Ready to gig with yet ?

#1

Hi,

Have been keeping one eye on the BeatBuddy for a little while and think it will make a great addition to the sound of our Acoustic Duo.

I understand the product is still relativly new and therefore potential early issues however cannot commit to purchasing such a item until i can be sure it will do exactly what it says on the tin.

Without wanting to trawl through all the pages of early issue questions and complaints i am asking for a definite answer as to whether the product at this stage of development will work for us and be 100% reliable for us in a live situation, i would be using a windows laptop.

I need to know that i can put in drum patterns on the laptop for approx 30-40 songs, save them accordingly and set them up on the BeatBuddy to our set list and know that it will work as intended,

Hoping for a big “yes” answer here but being realistic in expectations,

Thank you,

Martyn

#2

I am not a marketing guy and I am not working for Singular Sound atm, so I won’t lure you into buying BeatBuddy.

From my own experience, I use a Windows standalone computer, Guitar Pro 5.2 for editing MIDI files and use drum sets that came shipped with my BeatBuddy. That has me pretty covered.

BBManager is pretty suitable for me to compile a set of BeatBuddy songs that my pedal will play. Yes, there are issues with BBManager itself, but if you are used to pressing Ctrl+S pretty often, you will hardly ever run into any of them.

For some users (who probably run it on their pocket calculators), BBManager sounds distorted. However this is never the case with the pedal itself even for those users. As soon as they upload their songs to the pedal, the songs will sound amazing.

BeatBuddy may not be cheap, but I actually bought it for my looper, Boomerang III. Without MIDI sync from BeatBuddy it was extremely hard and frustrating for me to record a proper loop. But now, these two devices have me almost covered - I feel like a real one man band! I am really pleased with my devices, even despite I play pretty poorly - they rescue me!

#3

I can speak from real-life experience, also as half of a mostly acoustic duo, it fits the bill nicely and adds a lot of energy to the music. However, here are the issues you will run into:

  1. You will need a monitor with the drum track very accentuated.
    When you are playing and singing and it’s a noisy room it’s imperative that you still hear the beat above all else (we all accelerate when the song’s energy picks up, it just happens). Once nice feature is that if the venue can’t accommodate a monitor, the headphone out on the pedal can be used to feed a powered monitor. There are some cool near-field mic-stand mounted ones that would be perfect for this.

  2. You will need to practice with the pedal.
    Working with transitions isn’t as easy as it seems in the demo videos. In the real world, you are playing and singing and it’s late at night in a bustling room and maybe you’ve had a beer or two and you have to hold your foot down at time and just long enough to trigger a transition but not too long to cause a transition fill to repeat.
    (I have been letting the BB engineers understand the challenges here and hopefully they’ll add options to simplify this)

  3. You will probably want document your drum patterns and have that in front of you while you are performing.
    Once you have a couple hundred songs worked up, you might not remember the details of each: does this song have a pre-chorus rhythm change, is there a separate post-chorus rhythm pattern before you go back to the verse pattern, is there a bridge rhythm pattern, etc, etc, etc. It’s been my experience that until you pay attention to a drum part, you might not realize how many changes there are.
    I, like many performers with very large lists of songs to draw from, have lyrics printed up so I just added the BB section into my lyrics sheets

  4. You absolutely will want a secondary foot pedal, not so much to trigger accents, but for the pause feature. It’s not just for breaks in songs, it’s there to save you should things go off the rails :slight_smile:

#4

I’ve been “live” now two weeks in a row. The above is stated correctly in my opinion. The BB has proven to be reliable in “live” settings once you as the user are familiar with it’s strengths and weakness and also once you have figured out how to use it fluently.

PD

#5

Hi Martyn.

I have a Mac and I run the software using Winebottler. I have had no problems. So that being said, I can modify beats, tempos and chop up the songs as I see fit.

All you need to know about it being gig ready, is pretty much what Charles Spencer wrote. He has hit the nail on the head with his advice and I wholeheartedly agree with his advice about having a loud monitor mix to hear the beat above all else. As he says, practice with it, and be comfortable. I use it as part of a duo with Acoustic guitars and we get on great with it. Once you feel in control of your environment, your setup, your sound, your gear, you will have no problems. Just practice with it and all will be good!!!

#6

Since my response and another “disappeared,” I’ll repeat that the BB is NOT gig ready if you own a Mac. Hopefully we’ll have the Mac manager software yet in 2014. Should be great once that’s done.

You might order the pedal now and get used to the operation and find “songs” on the BB that go with songs you play. That way you’ll be ready to go when the manager software is done.

#7

Hi Martyn,

Yes, the BeatBuddy is gig ready and gig worthy.
Another note I will add is that there are some GREAT customization options including intro/NoIntro and taptempo on a pedal.
I’ve used it successfully in a live situation twice since i received it about three weeks ago. As with anything, practice.

You may want a more subtle acoustic drum set, but that’s easily done.

There are some beefs, like no dedicated mac content management software, and the current version of the software is not accessible to blind users, but, for the majority of users, the BB management software is usable.

I recommend a purchase. You will not be disappointed.

#8

The original poster explicitly asked to not clutter his own thread with off topic. A fast cleanup helped.

#9

Well I have just taken the plunge and ordered a BeatBuddy.

I play in a acoustic duo in the UK and really think this will enhance our sound and take us to the next level playing live.

We released a single on iTunes a few months ago (excluding USA markets) the link being,

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/id880156316 which is a cover of “Over the Rainbow” and was a exercise for us In getting music out there and now we know the procedure we are already in the studio working on a acoustic album and will be interesting to see if the BeatBuddy can be used in the studio as a alternative to hiring a drummer and perhaps save us a few ££ as well.

Will keep you posted and look forward to the delivery,

Regards,

Martyn

#10

I’ve been using mine onstage, an Alesis drum machine, Win laptop through a Roland 1080 midi sequencer, & a few BT’s .
Switching from a guitar player to a bass player (human) last year, I’m weening myself off the laptop & Alesis to jam with him more,
so we can stretch out of the confines of 3 min songs (extra solo when dancers,)
I’m enjoying the adds of BB contributors .sng files …
Bad moon rising, Wagon wheel, Race is on, Purple Haze Folsom prison, Hard to handle .etc
Hopefully they will add their own midi editor to make it easier to make songs,
it’s a frustrating learning curve.
I thought i’d be contributing songs by now…at least using my own .

Am I happy I own one … Yes!