Guitarist/composer Steve Vai has teamed with Allen Sides to create an iPhone/iPad app called the Oceanway Microphone Locker. Based on the CD-ROM Sides created in the ’90s, it utilizes mics from his collection at Ocean Way Recording studios, Hollywood, and allows recording engineers to readily match microphones to instruments. Sides is a Grammy-winning engineer and an authority on vintage and contemporary recording microphones.
The app includes tests of 66 mics and 33 instruments, including drums and cymbals, percussion, guitars, a Hammond B-3 organ and a variety of brass, woodwinds and strings. The microphones include models from AKG, Audix, Audio-Technica, B&K, Beyer, Coles, Crown, Electro-Voice, Groove Tube, Milab, Neumann, RCA, Sanken, Schoeps, Sennheiser, Shure, Sony, and Telefunken.
“When the app revolution hit, I remembered that great CD-ROM and knew it would make an extraordinary app,” explained Vai. “I acquired the rights [to its] contents and worked with Allen, who is a very good friend, and Metal Sidecar, LLC, to build an app from the material. Metal Sidecar did a fabulous job and the app is phenomenal. You can access Allen’s mic collection and match them with a range of musical instruments. You get tips on the best mic’ing techniques and can listen to samples played by top session cats.”
The app is available at the iTunes store.