Six scary questions—Sonoma Wireworks

The Six scary questions series of articles wouldn’t be a series without at least two articles in it. Thanks to Sonoma Wireworks, we have a series! Sonoma Wireworks has been creating software and hardware for the musical community for quite some time now. I’ve used their software and hardware, but I hadn’t asked them six scary questions yet. Because my questions aren’t actually scary, I still haven’t. I did get answers to these questions though.

Six scary questions

  1. You produce software and apps for people using Windows, Mac and iOS. What was the first piece of guitar related software you created? Our first piece of software was RiffWorks, which is still going strong today. RiffWorks was included for a time with Line 6 hardware, a favorite amongst guitar players. RiffWorks is a recording program unlike any other that has a unique loop based work flow, free song posting, online collaboration, and our award winning InstantDrummer.
  2. RiffWorks includes a connection to your RiffCast community forum. How important is the community aspect of your software to you and your customers? Being able to RiffCast and collaborate with others was one of the big draws to RiffWorks for most people. Musicians can connect with, and work on songs with people around the world. At a recent tradeshow, I met up with a US user who is now close friends with other users in Japan! Several of our users have made connections like this, organizing unofficial jam sessions in person and online. it’s thrilling to see the type of community that has arisen around RiffWorks. We are taking this into account as we develop the next generation of our software.
  3. In the iOS market you produce apps for guitar (GuitarTone), drums (InstantDrummer) and recording (FourTrack and StudioTrack). When developing these apps how important was their integration in regards to importing and exporting sound files? In a perfect world, all music apps would be compatible with each other so that the workflow can continue uninterrupted no matter what tools you choose to use. Unfortunately, there are various limitations to this. We are working hard to break down these barriers. We developed the AudioCopy/AudioPaste technology (now being developed by Retronyms) that allowed users to use multiple iOS apps to create music. There are now new tools that allow for greater compatibility between apps. We are also working hard to ensure two of our biggest products, RiffWorks and DrumCore can work together.
  4. You were one of the first (if not the first) companies to make audio transfer a possibility in iOS with your AudioCopy/AudioPaste system. Did you always plan on opening that up to other companies or did they come knocking on your door once you’d added it to your own apps? AudioCopy/AudioPaste was always free for developers to adopt and we were pleasantly surprised by how quickly they did. We had over 100 developers big and small put AudioCopy and/or AudioPaste into their applications. I think it was the right thing and the right time. We are now excited to see how Retronyms will continue to push AudioCopy and AudioPaste forward.
  5. You’ve also developed an app for Taylor Guitars. What was it like creating tone to represent this iconic company? Taylor Guitars is an amazing group of people and we feel so privileged to have been able to work with them. TaylorEQ was a really fun app to develop. TaylorEQ gives Taylor owners the ability to get the best tone out of their guitars by using EQ settings specifically created for their models. Taylor guitars always sound great, but when run through the TaylorEQ, they really shine.
  6. You also make hardware such as the GuitarJack (I remember using the awesome Model 1 on the iPhone 3). What’s changed since the introduction of Model 2 and the USB model of this interface? The devices and technology advances extremely rapidly. We are focusing now on a new line of hardware that is completely multi-platform, meaning one set of gear that works with everything you have, all operating systems, and all devices. We believe that multi-platform is the future and are proud to unveil a snapshot of what we’ve been working on at NAMM 2014 in Anaheim, CA.

One not-so scary question

  1. What’s in the not-so-distant future for Sonoma Wireworks and its customers? We are about to launch the highly anticipated DrumCore 4 plug-in which features drum content performed by celebrity drummers. We are also releasing the line multi-platform audio devices I mentioned earlier beginning with GuitarJack Stage, pedal control and audio I/O for desktop and mobile. Beyond that, you’ll have to sign up for our free email newsletter to get the latest info:

Many thanks to the kind folks at Sonoma Wireworks for participating in this new article series of mine. I don’t know about anybody else, but I’m wishing I was at NAMM 2014. GuitarJack Stage sounds amazing. I know I’ll be looking out for it.

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