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Gigbag: December 2004

M-Audio FireWire 1814

The latest audio interface from M-Audio, the 1814, connects to a computer via high-bandwidth FireWire and also offers ADAT Lightpipe connectivity. The 1814 gets its name from having 18 inputs and 14 outputs. The two main analog inputs feature XLR/phono hybrid jacks and mike/instrument preamps with gain controls, phantom power and pads. Two headphone amplifiers are also onboard and their output mixes can be individually assigned via software.

JodyJazz HR*

JodyJazz’s new hard rubber mouthpieces for alto and tenor sax go for the sound, look and feel of vintage jazz mouthpieces. Available in a variety of facings and opening sizes, the mouthpieces are faced on a special facing machine and then hand finished. HR* alto models are based on the Meyer mouthpiece but have a bit more projection and brightness. The tenor HR* is modeled after the Otto Link but has a more free-blowing feel.

D’Addario ProSteels

For bass players searching for strings that sound bright as a shining star but don’t bite like a rabid dog, D’Addario offers ProSteels. These stainless-steel strings have a brilliant, yet sweet, high end and a deep, focused bottom, and put out a round, sustaining tone. The secret is a specialized alloy that D’Addario spent years sourcing, testing and validating. ProSteels are available in four-string sets in a variety of gauges.

Roland DB-60

This little timekeeper can kick out a click track in a number of musical styles. Along with the standard functions of a metronome, Roland’s DB-60 provides a menu of rhythmic patterns and a note-mixing feature to create rhythms that match the feel and style of your music. And it can handle time signatures of up to 17 beats per measure. The DB-60 also comes with a memory function for storing different tempos, a loop function and tuner.

Zoom MRS-8

Zoom’s newest portable desktop 8-track carries an array of onboard instrument, vocal and mastering effects, with extensive digital-editing capabilities. It’s bigger than it seems, as each track features 10 virtual tracks for storing multiple takes, and it also includes built-in programmable drum and bass sounds. Smaller than a laptop computer, the MRS-80 operates on either four AA batteries or AC power.

Hal Leonard Jazz Play-Along Series

With books focusing on the works of masters like Basie, Bird, Coltrane, Ellington and Davis, Hal Leonard’s Jazz Play- Along Series feature lead sheets plus a CD containing melody cues and splittrack choices for a variety of practice methods. The backing tracks are nicely played by professional musicians-no MIDI programming here-and each song contains additional chorus for practicing solos. The series also includes non-artistspecific books on bebop, blues and even holiday tunes.

Originally Published