New technology allows musicians to jam and collaborate anytime, anywhere.
At the expense of showing my age, this writer never dreamed of jamming with other musicians thousands of miles away when I started playing music in the late 1960’s. There was no Internet, of course, and the only way to make music was to sit in the same room with other players. Well, it’s a new day with new technology that allows anyone with basic computer skills and equipment to play music in real time with others thousands of miles away: very hip and definitely cutting-edge.
eJamming is the brainchild of music business entrepreneurGail Kantor, a former backup singer for Bette Midler, producer, manager and professional fundraiser, and Alan Jay Glueckman, a screenwriter, lyricist, producer and director, with credits in movies, records, television, theatre and the Internet. These two, along with technology and entertainment professional Bill Redman, launched a prototype of eJamming in 2007, and were first recognized within the technology industry in 2009. But it wasn’t until 2010 that they conquered the problem of “lag time,” with the introduction of what they refer to as 3.0 software, featuring 16 bit 44.1 kHz live audio streaming.With this cutting edge technology in place, eJamming has become, in the words of Alan Glueckman, “The premier online community for musical collaboration, from writing, to recording, to live jam sessions, with musician members/subscribers logging in from around the globe. It sounds like the other player is in the room with you.”
Who Uses eJamming?
We asked Alan who eJamming is for and how it can benefit different users, and he responded that ejamming is for, “musicians looking to jam with old friends and band mates, or to meet new musicians they can play with. It’s for bands to rehearse, create, play and record together rather than lugging their gear to a rehearsal space, although it’s never meant to supplant a live rehearsal. eJamming is for musicians looking to form new bands by meeting musicians and auditioning them live, for teachers and students to work together online, and to provide a place for students to practice together in a virtual practice studio.”
But why not just use Skype to jam together?
“People have told me they’re not happy using Skype because of the way it feels. It’s very delayed, whereas, eJamming eliminates the latency or lag time issue. There are other technologies that purport to offer online jamming, but none offer the real time, high quality audio and lowest latency experience that eJamming offers, because we’re “peer to peer,” rather than server mediated, which means eJamming has half the latency of serverbased systems. And we offer the same high quality audio as CDs.”
Getting Started with eJamming
Simply go to www.ejamming.com/learn-more and sign up. Once your email is verified, then download and install the software. After receiving a “Welcome to eJamming” email, you will receive information on how to set up eJamming, as well as a link to tech support, www.ejammingtechsupport. com, which contains detailed information and how to perform tasks such as unblocking ports, allowing eJamming through your firewall, and configuring the audio signal stream through your computer. The eJamming support website contains pictures and step-bystep instructions how to do everything necessary to get started. The cost is only $9.95 per month after a 30-day free trial, $24.95 for three months, or only $89.95 per year. It obviously pays to go for the long haul.
And Musicians Said…
Dustin Bogue of the group Brasher/Bogue is a loyal eJamming participant.
“Playing guitar is in a lot of ways a lot like having sex…Granted, it’s fun even if you’re flying solo, but it doesn’t compare to doing it with other people!
“A musician at any level will readily tell you, playing guitar is a lot more fun when you are accompanied by another picker. You can share songs, theories, chords, licks, stories, ideas, etc, with each other. That is how we grow. It isn’t always easy to get together with other players, and a lot of people don’t have a large circle of friends to call on if they have the urge to jam. Quite simply, eJamming makes it possible.
“The day I found eJamming, I knew it was going to change things for us in a big way. Since Andy (Brasher) and I first started writing and performing together, our two biggest obstacles have been time and distance: not enough time and too many miles between us. eJamming has literally bridged the gap on both accounts. Each time we get together to write online, we are just amazed that we finally have this tool. We write and rehearse probably three to four times as often as we did before we found eJamming.”
Andy Brasher chimed in, “As a writing/touring musician, balancing home life and work life can be a challenge. Especially if you’re like me, and you live in one state and most of your musical accomplices live in another. Dustin and I have been making music together, writing and recording since 2007. Until we discovered eJamming, getting together consisted of taking turns driving two hundred miles and spending a few days away from home. This could be very taxing. Now that we’re on eJamming, we can write, play, or record at a moment’s notice without having to dedicate gas money and a couple hours on the road in order to create together. We are able to work more often and from the comfort of our own homes. The control panel is super easy to use, and the setup was simple. With tech support’s help, we were up and running that day. “
And Now, Get Ready For…
It won’t be long before the company offers eJamming STUDiiO ®, which will integrate live video along with audio, and ejamming TEACH ® for students and teachers, featuring enlarged video, notation, plus other teaching tools. And finally, eJamming JAMCASTLE ®, where musicians anywhere in the world can use eJamming STUDiiO ® as a live performance capture device and stream those performances live to smartphones, Surface tablets, computers and iPads, for fan access everywhere in the world, 24/7. All these developments are on the verge of reality, according to Alan Gleuckman.
By Bob Cianci