Tuesday, April 19, 2011

LL Cool J - I Shot Ya (Remix) ft Keith Murray, Prodigy, Fat Joe, Foxy Brown

Maschine Expansions -Vintage Heat and Transistor Punch

Native Instruments has introduced its new series of Maschine Expansions: affordable high-quality download libraries for its groove production system. All expansions provide new drum kits and instruments as well as pre-programmed patterns created by expert sound designers and producers, and feature a distinctive take on a contemporary sound aesthetic or musical style. The series debuts with Vintage Heat and Transistor Punch, created by Goldbaby and Surround SFX.

Vintage Heat was created by distinguished sampling artist Goldbaby, and specializes on warm, saturated sounds with typical vintage grit. The library includes 50 charismatic kits with analog, digital and acoustic origins, complemented through 50 matching synthesizer sounds ranging from bass and leads to brass, pads and strings. All sounds in Vintage Heat have been sampled from vintage drum machines and sought-after analog synths, and have been extensively processed with Goldbaby's unique array of classic compressors, effect units and valve tape machines to achieve his special signature sound. Inventive sampling techniques, including the mapping of successive tape delay repeats to different velocity layers, further contribute to the original and distinctive character of the Vintage Heat library.

Transistor Punch takes its inspiration from contemporary European club music, and provides extremely crisp and punchy sounds for a wide range of electronic styles. Created by renowned sound designer Denis Gögdak of Surround SFX, the library contains 30 energetic drum kits as well as 50 new bass and lead sounds that integrate seamlessly with the factory library of Maschine. All sounds have been sampled from analog drum machines and synthesizers as well, to be meticulously processed with modern high-end outboard gear for an especially defined, forceful sound. Transistor Punch also adds 20 sophisticated multi-effect chains that provide instant sonic treatments for any groove, as well as a large collection of patterns by acclaimed producer Martin Buttrich.

Vintage Heat and Transistor Punch are available for download purchase in the NI Online Shop for $59 / 49 EUR each.

Tone2 WarmVerb 1.2

Tone2 are pleased to announce the 1.2 update of Warmverb, a modular multi effect plugin with routable modules and 38 types of effects.

Warmverb lets you program and combine effect chains using up to four effects per multi-effect program.

It includes a 'Randomize' button and over 150 presets giving you access to vocoders, pitch shifters, distortion, modulators and a selection of effects.

New features:
  • 64 Bit support
  • SSE2 support

Announced Improvements:
  • Slightly improved performance
  • Improved compatibility for Windows7 and Vista Systems
  • Smart installer which automatically fixes possible Win7 VST folder compatibility problems
  • Improved host compatibility
  • Important pop-ups are always displayed on top
  • Many minor improvements

  • Removed a small click after silence
  • Fixed high CPU usage with Mac demo version
  • Fixed a possible crash on Mac

Rob Papen Punch Coming in May

Rob Papen has indicated that its new Punch synthesizer is slated for an end of May release.

With Punch,  you can can use synthesis and the built-in samples to build your own drumkit. Your own samples can also be loaded into Punch to complete your kit.

Punch also features a built-in sequencer, allowing the user to handle multiple patterns. These grooves can be triggered in a live environment to build a song, or for improvisation and jamming.

Korg iElectribe Gorillaz Edition

Korg has teamed up with Gorillaz to create a new dedicated beatbox for the iPad: The iELECTRIBE Gorillaz Edition.

A limited run of 10,000 units released at a special price of US$9.99.

The iELECTRIBE is a virtual analog beatbox for the iPad. Choose a part and touch the 16-step sequencer to build a groove.

While retaining the beat-making features of the iELECTRIBE, the special Gorillaz Edition is a new machine customized to generate Gorillaz samples from their fourth album “The Fall” which allow the user to create music in a wide variety of musical styles. The iELECTRIBE Gorillaz Edition features: a special design and synthesizer engine including 128 new sounds created by Gorillaz; and 64 pre-programmed patterns by the sound team Gorillaz, Stephen Sedgwick, and Korg.

  • Sound Engine:
- PCM Synthesizer; 128 PCM Samples; 8 parts x 16 types
  • Instrument Voices (Parts):
- 8 Total: 8 PCM synthesizer parts
  • Effect Section:
- Master Effect: Assignable per step/per part
- 8 Effect Types: Short Delay, BPM Sync Delay, Grain Shifter, Reverb, Chorus/Flanger, Filter, Talking Modulator, Decimator
  • Sequencer Section:
- Patterns: 64 steps maximum per part (Motion Sequencing can memorize all knob motions in a pattern)
- Tempo: 20-300BPM (with Tap tempo and Swing function), Pattern-set function (iELECTRIBE has no “Song” function)
  • Pattern Memory:
- 160 Total: 32 preset patterns x 2 banks; 32 blank patterns x 3 banks
  • Other:
- Virtual Valve Force Tube Modeling
- Audio Export feature: Bounce Pattern, Real-Time Recording (16-Bit / 44.1 kHz Stereo WAV format)
- Publish and share songs online with the SoundCloud music distribution site
- Supports WIST (Wireless Sync-Start Technology)
- Supports “AudioCopy” function
- Supports performance and controls on an external USB-MIDI device (via the Apple iPad Camera Connection Kit)

Softube's Tube-Tech Classic Channel

"The Tube-Tech Classic Channel contains three different Tube-Tech products, the optocompressor CL 1B and two Pultec clones; the PE 1C program equalizer (the “classic” Pultec) and the ME 1B mid-range equalizer. On their own, these products immediately and easily produce a beautiful result, and combined they become an extremely powerful tool that lets you shape the sound of a track, bus or the whole mix. As well as providing these beauties as separate plug-ins, we also chose to combine them into a single powerful plug-in—the Classic Channel. The Classic Channel lets you bypass or engage any of the units, as well as change their order. By bypassing them, they won't take up any of your precious CPU, so you can might as well get used to always use the Classic Channel whenever you need just some CL 1B mojo or Pultec vibe. It makes it easier to add some eq or compression if necessary at a later stage..."

100 Artists Offer 100 Songs for Download to Raise Money for Japan

The music industry has been pitching in its fair share to help those affected by the March 11 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan.Lady Gaga and UMG both contributed to the cause, and now there’s a new musical effort on the block in the same vein: Songs of Love for Japan.
Songs of Love for Japan is a 100-song compilation packed with music from the likes of Sara Bareilles, Tori Amos, The xx, The Submarines and Ani DiFranco, as well as several other bands both signed and unsigned.
The album — which was put together by artist Cheryl B. Engelhardt and Bryce Longton from Estee Lauder — will be available until Thursday, and costs $100 for all 100 downloads. The pair hope to raise $250,000 forShelterBox, an international disaster relief charity.
If you don’t have $100, you can also buy 20 songs for $20. If you pick the $100 option, however, you could possibly score artist giveaways and other goodies. All proceeds will go to ShelterBox.
We asked some of the artists why they chose the song that they included (most tunes are rare or unreleased tracks). Check out some of their responses below:
“’Sunshower’ is a song of hope, and in a dark chapter in Japan’s history, it seems appropriate to include a song about hope. Japan is the land of the rising sun, and the sun will rise again. “ – Brian Mackey
“The reason I chose ‘Kissing Tree’ is because it’s a very happy upbeat song. I wrote it while basking out on a really fine day here in LA and I think that some of the sunlight has seeped into the final master. I know that, considering what happened in Japan, a heart-wrenching ballad is more of a natural choice, but I feel that the people of Japan need a little bit of positivity after what they’ve been through.” – Alina Smith
“Being a Louisiana native, I wrote ‘Fortune Teller’ about my beloved city of New Orleans. Pieces of the song reflect my time there before Hurricane Katrina, and then there are some emotions in there about the fear I felt not knowing where my sister and aunt were for three days after the levees broke. Just the reminder of those emotions for me during that time made me think this would be a good fit for SOLFJ.” – Hope Waits
“The song ‘Gimmie Resurrection’ was written for someone looking for a rebirth from a meaningless life. Japan has sustained not a lack of meaning but has endured unimaginable suffering and will undergo a rebirth of their own.” – John Cusimano of The Cringe
“Driving back from SXSW ’11 this year, I heard a recording of a man speaking in Japanese, with English translation superimposed, on NPR. He talked about how he had spent his week, searching for the bodies of his mother and sister, whom he could not find since the devastating earthquake and tsunami. He eventually found them, he said, where the living room used to be, as his house was completely totaled, and everything gone. Right then and there, I started to cry. I thought about how I spent my week (performing during SXSW, enjoying the nightlife, going on tour) and how this man had spent his. At this moment it clicked for me, and although I had already personally donated to the Red Cross, I knew I wanted to do something more with my music, instead of just playing it.” 

Why Does Laura Bush's Friend Want to Poison Our Water?

Dr Martin Schuepbach from Dallas, Texas, has the following plan, concerning natural gas, for the Cevennes region of France, where I live [below]:

Cevennes Region of France 

First, he will take millions of gallons of our clean mountain water, to this he will add a cocktail of up to up to 600 toxic chemicals including highly corrosive salts, carcinogens like benzene, and radioactive elements like radium.

He will then pump the noxious mixture deep into our ground.

 hydro-fracking process

When this hydrofracking process as it's called, has done its work, and natural gas has been extracted, Martin's people will dump some of this poisoned water into open pits on the site — similar, one imagines, to the one shown below:

poisoned water
The rest will be left underground where some of it is highly likely to poison our ground water.

Chinese Animal Activists Save Hundreds of Dogs From Being Eaten

Hundreds of dogs were spared being served on the dinner table in China after activists staged a 15-hour standoff to save them.
Last Friday afternoon, hundreds of dogs were on their way to Chinese restaurants when a suspicious driver swerved his car in front of the truck to stop it. He then alerted activists on his microblog, who gathered 200 strong around the truck. They rendered the vehicle immobile, jamming traffic on the highway.
After a long standoff right outside Beijing, an animal activist group managed to free the dogs by purchasing them for 115,000 yuan ($17,600). Conflicting reports differ on the number of dogs involved, but the Global Times has placed the number as high as 520.

Sadly, many of the dogs were found with collars and nametags, indicating that they may have been stolen from their beloved owners. The healthy dogs will be put up for adoption while the sick ones were sent to pet hospitals in the nation's capital. Unfortunately, it is unclear whether some of the allegedly stolen dogs will ever be reunited with their owners.
Both dog and cat meat are popular delicacies because they are believed to promote bodily warmth during the winter season. In recent years, authorities have considered putting measures in place to outlaw the practice.
Local newspapers suggested that the transporters would probably face no repercussions. Animal protection laws barely exist in China, and the truck had all the legal permits to transport the animals. Still, it's one significant victory for Fido lovers everywhere.

Playboy Mansion Illness Traced to Hot Tub Bacteria

Los Angeles County health officials say the bacteria that causes Legionnaires' disease was found in a hot tub at the Playboy Mansion where scores of people became ill after attending a fundraiser in February.
The Los Angeles Times says health officials presented their findings Friday at an annual conference at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta.
The legionella bacteria also causes a milder illness called Pontiac fever. Symptoms include fever and headache.
Many people who attended a fundraiser party at the Playboy Mansion came down with a respiratory illness after the DomainFest conference in February.
Officials contacted 439 people and found that 123 had fevers and at least one other symptom with 69 falling ill on the same day. Epidemiologists used social media to contact the conference attendees.

Luxury Designer Bijan Pakzad Dies

Bijan Pakzad gloried in offering "the costliest men's wear in the world" at a Beverly Hills showroom so exclusive that even presidents and princes had to make an appointment.
Long a highlight of the Rodeo Drive shopping district, the regally appointed House of Bijan was a natural extension of its extravagant proprietor, who died Saturday at age 67 after a stroke.
Pakzad Bijan
Known to all simply by his first name, Bijan used high prices as a selling point and lavished attention on his elite clientele, many of whom flew in on private jets for private fittings. Suits started in the neighborhood of $6,500—before customizations that might include a bullet-proof lining.
"He could do whatever the customer wanted and still make it chic," said his son, Nicolas Bijan Pakzad.
While boasting of his discretion, Bijan had stenciled on his showroom window the names of his more prominent clients—among them the five living U.S. presidents, movie stars Tom Cruise, Anthony Hopkins, and soul singer Usher. "I have six kings as customers," he boasted, as well as much of the House of Windsor.
As well as clothes cut along classic lines, Bijan sold what his son called "the Bijan show," a world of sybaritic fantasy. Amid sumptuous art and vases overflowing with lilies, one might accessorize an alligator top coat with a .38-caliber a gold-plated Colt revolver with Bijan's signature engraved on the barrel.
Born in Iran, Bijan was interested in clothes from his youth and opened his first boutique in Tehran. He spent a decade studying fashion and working as a designer in Europe. In the early 1970s, he moved to Southern California, selling Italian-manufactured clothes in a small boutique. He opened the more upscale House of Bijan in 1976.
"Appointment-only sounded ridiculous at that time," said Jimmy Delshad, a former mayor of Beverly Hills. "It helped make Rodeo Drive very sought-after."
Bijan heightened the allure by parking outside the showroom whichever of his stable of exotic cars he happened to be driving—Bentleys, Rolls, Bugattis in various candy colors including his signature yellow.
In the 1980s, Bijan struck gold with perfumes he sold at department stores around the world, making his brand available to average consumers for the first time. Scents, including a hugely popular offering in partnership with basketball star Michael Jordan, soon accounted for more than half his company's revenue.
He opened a New York showroom as opulent as the one in Beverly Hills and started appearing in idiosyncratic ads, posing with nuns in one poster and with a naked, obese woman straight out of Botero, his favorite artist, in another. His appointment book remained jammed and his prices continued to rise.
"Charge whatever you want, but make it the best," Bijan once told The Wall Street Journal.

Rich Kids Won’t Inherit as Much as They Think

In 2006, I attended a rich-kid investing camp designed to teach tomorrow’s heirs and heiresses how to manage money.
A very fancy playhouseThey were all in their 20s or early 30s and expected to inherit millions and, in some cases hundreds of millions, of dollars. Few had ever interviewed for a job. Even fewer knew what a mutual fund was. One student asked, “Where does the money for credit cards come from?” (Answer:  Dad).
Those were the pre-crisis days of course. Today, many of America’s silver spoons won’t have the same fortunes to dip into later in life because of market losses. Their parents, facing lower returns and less capital, yet refusing to give up the life to which they have been accustomed, may not plan to give them as much.
A survey from U.S. Trust of people with more than $3 million in investible assets finds that fewer than half of the parents think it is important to leave money to their children.
Among Baby Boomers especially, leaving the family fortune to the children clearly isn’t a top priority, with about 39% saying they don’t have a comprehensive estate plan. In short, the Boomers aren’t ready to give up their fortunes (if they ever will be) and they don’t think their children are ready for the cash.
Only a third say their children will be able to handle any inheritance, and nearly half say their children won’t reach a level of financial maturity to handle the family money until they are at least 35 years old.
About half haven’t told their children how much money they have. When asked why, they said the children would become lazy, make poor decisions, squander money (or fall prey to gold diggers. (And whose fault is that?)
“There is an expectation about the wealthy that they have an implicit, sacred responsibility to pass down their fortune to the next generation, and this understanding has shaped expectations about the coming wave of intergenerational wealth transfer,” said Sallie Krawcheck, president of Bank of America Global Wealth & Investment Management. “Our research, however, uncovered a distinct generational mindset that reflects changing views about what retirement means and an evolving sense of what one generation owes the next. ”
Indeed, the  twin problems of growing up with too much money and yet not getting much of an inheritance may become increasingly common among today’s children of privilege.
It is (almost) enough to make a child almost thankful he didn’t grow up rich.
Do you think today’s rich children will inherit much money? Will they be prepared?

Plane carrying first lady got too close to military C-17

A plane carrying Michelle Obama had to abort its landing on Monday after it came too close to a military C-17 cargo plane ahead of it, according to a senior administration official and the Federal Aviation Administration.
The planes -- which were both trying to land -- were three miles apart, when they are supposed to be five miles apart, the official told CNN. The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating what went wrong, as it is believed to be an air traffic controller mistake, the official said.
The White House does not believe the first lady's life was ever in danger, the senior official said.
The FAA said in a statement controllers at Andrews Air Force Base instructed an incoming Boeing 737 to perform a "go around" "because the plane did not have the required amount of separation" behind the military plane.
The FAA is investigating. "The aircraft were never in any danger," the agency said.
The landing was briefly aborted and Obama's plane had to circle, the official said.
Obama was actually on a C-40, a military version of the 737 that was part of the Air National Guard -- not the regular Air Force fleet used by VIPs at Andrews, said Maj. Michelle Lai of the 89th Airlift Wing at Andrews Air Force Base.
FAA probing mishap at Andrews AFB
The FAA did not want Obama's plane to be caught in the "jet wash," of the C-17 as it landed, Lai said. That refers to the force of the air from the back of the C-17.
"It's important to know the FAA made the right call and at no time was the first lady's life in danger," Lai said.
When the Potomac TRACON, the regional radar facility, handed off the plane to the Andrews Air Force Base tower, the planes were three miles apart, a government official told CNN. "Both facilities knew how far apart they were" at the time of the handoff, the official said. But the official declined to say why the hand-off occurred.
The TRACON could have slowed Obama's plane down or order it to turn earlier, the official said. Why that wasn't done is under investigation. But "it was a controlled situation," the government official said.
The National Transportation Safety Board said it was gathering information on the incident and will be making an 

Gold tops $1,500 for first time

Gold prices on the rise.Click chart to track the price of gold.
Gold prices topped a record $1,500 for the first time ever on Tuesday, shattering an important psychological barrier as investors seek out investments thought to be safe during times of upheaval.
Many investors see gold as the best place to park their money when there's economic or policital uncertainty, and there has been plenty of that to go around.

The price spike also comes against the backdrop of market uncertainty that has sent investors looking for an alternative to the weak U.S. dollar. And gold has been the marquee beneficiary.
On Monday, it was a dour outlook on U.S. debt that sent gold prices higher.
Standard & Poor's lowered its outlook for America's long-term debt to "negative" from "stable," based on uncertainty surrounding the nation's fiscal problems.
That's exactly the type of news that creates a flight to safe haven assets like gold.
Gold futures for June delivery hit an intraday record of $1,500.50 an ounce near midday, before retreating to settle at $1,495.10 an ounce -- also a new record.
The price of gold has tracked steadily higher in recent months, as a cavalcade of unsettling world events created uncertainty in global markets.
Since the start of the year, investors have been forced to consider the implications of a Japanese tsunami, earthquake and nuclear disaster. That's in addition to a spike in crude prices and a slew of revolts in the Middle East and North Africa.
Inflation -- which gold is often used to hedge against -- has been rising sharply in emerging economies and is becoming more of an issue in Europe.
Carlos Sanchez, director of commodities management at New York-based CPM Group, said prices could go as high as $1,550 in the next couple weeks as investors focus on political gridlock in Washington.
The next major event for the gold market is the May deadline for the government to raise the debt ceiling, Sanchez said.
On Tuesday, silver prices were also on the rise. The understudy commodity settled at $43.75 an ounce -- its highest level in three decades.
Of course, the records this week are not adjusted for inflation. Gold rose to $825.50 per ounce on Jan. 21, 1980, which is $2,211.65 in today's dollars, according to the Minneapolis Fed Calculator. To top of page