied to individual shows and the possiblity of impulse buys during the show.
Beyond that it’s a live video production and digital sales platform accessible via an Android app. So that emphasis makes quick turnaround particularly important in making the whole thing work. If they can pull that off, Soundhalo potentially becomes quite powerful.
Source: Hypebot (by Clyde Smith)
You no longer have to be Ryan Seacrest, Ne-Yo or Jason Mraz to play with Twitter’s new music discovery app. After testing the app with music artists and influencers, Twitter #Music will be available starting today at https://music.twitter.com and as a separate app for the iPhone through the App Store.
So what does the service do? Well, it does what you might expect from a music app from Twitter — it helps you find music that’s popular on Twitter and music based on the bands you follow. The app is centered around four pages or tabs, which you can swipe through to access.
The Popular page shows you new music that’s trending across Twitter while the Emerging tab shows “hidden talent found in tweets.” While those two parts feed you information about what the collective Twitterverse is jamming to, the last two focus on who you follow and your personal music taste.
The Suggested tab shows artists you might like based on the artists you follow on the service and who they follow. And finally the #NowPlaying tab shows songs your friends are listening to or tweeting about. For instance, if your friend tweets that they are listening to a song by Justin Bieber, that song will show up on that page.
The iPhone app, which “Good Morning America” got an exclusive early look at, has a slick and polished design. All the pages have a grid made up of artists and songs; tap one of those and the song will start playing along with a fun spinning CD animation in the bottom left corner. Tap on that and you get an enlarged CD — you can drag your finger around the CD to fast forward or rewind within that song.
And the fact that you don’t have to leave the app to listen might be one of the best parts. Twitter has integrated current music services like Rdio, Spotify and iTunes to allow you to play the songs right through the app or webpage. With iTunes, you will only hear a preview, but with Rdio and Spotify, users can log in with their accounts to hear the full tracks. Twitter says it will continue to work to add additional music providers to the app.
Twitter put artists and bands at the center of the experience. You can go to artist’s Twitter profile pages within the app and see what artists they follow and listen to. As Twitter says, it’s like getting recommendations from your friends, except they happen to be music superstars. You can search for artists through the search field and play a selection of songs from them.
Twitter announced last week that it had acquired “We Are Hunted,” a music recommendation and streaming company based in Australia. Twitter also released Vine, a dedicated six-second video app, in January.
“There are times when you need a single-purpose driven knife in the kitchen and there are times when you are out camping and you want a Swiss Army knife. We have different apps for different purposes,” Michael Sippey, Twitter’s VP of product, said earlier this week at the “All Things D: Dive into Mobile” conference when asked about the different apps Twitter has been releasing. Last week Facebook released Facebook Home for select Android phones. Home provides a Facebook experience deeper than an app.
The Twitter #Music app will be out later today in the Apple App Store; there is no Android app yet.
Source: ABC News (by Joanna Stern)
Your music everywhere. That’s the focus at Amazon Digital Music these days. Much like the “TV Everywhere” concept being pushed by cable and satellite services, “your music everywhere” is what Amazon is hoping will resonate with its customer base, which straddles both the digital and physical music markets. As consumers move to digital, Amazon is trying to ease their transition, and the company has resisted the urge to double-dip into customers’ pockets by not making them repurchase already-owned music, potentially in favor of luring them with subscriptions.
“The ‘your’ in ‘your music everywhere’ is important,” said Steve Boom, vice president of Worldwide Digital Music at Amazon, in a sit-down with L.A. Biz. The “your” emphasizes the ownership aspect of the music, which Boom noted is an important distinction given the increase in streaming services like Pandora and Spotify.
Boom is currently overseeing Amazon’s digital music group, which includes Amazon MP3 and Amazon Cloud Player. He has more than 15 years of experience in building global businesses and teams with a background in product management, engineering, sales, business development, marketing and operations. He was previously a senior vice president at Yahoo!, spending more than 10 years overseeing the company’s mobile business on a global scale.
The Verge recently reported that Amazon is in talks with record labels for a subscription service, but no formal announcement has been made. While all the heat has been on digital, Amazon still does a robust business selling CDs. Its largest markets are the U.S., Japan, U.K., France, Germany, Spain and Italy, and a full 70 percent-80 percent of the market in Japan and Germany is still in physical music sales.
The Galaxy Nexus and Ice Cream Sandwich are nearly upon us, and one feature that’s widely expected to be introduced alongside their release is a Google Music store. The current beta of Google Music functions mostly as a dumb music locker in the cloud, but there’s already been evidence that Google’s planning to expand its functionality and turn it into an actual store. This weekend has seen more kindling added to that fire with a set of purported screenshots from that very Google Music store.
Claimed to have been obtained using an HTC Inspire 4G over in Venezuela, these screen grabs provide a hint of what the eventual store experience might be like. The most apparent highlight is a “Free Song of the Day” spot that does what its name commands, while there’s also mention of Android Market and Google Music working “hand-in-hand,” most likely referring to the purchase of music. So the way things are shaping up, the Android Market looks likely to go the way of iTunes in being the place to get both your apps and music. Per-track pricing varies, with $1.29 and $0.99 prices visible, and full album cost will also depend on popularity, it seems. The ability to purchase anything hasn’t yet been enabled, we’re told, but Google’s “These Go to Eleven” event on the 16th will very likely flip that switch while filling in any remaining gaps in our knowledge.
Article originally appeared on The Verge (http://www.theverge.com) and was written by Vlad Savov.
Last month The Vaccines released what was claimed to be the first music video made up of pics shared via the Instagram iPhone app. Being the first carries a lot of weight when you can support that claim and, from what I can tell, that seems to be the case. It also serves as yet another example of how to draw fans together to create content that can then be professionally edited into a form that gets a big response.
The Vaccines and team put out a call for photos to use in a music video for the single “Wetsuit” a few months back.
They set up a dedicated website with the following simple instructions:
1. Download Instagr.am to your iPhone for free
2. Use it to take photos at festivals. Bands, tents, fields, mud, thrills, spills, the lot!
3. Tag them with #VACCINESVIDEO when you post. We’ll do the rest. Easy
They ended up with 2433 tagged photos leading to a video focused on fans and their environment that has received almost 700,000 views on YouTube.
While they got quite a bit of media coverage, fan comments on spots like YouTube seem to be more to the point:
“I want all these people to be my friends.”
“SUCH A COOL VIDEO I WANT TO BE IN IT!”
“I want to go back to Reading Festival so much looking at this. Summer 2011 was perfect!”
“I literally want to be friends with them and have their clothes and be there with them :|”
“basically my kind of crowd
my kind of life
my kind of music”
Sure, there are other comments, but I find the ones showing an identification between folks who wish they were there and folks who were there to be the most interesting indicators of the video being part of the process of building a cohesive, self-identified fanbase.
As Adweek’s David Kiefaber points out:
“This is one of those situations where pop culture does what anonymous fans have been doing for years — this is just a well-edited version of the sort of photo slideshow someone would put together after graduating from college.”
And that’s the beauty of the Wetsuit video. The Vaccines take an approach seen in fan-made music videos for other bands, connect it to a still fresh mobile service, get their fans involved and end up with a relatively low-budget music video that gets lots of press, a claim to being first and great fan response.
It’s an excellent example of how new tech connected to well-established practices and desires can get a great deal of mileage out of a simple idea.
GarageBand, the popular music-making application for the Mac desktop operating system and the iPad, is now available for the iPhone and the iPod Touch, Apple has announced.
GarageBand, which was released along with iMovie for the iPad in March of this year, has been scaled down in size to fit the smaller screens of the iPhone and iPod Touch and is selling for $4.99 in the App Store.
According to TechCrunch, Apple concurrently let out Version 1.1 of GarageBand for iPad, with features that will be available across all iOS devices, including custom chords for Smart Instruments and new time signatures like 3/4 and 6/8.
It’s early, but the first reviews are already out from Wired and MacWorld. Both had good things to say about the mini-GarageBand, with Wired calling it “a welcome addition to any mildly creative person’s iPhone or iPod touch.”
The GarageBand app is available here for download for iPhone 3GS and up, iPod Touch and the iPad in the App Store.
Check out screenshots of the scaled-down GarageBand app for iPhone (below).
Article originally appeared on The Huffington Post (http://www.huffingtonpost.com) and was written by Jason Gilbert.
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