Tomorrow I will have a truly unique experience in preparing to give an out-of-town concert this weekend. Thanks to the power of the Internet, I will be in my home studio having a live rehearsal with two musicians in Washington, D.C. who will power my band for this concert. “Uncle Devin” Walker and “Wonderful Wardell” Howell will be at Devin’s place in D.C., connected to me in real-time using the JamKazam computer application. Using microphones, headphones, and our Internet connections, we’ll be able to interact almost like we’re all three performing together in the same room.
Making music together in real time presents special challenges that go beyond the use of Skype or Facetime, where the experience of brief delays or “latency” is fairly common and usually not disruptive to a conversation. Those same little delays can throw off a band’s rhythm quite a bit when jamming together from different locations. To keep the JamKazam session running as smooth as possible, it’s important to plug a network cable directly into your Internet router (sometimes built right into the modem supplied by your Internet service provider) and not rely on the convenience of Wi-Fi, which also comes with its own little time delays when streaming audio or video.
This will be my first experience with JamKazam and I’m excited about the possibilities this opens to connect with fellow musicians in a new and inspiring way. In this case it means that our impromptu band for next weekend can be well rehearsed ahead of my trip to the D.C. area. In my case, I’m counting on JamKazam to meet a specific need in prepping for a show with musicians I’ve already become familiar with. But JamKazam can also connect musicians with like-minded musicians with similar tastes and levels of mastery. The search tools make it possible to look for musicians to jam with on a specific instrument or in a geographic location. The folks at JamKazam told me that video capability is coming about 2 months from the time this article is published.
If you’re in the D.C. area and have kids who could use some good family entertainment, come out and rock with us at Jammin’ Java in Vienna, VA this Saturday. We take the stage at 10:30. This is a one-of-a-kind show where my Jersey style, Bruce Springsteen influenced rock-n-roll for kids will meet the funk/jazz/R&B stylings of my D.C. friends. I’m calling this show “Jersey Jason Meets the D.C. Jungle Gym Jam.”
Would you like a free sampling of my music? Help yourself to three of my songs at http://www.njkindiemusic.com/dc-area.
How has the Internet connected you and your family with people who live outside your area? What are your hopes for the possibilities the Internet holds in connecting people? Please share your comments below.