Chatting with AAS Marc-Pierre Verge, and UJAM Stefan C. (Support)

Hi pals

I had a chat with AAS (Strum GS-2) Marc-Pierre Verge and UJAM Stefan C. (Support)

About Mark, I mentioned my poor videos :cold_face:, among the other things, and I told him the following:

"Feel free to share them, as a proof of concept that even a mousier can do something decent here and there :grinning:

That said, I think that plugin developers should use newbies also, not just keyboard masters, to do their demos, not mentioning when the demo is not made with the plugin ALONE like e.g the Garritan World Instruments whose sounds are a crap without proper effects applied YUK

Using keyboard masters is misleading and deceptive, and plugin makers risk losing customers that may spend a lot, as I did for East West and Sounpaint brasses, but when I found that a keyboard master was actually needed, I decided I’ll never buy anything else from them, and certainly I’ll never recommend them to any friend"

The Marc reply was:

“Thank you for your message, and sorry for the late reply, but we are currently at the NAMM trade show. The videos are very interesting, and I will forward them to Simon who is responsible for our social media. I think you have a good point regarding the production of videos with musicians of all levels.
Congratulations for your music. I listened to a few of your pieces on Soundcloud, and I am impressed by the variety of styles! Thank you for using Strum.”

About UJAM Stefan, I asked the following:

“Hi, there is any chance to have a Broomstick Bass 64bit, possibly with better sounds?
I’ve never stopped using it, even if your basses (I tested some) and my Toontrack EZBass sound better; but if I want just jam or audit sounds on a quick base, nothing beats BB with its drummer metronome; Sven is a genius and I think he deserves a revamped BB; BTW, there are many google searches for an automatic bass & drums, so I don’t think it’s a niche with zero ROI”

and he replied:

"Thank you very much for reaching out and sharing your insightful feedback with us.

Your Broomstick Bass request has been duly noted, and we will consider it for future updates and releases, aiming to enhance the experience for the entire UJAM user community.

We acknowledge the importance of introducing new products and features and understand how they can positively impact the user experience. Rest assured, your feedback has been forwarded to our development team for careful consideration.

While we cannot guarantee immediate action, every suggestion is reviewed as part of our ongoing commitment to refine our software.
Once again, thank you for your active participation in our community, which is invaluable in shaping better products for everyone. "

Well, I think they are more or less the standard polite replies to a polite customer; nevertheless, I think that users should communicate more with developers, instead of just mourning for bugs, and who knows? If many ask, maybe that something happens :smile:

My 2 cents


Hi Claudio, I had dinner with many of the guys from UJAM whilst I was in the UK. They are really nice guys.


Cool, so you can help me to push certain ideas :grin: :smile:

What do you mean by keyboard masters?

I’m curious because I started getting into soundpaint and I bought a few libraries and SP is a super unique platform. It would take a LOT for me to cancel it. There’s nothing else out there that uses it’s sample morphing technology that seamlessly transitions between sample layers without blending (mixing). The interface takes getting used to but it’s fantastic once you do. I wish SP was more popular so more stuff would be developed for it. They give the platform away for free and then they give you a sample editor for free so you can make your own libs. What else can they really do. Their libs also draw on masterfully sample content from 8DIO (repurposed especially for SP). Anyway. I should do a proper review on SP when I get the time (which is almost never).

what is BB?

Yeah uJam I’m sure are nice people but they don’t really listen. On many occasions I’ve raised the request of having their plugins output the generated midi but they don’t even humour the idea. They said you can drag and drop individual phrases but this is not a reasonable proposition and I’ve also pointed it out many times. After that they just ignore me. I’ve seen other commenters agree with me as well. For example their virtual piano instrument, if I want to use the midi from one of their phrases, I have to feed it the chord input, and THEN drag the phrase to the DAW one at a time. You lose ghost notes that are specific for transitions. They build all that cleverness in then they strip it if you want midi. Besides, it’s making you do grunt work when instead all they need to do is release the midi to the output of the plugin so we can use it as a midi processor like scaler. Their sound libraries are super-limited and I don’t think they need to rely on that to sell product. The midi processing is 80% of the product IMO. Obviously they disagree but they don’t talk about it.

A lot of the time it’s really necessary to edit the notes it produces but without the tedious drag and drop exercise, you can’t.

I mean that their frontman is very able at keyboards, so perfectly able to use both hands independently so to produce chords, notes and articulations

But this is impossible if you are not good enough at keyboards, like me

Look e.g. this video

If you think you’ll be able to do the same without being very good at keyboards, you are a dreamer

Here is some piece of text from another post of mine

"During these years I got some lemon (for example the KK ones and the Evolution Hollowbody Blues below), i.e. instruments that seemed possible to play, while they were rather impossible to tame

I have to say that videos (even if not made by devs) are rarely fair, as they often let the potential buyer believe they can use the tool easily while it isn’t at all

This is particularly true for guitar and brass plugins because the articulations that are almost impossible to re-create with a keyboard, unless you are a keyboard wizard AND you are also trained in using the articulation keys of each plugin"

Broomstick Bass, the only one vst around that plays bass and drums automatically, like an arranger
The reason why I never stopped using it for auditing Scaler patterns, or just jamming without recording

I think maybe the scaler guys should think about producing instruments which eat their lunch. Develop a similar platform which is style-specific and sell product on a per-instrument, per-style basis. Not as a cynical money making exercise but because people like me really want it. There’s a decent market for it otherwise uJam wouldn’t be as successful and as big as they are. It’s easy enough to purchase existing recorded sample libraries to licence them for new software. No need to embark on a new recording venture. Then this time, “sync” scaler to the instrument (or select the scaler instance from within the instrument plugin) and now there is no-need to FILTER THE NOTES because the damn instrument plugin DOES NOT RELY ON KEY SWITCHES that get “tramped on” by incoming notes from plugins like scaler.

But for god’s sake, unlike uJame, have the processed midi passed out for use by other plugins and for use by the DAW for recording (and subsequent editing).

I am a jammer, so I hate any kind of editing :grin:

I’m a programmer. All I do is edit. I can’t play an instrument to save my life. Thats why scaler is at 99% of my music production. It’s the engine for my tracks.

We are the direct opposite, LOL
Scaler serves to create original foundations, but I like more jamming
Certainly with some help because I’m not Mike Oldfield :grin:

I wrote a post about my difficult balance between Too much Help and Too little help

1 Like

Thats cool. I prefer to think of it as being complimentary. I’ve started working with another musician who has decades of experience playing in bands etc.

As far help is concerned, I think the more I can “cheat” the better. I made a video about cheating. For me, music is a giant playground and everyone is invited.

I produce tracks that are “designed” to jam… if you can imagine that…


Well, playing with friends is a great thing
I had a band in the past and I had a lot of fun
Unfortunately, I don’t have time and friends currently to do that: this is why I play alone With a Little Help of My plugin Friends :smile:

LOL. yes. I also get by with a little help from my plugin friends. I just make music for myself mostly. I don’t imagine many people would be interested in my little laboratory experiments. Having said that, I enjoy challenging myself and learning new things. My next focus will be on interesting song structure with key modulation and transitions. @davide did a nice totorial on how to do that within Scaler. I’ve done it before but I want to focus on the art of story-telling through the usage of musical modes as well as instrument expression and production techniques.

If I had the ability to learn an instrument, I would. I’d love to have the ability to jam with other musicians but if it was gonna happen, it would have happened by now. I just can’t practice instruments. I get board with the mundane crap that beginners produce and I can’t see any reward for it. I have severe ADHD (which is not what most people think it is). I know a lot of musicians have ADHD but they just have it differently - which is how things go with these things. It’s not an excuse, it just means I focus my energies where I perceive the rewards to be. Would love to work with people who have actual talent on real instruments though. It’s not an either/or scenario.

I made a video which was hallow dive into how I CHEATED to make (emulate) reggae. I think maybe 2 people watched it through (maybe less). No comments. Maybe it’s just not that interesting.

1 Like

Yeah I hear ya. That’s why I don’t have expectations of recreating the sound that demo videos make. You can always ask a mate to have a go with it and send you the midi to incorporate in to your productions but yeah. Cannot reproduce same musical results. I think you can get halfway there with ezkeys which basically captures real musicians and then saves the patterns and applies them to different notes/chords. That way you can cheat but that only works for piano-style or keyboard style sample libraries.

Reubin from the HiFi MIDI channel specialises on keyboard techniques for guitars. I guess you could say PRACTICING your TWEAKING (editing) with articulations is analogous with practing an instrument or anything else for that matter. The more you do it, the more you will get out of your sound linbrary. Thats what I love about computers, I can do things one step at a time without having to have first achieved mastery. Who has time to master all the instruments out there. Impossible. But I get get part of the way there through patient editing and have something to show for it.

1 Like

Soundpaint are good for libraries of short samples, like e.g. piano… For long samples, clarinet, flute, etc. things get weird. I asked for help to highlight why these libraries dont work properly in my environment/setting, but Soundpaint couldn’t help… I have abandoned them since.
I stick to EW and Spitfire Audio.