Using the Akai MPK Mini MKII for live performance in Ableton Live

YouTuber/Musician, Teatro, put together this awesome tutorial on how he uses his MPK Mini II in Ableton Live. I have one of these myself and really found his videos inspiring and helpful. The MPK Mini MkII is a really nice little controller that is very affordable, and if you map controls intelligently, it’s quite capable for live performance.

Above is the tutorial, then below is the actual performance of he’s talking about in the tutorial. Great stuff!

If you want to pick up an MPK Mini Mkii for yourself you can get one with the link below from Amazon.

Tortoise plays TNT in full at Art Institute of Chicago 21st anniversary

I absolutely love Tortoise, and TNT is nothing short of a masterpiece of an LP. Pitchfork just posted this live video of them performing the entire album in full at the Art Institute of Chicago and it is glorious.

Sound quality is absolutely excellent, and video production quality is equally as great. I saw them way back in the 1990s, and it makes me very happy to see them performing this material today. This was a great way to start my morning.

TNT has also recently been reissued on vinly (I already got a copy) but you can pick one up with the link below 🙂

Yamaha releases super lightweight aluminium drum hardware!

Many years ago (1990s) I remember a company making some aluminium hardware similar to this, I think it was Gibraltor, I never had some, but I always remembered thinking it was an awesome idea. Then they seemed to disappear and I never saw them again, well until now!

Yamaha has released this incredible hardware pack called Crosstown that is insanely lightweight, but insanely sturdy. Not only that, the design gives them a pretty interesting look.

Why is this idea so good? Well as any drummer knows, stands are HEAVY! If you’re playing gigs, and travelling around, the last thing you want to do is lug a 100lb hardware case up 4 flights of stairs for a gig in NYC. I actually use lightweight flat based stands by Ludwig, and yes they’re light, but not nearly as heavy duty as these, and actually not even as light since they’re still made of metal alloy. The total weight of the Yamaha Crosstown Hardware Pack is only 17lbs in the case!

Very… very cool. Get some with the link below!

‘Low Volume’ cymbals and drums suck, build your own e-drums instead

Okay hear me out here before you get tiggered, but I really think this trend of the past couple of years of “low volume” cymbals is really stupid. Yes yes, I get that some people (including me) live in small apartments with neighbors all around who really will not like you banging on full volume drums, but if the option is playing something that looks like a drumset, but sounds like awful garbage, like the example above, I’d rather just play guitar.

I started playing drums when I was 10 years old, and as a kid (and as an adult), the power, loudness, resonance, and tones of the drums, all are part of why I loved playing them so much. If I had something that sounded like cardboard boxes and baking pans, I never would have wanted to play them. So what can you do?

Well, what I do is rent a small room about 10 blocks away from my house in an industrial neighborhood for my drums, but I realize this option isn’t realistic for everyone, so option 2 is build your own electronic drum set. Even though I kinda hate electronic drums too, but at least they’re better than what you hear above. I built my own electronic kit back in 2009, and it wasn’t that difficult, here’s some  pics:

I’ve also made a playlist of youtubers who made some pretty awesome ones:

Or… you can just buy one (which is probably what I’d do now, haha.


E-kits have gotten a lot cheaper and better in recent years. But honestly, I would rather play any of the above than Low Volume cymbals with silent heads. At this point you’re just hitting drum shaped objects that sound like nothing. At least with electronic drums you can record them and have endless options of sounds. Plus they’re STILL QUIETER than LV cymbals and drums.

Anyway, I know this was a bit of a rant, but just had to get it out there ;P

Every Demonic Sweaters live YouTube performance in one playlist

I just released a new live performance video the other day of me playing drums along with a song I made in Milkytracker. This is not the first video like this I’ve made, in fact I now have 11 or so videos of my playing along to chip trackers with live drums.

In addition to that, I’ve done several other types of performances on YouTube over the years, and have been adding them to this playlist above over time. I thought I would post it here again since it has recently been updated.

Private drum, guitar, or software lessons on Skype or Discord:
Skype: justin.robert87
Discord: demonicsweaters#6261 

Demonic Sweaters T-Shirt http://bit.ly/2TcXIBe

You can support my channel on Patreon:
https://www.patreon.com/demonicsweaters  

My Music: https://anthillrecordings.bandcamp.com
Website: http://demonicsweaters.com
Podcast https://demonicsweaterspodcast.blogspot.com 

Get your music on all the streaming services for no charge up front: https://routenote.com/referral/2f72830b 

My Gear 

Cameras:
Canon SL2
US – https://amzn.to/2sTmR5e
UK – https://amzn.to/2T3X84O
Canon SX40hs
US – https://amzn.to/2UvgeBJ
UK – https://amzn.to/2Ct1P2L

Drum Set:
Tama Imperialstar 
US – https://amzn.to/2CUaw5m
UK – https://amzn.to/2F12Zmg

Heads:
Aquarian Studio X
US – https://amzn.to/2UqHAJm
UK – https://amzn.to/2TBbuhZ

Sticks:
Aquarian X-10 5Bs
US – https://amzn.to/2T3x1Pn
UK – https://amzn.to/2TybUps

Guitars:
Epiphone Les Paul Studio
US – https://amzn.to/2Gdp5V8
UK – https://amzn.to/2HfieMd
Ibanez GRX20
US – https://amzn.to/2BG7GRy
UK – https://amzn.to/2T3YzQK
Jackson RR Minion
US – https://amzn.to/2Ncppox
UK – https://amzn.to/2CkMP6G 

Midi Controllers:
Midiplus Classic 49
US – https://amzn.to/2WvdJ4p
UK – https://amzn.to/2HiBbNM
Akai MPK Mini
US – https://amzn.to/2tqJlL8
UK – https://amzn.to/2Tzz9zt
Akai MPD24
US – https://amzn.to/2XeaRcH
UK – https://amzn.to/2O2tUCr

Computer:
Dell Inspiron 5576
US – https://amzn.to/2Gdp5V8
UK – https://amzn.to/2Hj9p3V

Audio Interface:
Behringer UMC404HD
US – https://amzn.to/2WuM2Zk
UK – https://amzn.to/2ChWcV0

Mics:
Kick – CAD KBM412
US – https://amzn.to/2FZWfbq
UK – https://amzn.to/2HflxD7
Snare – Audio Technica ATM650
US – https://amzn.to/2FZWfbq
UK – https://amzn.to/2TvWB0q
Overheads – Nady RSM-5
US – https://amzn.to/2Usy4FG (this is an rsm-4, amazon no longer sells the 5)
UK – https://amzn.to/2XUbTL8 (ribbon mics)
toms – Heimu Big Drum Mic
US – https://amzn.to/2TG1uV2