We first met the Jammy – a portable, modular digital travel guitar that features 15 standard-sized frets, touch sensors to track finger positions, string muting and bending levels, and a detachable neck – back in 2018 and were immediately wowed.
Able to fit into most backpacks, the battery-powered six-string can be plugged straight into an amp, a DAW or headphones. The guitar's sound is both generated and processed on board, so different effects can be used without the need of a mobile app.
But that’s only the beginning of what the Jammy is capable of. In this demo video, in-demand recording and touring guitarist Jay Leonard J writes and records an entire song in just five minutes using only the Jammy MIDI guitar – which, he says with amazement, “looks like something Johnny 5 from Short Circuit would play.” It’s a completely digital guitar, but, he says, “it has real strings on it so there is a tactile experience.”
Jay goes on to explain that “there’s two ways to run the Jammy. The first way is in standalone mode, where you use a 1/4” inch cable and treat it just like a normal guitar. There’s an app that has a bunch of different guitars and pedals and you practice and create your sounds there.”
The way Jay prefers to use it, however, is as a MIDI controller.
Which is what he does as he shows us how to write and record a “quick little song” using only Cubase and the Jammy.
Jay begins by finding a drum sound. “I can map any note on this guitar to any sound I want,” he says. “Let’s say I want my open E string to be my kick. All of a sudden I’ve got myself a kick!”
From there, he assigns toms, cymbals, snare and more to various strings and notes on the Jammy and lays down a drum loop.
Next, he finds a bass sound he likes, programs it to the Jammy and plays along to the drum groove.
After that he adds pads and, using the built-in accelerometer – a motion sensor that lets you control different aspects of the sound by tilting the Jammy – maps it to a tube distortion sound to “give me a little bit of edge.”
“That is epic!,” he says.
To top it off, he dials in a lead setting to add on that “last little bit of melody.”
And just like that, Jay says, “you’ve recorded a song!”
His final verdict? “If you’re a guitar player that’s just a little bit jealous of all the cool sounds the keyboard player in the band is getting, well, it might be a cool time to pick up a Jammy.”
Even cooler, from now until December 31, 2020 you can grab one for just $419 – $80 off the list price.
For more information, head to Play Jammy.