Dreaming of a future in which music, instead of just being rendered audio files, arrives in fully generative, interactive form? Albums might “listen” to the world around you, and listeners could record their own alternate versions of music and share with others.
RjDj, the generative mobile music platform for Apple devices, realizes that future right now, instead of at some nebulous time in the future. In addition to the iPhone, you can make use of a second-generation iPod to use it. (You’ll need a headset with a mic; I have one by Griffin I’m testing.) And the RjDj folks have a whole bevy of significant updates to share:
- Free downloads (limited time): All three RjDj releases are available now for free. That includes the RjDj app itself (from which you can now grab and share releases), as well as RjDj Album (with a selection of generative/interactive/reactive releases) and the new RjDj shake.
- Download “scenes”: From the beginning, we knew that RjDj was imagined as a platform for other people to release interactive music. Now you can download scenes for free or fee. (Paid scenes currently redirect to the browser, but with iPhone SDK 3.0, you’ll be able to buy right from the app.)
- Share recordings: Because RjDj-generated music is controlled by the user and often records from the environment, the music may sound different each time. You can now share recordings with others from the device and the new social site.
- RjDj.me community: The RjDj folks have built a little community where you can share your favorite scenes and upload recordings, and keep track of scenes coming out from other artists.
By the way, with all of these releases, I know there’s some confusion. RjDj is the main app — the platform from which you’ll be able to grab scenes in the future. RjDj Album is a collection of “player”-style RjDj scenes — ones we have seen released previously. RjDj Shake is a newer, accelerometer-powered set of scenes. It comes with the amusing admonition that you should “PLEASE TAKE CARE, DON’T HURT ANYONE AND DON’T SMASH YOUR DEVICE.” If you missed Shake before, it now also has the recording sharing features. But the main RjDj app is the big release going forward.
We’re also awaiting news on more “sprints,” community-driven development efforts for making new scenes. And if you’re a fan of this sort of thing, RjDj isn’t the only game in town. RjDj itself is powered on Pure Data, the open source patching cousin of Max/MSP. Pd is making its way to other mobile devices; I even have it working on the BUG Labs gadget. At the same time, I’m curious to see if the RjDj gang can succeed in building a platform for lots of people doing this sort of work.
Regardless of how you look at it, more mobile generative / responsive music is most definitely in your future. Stay tuned.
Free trip into the rainbow vein: reality-enhancing iPhone app RjDj free with social update [Boing Boing Offworld]
Be sure to see our previous interview with the creators:
Exclusive RjDj Interview: Interactive Music Listening, Everywhere You Go
Also, expect more iPod/iPhone news and hands-on’s soon — I’m way behind, but let’s assume that means the best stuff will rise to the top.