Sabian’s new HHX Omni cymbal, designed in collaboration with Jojo Mayer, provides more nuanced tone on the ride surface. The stick sound stays a safe distance from the body of the cymbal and doesn’t get swallowed up even when played loudly. The HHX hammering adds the dimension of playing with the shoulder, which excites more of the cymbal’s body without activating the crash.
Switching Modes MXL Microphones’ CR20 vocal condenser mic has a tube emulation that provides a tube sound on demand and then easily switches back to solid-state. It has a flat, natural frequency response with a smooth top, making it well-suited for a range of genres and voices. More info:mxlmics.com
Rat’s Fat Rat guitar pedal provides tonal flexibility through a choice of original or MOSFET clipping circuits. It also has a bass enhancement feature that boosts the low-frequency response, making the Fat Rat an appropriate choice for guitarists and bassists who tune down their instruments. More info:ratdistortion.com
Precision Trimming Vandoren’s new line of high-precision reed trimmers includes five models for clarinet and two for alto saxophone. Each trimmer exactly replicates the tip contours of various reed cuts designed by Vandoren. The incremental guides and self-sharpening scissor-type blade give reed players precise control while still being easy to use. More info:dansr.com
Akai Professional’s MPX16 is an advanced sample player with onboard sound recording. It plays and records WAV samples using SD cards for reliable performance in live situations and studio settings. Samples are triggered internally from the MPC-style pads or an external MIDI device via USB-MIDI and 3.5mm MIDI inputs. The MPX16 is also capable of launching clips or adding trigger pads to a producer’s studio. More info:akaipro.com
Education Guide Published annually in DownBeat’s October issue
Jazz must not be the property of an elite few who possess a vast knowledge of the music’s history, performers, nuances and intricacies. But since jazz is a very advanced art form and has such a rich history, it’s important to have a grounding in this tradition to fully understand and appreciate what’s happening…More