I had left her behind. I had turned my back on her. It was January of 1986, we had been close for a couple of years, and the day I left Belgium I simply walked away without giving her another thought. It took almost 25 years for me to start remembering those long ago years, to once again think about the times we had spent together. To remember how she felt to the touch, to imagine her luscious curves and the unique sound she made when my fingers would touch her just so. Yes, you guessed it: I finally dug out my old bass guitar left behind in a locked case in Antwerp a quarter century ago.
It's been two weeks now since I got her back, twenty five years since I last attempted to play bass. It's safe to say that this time around my approach is a little more methodical. I probably learned more about playing the bass in the last two weeks than I had those couple of years way back when. I still sound like crap, but I have hope that one day I might even sound halfway decent.
But this time around I was able to marry my love of music with my love of tech like never before. One of the reasons the bass guitar came back into my mind was the introduction of one of the coolest apps I have yet discovered on the iPad. Actually it is a combination of hardware and software. The hardware part is the iRig and the software is AmpliTube, both made by a company called IK Multimedia. iRig is an adapter that allows you to hook up a musical instrument to your iPad (or iPhone/iPod Touch) and get sound output. AmpliTube for iPad is a collection of software based amps, effects and other musical tools that previously would have meant carrying tons of gear around with you.
Rather than write some sort of review I shot and uploaded a short video that shows this gear in action. I have seen a lot of videos online showing mostly guitar players putting the iRig/Amplitube combi through its paces, but so far no bass players doing their "thing". I have however heard of at least one electric violin player using it as well, so I am sure we are only in the very first stages of a modest revolution in the way musicians perform.
Forgive all the screeching though. Remember, for all intents and purposes I am really still a newbie.