Take Your Surround Sound For A Spin While Travelling

imagesTravelling long distances on the road becomes one of the biggest parts of a band’s life. The fun and excitement of performing in front of big crowds are the reason why you bite the travelling bullet, but it sometimes takes it’s toll. Travelling long distances can get very frustrating and tiring, especially when you are travelling on land as it takes you even longer to reach your destination. Entertainment on the road is the most important thing and what better entertainment is there for a band than surround sound music. Like they say, “time flies when you’re having fun”.

Add Some Audio To Your Car

Before deciding what sound would be best in your vehicle used for you long distance travelling, it may be beneficial to read through numerous car stereo reviews. In travelling times, where you spend a large portion of your life on the road and in traffic, music and radio can undoubtedly ease the tension of this sometimes horrifying activity. Long road trips would also not be the same if they were not accompanied by a beautiful self-selected soundtrack. It is therefore vital to put some thought into your choice of system, as it will be with you through some very stressful and highly memorable times. It is always a good idea to ask a professional for their advice before deciding on what to buy. But this is not the only route you can take. Luckily, there are many car stereo reviews available both online and in magazines, which will definitely aid you in your choice.

Look At The Online Reviews

If you are having a look at an online review, it is important to identify what the writer’s objective is. Is the article just trying to sell you a product? If this is the case, you will obviously get a rather biased opinion on the system. Is it an expert’s opinion? Although it is always good to get an expert’s point of view, it also can be a good idea to see what the man on the street has to say about their experience with the product.

Audio Installation

The next step to look at with regards to your purchase are what exactly your options in installing your system. Factory-installed systems will definitely be reliable and produce good output. However, many audio enthusiasts prefer to tailor-make their system to their specific desires. There are a lot of fun extras that can be added to your vehicle’s audio system. While all the conventional aspects, such as the perfect speakers and amplifiers, will ensure the quality of your sound, some other exciting features have been added to some models. Some even come complete with Bluetooth wireless. This will ensure a safer driving experience, as you will now have a hands-free kit for your cell phone.

Some Of The Features

Valor has introduced a state of the art product to the market. The SD 906W offers a rather impressive list of features. Format is no problem for this machine. You can play audio CDs, DVDs, as well as discs which have MP3 and WMA files stored on them. An iPod can be plugged into the system so that you can enjoy your favorite music on your new car speakers. Also, it comes complete with Bluetooth. All of this can be conveniently operated from the retractable touch screen. In many car stereo reviews, this product has been praised for its quality and ingenuity.

Sony has always been a leader in providing sound to homes and vehicles alike. They have also stepped up to the plate in terms of offering consumers equipment with Bluetooth capabilities, as well as maintaining the quality that is synonymous with the brand name.

Whether you are an all-out audio enthusiast, or a band travelling long distances on the road, some thought should be given as to what product will suit your needs and make your trip worth while. With the amount of car stereo reviews available, you can empower yourself as a consumer to make the choice that it right for you. After all, you want to stay entertained on the road, so make it count.

Relax and Hang Like a Bat

As a band, we spend a lot of hours on a bus, in cars, on planes and trains. Simply put, we travel a lot and to be honest we actually slouch around quite a bit between gigs as well. We’ve had to find constructive ways to keep ourselves in shape and take care of our bodies (when we’re not nourishing it with frosty adult beverages!) while on the road. Regular exercise and yoga has been a favorite for a long time abut recently we actually bought a inversion table which we take with us wherever we can. this actually started with Jennifer (our bass guitar player) buying a pair of inversion shoes and hanging from the doors in or hotels like a bat on a regular basis!

ironman It didn’t take long before we all got pretty hooked on the therapeutic effcts of hanging upside down. We got an Ironman Gravity 4000 inversion table and simply love our our new toy! Here are some things we’ve learned about these nifty devices.

Inversion table exercises are characterized by moderate forms of stretching to strengthen the body’s core muscles. Stronger and flexible muscles are less vulnerable to injuries and strains that can aggravate neck and back pains. Building up your muscles also improves posture. In addition, inversion table exercises boost a healthy person’s level of fitness and prevent stress from forming up in the joints and muscles. There are as always pros and cons though.

In preparing yourself for inversion table exercises, make sure that your table is locked before proceeding with your routine. It is also important to follow the instructions carefully since one wrong move can have negative effects on your muscles. In addition, begin with small, easy steps to allow your body to adjust. Remember to not attempt starting another form of exercise until you are completely comfortable with your current routine. Gentle stretching movements are initially done to warm up your body. Normally, you extend your arms over your head, carefully extending your body into full stretch. After that, attempt to slightly arch your back. Do it on one side of your body, and then repeat the stretch on the body’s other side. As you become comfortable with the simple movements, you may begin with the advanced and more complicated inversion exercises like sit-ups, crunches, back extensions, and squats.

It’s good for the Spine

When doing the exercises, can inversion tables decompress the spine? Clinical studies of inversion tables published in reputable medical journals have confirmed that inversion can decompress the spine and can bring relief to back pains, leg pains, and sciatica. Hanging upside down can take off the pressure of the discs in your spine, which in turn relieves pain in the back. If you are suffering from these pains, in time, you will be able to work up to doing your stretching routines to strengthen your back, stomach, and legs.

As a beginner, remember to tilt the inversion table at 20 – 30 degrees angle only. Then start doing your regular routines. As you become more comfortable with the position, adjust your tilt until you can invert at 90 degrees, otherwise known as the expert level.

Herniated Discs

For patients with herniated disc pain, inversion therapy allows gravity to help align the body naturally. Since herniated disc is a result of excess pressure, removing this pressure from the disc is a good start to solving the problem. Exercises and therapies on the inversion table are proven methods to alleviate pressure using gravity to decompress the spinal disc. Moreover, inversion exercises stimulate blood circulation to the damaged disc, thus promoting faster healing.

Inversion table exercises are performed by thousands of people to help them relieve the pressure from their back. Inversion table alone can help users relieve themselves from back pain temporarily. In conjunction with an exercise program, patients can extend and improve on the benefits of using the inversion table. For maximum security, use a spotter while using the table. This can help avoid the risk of possible accidents if you experience a medical emergency while suspended upside down.

For more information and some great inversion table reviews go visit InversionZone.com

Disturbin’ The Peace With My New Noisebag!

It’s no secret that we love our music and we love playing it out loud – which is why we’re on the road all the time playing gigs near you so look out for our ads and come support us! Whenever we play a gig in a new town we make a point of spending some time in town, meeting the locals and spreading the word bout our shows. We’ve tried all kinds of promotional ideas to get our music out there including walking the streets with a boom box on the shoulder, playing in parks for free and crashing the local karaoke night!

We recently found a novel upgrade to the concept of walking with a boom box through the streets. The UK based company Noisebags recently launched a new backpack, with a fully integrated music system and calling it Noisebags!

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Great looking bag – even if it wasn’t for the cool music integration don’t you agree?

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Their boom bag can be connected to any iPhone, iPod, MP3 and MP4 player via a 3.5mm audio jack. It incorporates an amplifier that needs 4 AA batteries. These are great looking bags with the speakers and music controls integrated into the shoulder straps.

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The speakers and controls are integrated into the shoulder-straps – easy to reach and obscured to let rip with some great beats.

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Small but effective little amplifier runs on 4 AA batteries. Remember to buy rechargeables!

This is one of the coolest pieces of kit I’ve bought in a while from a great company what used tag-lines like: “Forget earphones. Play it out loud!” – and we completely agree! The bags come in some funky colors like Uni Pink, True Blue and the awesome Nuclear Orange. Our personal favorite the Cam O however takes it queue from modern military backpacks with a good looking and hip camouflage motive.If you’re in the market for a new backpack and you love music, take a look at these packs, very affordable, well-made and worth every penny!

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Weekly Tip – How to Tune Your Electric Guitar

One of the most annoying things when learning to play any electric guitar is that no matter what you do nothing ever sounds any good. You get frustrated thinking that you may never be able to play the way you want to play.

While it’s true that it learning to play an electric guitar does have a definite learning curve to it, it is not impossible to master. But what most beginners and truthfully some guitarists who should know better but forget is that most of the time the reason you sound bad is because your guitar is not in tune.

Standard tuning for 6 string guitar

So How Often Should You Tune an Electric Guitar?

In order to have the best playing experience, you really should tune up your guitar every single time before you play. Yes, every time. Guitars, no matter how expensive eventually go out of tune. And some cheaper models will go out of tune fairly quickly. If you make sure your electric guitar is in the proper tune every time you play, you may be pleasantly surprised at how much better you sound.

Another thing to bare in mind that act of doing your “Guitar God” impersonation, i.e. playing or practicing with any guitar for just a few hours can easily slip it out of tune. So you basically always have to be aware of the guitar and stop and re-tune when necessary.

Now tuning you guitar need not become a time consuming burden. In fact if done right it will only take you a few minutes at first. And the longer you play the faster you can tune your electric guitar on the play.

In fact master musicians can tune their guitars so fast that they can do even while performing in a concert, without anyone really noticing them missing a beat. A professional can get a guitar back into tune in 30 seconds or less with the sound being clear in all the electric guitar pickups.

You will need to tune up your guitar either using a piano, by ear using a free chord website like GuitarChords247.com, a electronic tuner or  mobile MP3 based tuner like one of theses Iphone guitar tuners. As you imagine, getting access to a piano in a hurry can become problematic. And while it seems just about every thing can store MP3 files from iPods, cell phones to digital recorders, these solution too can become a burden.

So realistically until you can do by “ear” which will come with experience, your best and fastest route to a perfectly tuned guitar, especially one with decent tonal qualities, is a mobile app or electronic tuner.

Electronic tuners are little digital devices that many musicians ,both professionals and talented amateurs, use to detect off key notes from the electric guitar pickups and display the pitch as it is being played on instruments like electric guitars.

Some like the Peavey SPT-6G Wolfgang guitar tuners use simple LED lights to give you an approximate visual reading of whether the note is higher, lower or close to equal to the desired pitch you programmed in.

A more accurate and hence more expensive tuners like the Peavey PCT-6T Wolfgang guitar tuners can use a Quartz system along with a condenser microphone for acoustic tuning. The tuning process can be completely hands-off tuning with the results displayed on a digital LCD screen.

But not matter which Peavey Wolfgang guitar tuners you choose, you need to keep your guitar in tune every time you pick it up to play.

 

Music and Me

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. I recently found out that these words by Berthold Auerbach are bang on target. I often travel a lot. Traveling to work and back and traveling on weekends for visual delights, I have always been an out-going person. The surprising part is that never have I felt the importance of music while traveling so intensely. After having lost my wireless Bluetooth speakers on one of my travels, I was left with no music at all. This was when I felt a void and realized that I could not live without music, especially when out.

Jazz MusicWith this experience done, I thought to myself if I was a music addict. I was. At the risk of stating an oxymoron, I went on to read about how music is a good addiction. I would like to share with you the points I believe we all music addicts can related to:

Artists Ahoy: If you have an artistic nature, ambient music can help you improve creativity. Scientific research proves that a moderate noise level helps your brain generate fresh ideas. Ambient noise helps eliminate easy processing of information. Apparently, struggling to process things around us and trying to overcome a difficulty improves creativity.

Music Improves Visual Attention: If your favorite songs are among some specific genres of music, it can help you improve visual attention. Classical music was found to improve visual attention when studied with stroke patients as subjects. So when you feel like cutting off from the world when out in the city, simply get out your favorite outdoor speakers. Focusing on the things you like the most – city lights, running traffic, buildings, parks, gardens, forests or absolutely everything under the sun, helps you think creatively as you notice things better than you normally would. Music helps you focus. Some genres that help improve visual attention are- Blues, Jazz, Ambient, Classical and Reggae.

Conversations: They say that once you share a cigarette butt with someone, you share a healthy friendship with them. Same goes with music. You share the same taste in music with someone and you are bound to be friends. You have the most wonderful conversations with people who share the same love for music as you do. Icing on the cake is when their favorites are yours as well. A recent research also showed that people who listen to slow music are much better at presentations and interactive orations.

While this helped me understand why I missed my music, I also came across a very interesting piece of information which absolutely amused me. You can get to know about a person’s personality by getting to know their favorite genre. Here’s the classification –

  1. Blues and jazz: People who love to listen to Blues or jazz or both are mostly creative, have high self esteem, are polite and gentle and are outgoing.
  2. Rap fans are very social, outgoing and mostly have a childish charm to them.
  3. Country music lovers are hardworking and outgoing.
  4. Rock/heavy metal fans have been found to have low self esteem, not hardworking, not outgoing and gentle. (I highly doubt it)
  5. Reggae fans are creative, hardworking, gentle outgoing and at ease.

It doesn’t matter if you believe it or not but then getting to know these things is simply a living example of how music can be a good addiction.