Apple Adds Concert Discovery Features to Maps



On Maps, more than 40 new Guides, each expertly curated by Apple Music editors, highlight the best venues to experience live music in some of the world’s leading culture hubs. From landmark Viennese symphony halls to cutting-edge techno clubs in Brooklyn and Tokyo, these hand-picked selections — currently spanning over 10 cities — are all music fans need for an unforgettable night out. Apple Music Guides also allow fans to browse venues’ upcoming shows directly from Maps through Shazam’s concert discovery module — part of a suite of features that Shazam introduced last spring, leveraging concert information from the world-renowned event recommendation and artist discovery platform Bandsintown. 

MusicSmart 2.0


John Voorhees, reviewing MusicSmart 2.0 for MacStories:

MusicSmart, which is available for the iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV, is a little different than Tanaka’s other apps. Instead of casting a broad net to track the entire range of your musical tastes, the app is about digging deeper into individual songs, albums, or artists’ catalogs. But follow the threads offered by MusicSmart, and the narrow focus that sets it apart from Tanaka’s other apps will paradoxically lead to new musical discoveries and, ultimately, broaden your tastes.

I’ve been using it for a while and it works better on the more popular/mainstream stuff in my collection, but it’s a lot faster than Googling and trying to find any information on an album/song.

Logic Pro and Final Cut Pro Come to iPad



Apple today unveiled Final Cut Pro and Logic Pro for iPad. Video and music creators can now unleash their creativity in new ways that are only possible on iPad. Final Cut Pro and Logic Pro for iPad bring all-new touch interfaces that allow users to enhance their workflows with the immediacy and intuitiveness of Multi-Touch.

“Concert Mode” for AirPods?


Mark Bramhill writes about the idea a “concert mode” for AirPods:

On paper, concert earplugs are very similar to Adaptive Transparency: they allow the sounds of the world around you to pass through, but they lower allsound by an even amount. There are several reasons people use concert earplugs: to prevent searing pain from loud volumes, protect hearing from long-term damage (especially for musicians and audio professionals), and limit overstimulation for neurodivergent people. But while reducing all sounds and frequencies evenly is the goal, even good concert earplugs don’t achieve this. They sound somewhat-to-very muffled, which makes it harder to feel immersed in the music around you.

I have a similar thought as Nick Heer:

This is a great idea in every way, with the sole exception of the optics of a crowd of people watching their favourite band while apparently listening to something else. That will never not look strange to me.

My current favorite concert earplugs are barely noticeable.

Make Something Wonderful


From the Steve Jobs archive:

A curated collection of Steve’s speeches, interviews and correspondence, Make Something Wonderful offers an unparalleled window into how one of the world’s most creative entrepreneurs approached his life and work. In these pages, Steve shares his perspective on his childhood, on launching and being pushed out of Apple, on his time with Pixar and NeXT, and on his ultimate return to the company that started it all.

iTunes for Windows Being Replaced

Andrew Cunningham, writing at Ars:

Today, as part of a new Windows 11 preview build for Windows Insiders, Microsoft has announced that previews of new Apple MusicApple TV, and Apple Devices apps are available in the Microsoft Store for download.

The Apple Music and Apple TV apps handle iTunes’ music and video functionality, just as they do on macOS, and provide access to the Apple Music and Apple TV+ subscription services. The Apple Devices app is what you’ll use to make local device backups, perform emergency software updates, sync local media, and the other things you can do with an iDevice that’s plugged into your PC (in macOS, similar functionality was added to the Finder, rather than being broken out into its own app).

Apple Announces Apple Music Sing


Apple today announced Apple Music Sing, an exciting new feature that allows users to sing along to their favorite songs with adjustable vocals and real-time lyrics. Apple Music Sing offers multiple lyric views to help fans take the lead, perform duets, sing backup, and more — all integrated within Apple Music’s unparalleled lyrics experience. Coupled with an ever-expanding catalog that features tens of millions of the world’s most singable songs, Apple Music Sing makes it fun and easy for anyone to participate, however and wherever they choose.

Apple Music Sing will be available later this month to Apple Music subscribers worldwide, and can be enjoyed on iPhone, iPad, and the new Apple TV 4K.

Apple Music Replay Gets Expanded Highlights

John Voorhees, writing at MacStories:

Many of the statistics you’ll see as part of your latest Replay will be familiar, but there’s a new twist too. For the Replay 2022, Apple has added a Highlights Reel, which is a video of cards animating on and off-screen with highlights of the music you listened to in 2022. As the cards animate on and off your screen, the music that defined your year plays in the background. Replay’s highlights are only available on the web, and the Highlights Reel looks best on an iPhone, but it can be viewed in any web browser.

This is pretty cool and a big step up from what they had before. Being able to share the stats as images is nice, but I wish I could share the full reel, or a better “recap” of the entire year in one compact image. The closest is probably that last image in the reel. (They must not be counting anything listened to in your downloaded library, because there are two albums I played more than the one they have here, but both racked up a lot of plays as advances. Yet another reason I (and a few others) still use

And, while I know I’m basically alone on this island, the year isn’t over so none of these count yet.

MacStories Reviews MusicBox


Federico Viticci, writing at MacStores:

 MusicBox, the latest app by indie developer Marcos Tanaka, is the “listen-later” music app of my dreams, the one I’ve wanted to use for years and that someone finallymade as a Universal app for iPhone, iPad, and Mac. It’s rare for me these days to find new apps that elicit this kind of enthusiasm, but when I do, I know I’ve stumbled upon something special. MusicBox is one of those apps.

This review is going to be pretty straightforward. If you’re a music lover and use either Apple Music or Spotify, and if you feel like you discover more interesting music than you can possibly consume in a day, MusicBox is for you. Open the App Store, spend $2.99 (there are no subscriptions or In-App Purchases in the app), and you’ll get what is likely going to be one of your favorite apps of 2022. Then, if you want to learn more about what the app does, how it integrates with Apple Music, and how you can set it up on your device, come back to this story and let’s dive in.

Apple Music Adds Anniversaries Feature

John Voorhees, writing at MacStories:

Apple Music was quietly updated today with a new feature: Essentials Anniversaries. The new Apple Music section features landmark albums from artists organized by their anniversaries, from five-year anniversaries all the way to 65-year-old albums.

The first featured anniversary is OK Computer by Radiohead, which celebrates its 25th anniversary tomorrow, May 21, 2022. The new Essentials Anniversaries section includes Radiohead’s album, a handful of music videos, and something new: an episode of a Apple Music radio show also called Essentials Anniversaries. The first episode is hosted by DJ Matt Wilkinson, who introduces most tracks, providing context and commentary and interviewing people involved in the production of OK Computer.

The iPod is Officially Discontinued



“Music has always been part of our core at Apple, and bringing it to hundreds of millions of users in the way iPod did impacted more than just the music industry — it also redefined how music is discovered, listened to, and shared,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “Today, the spirit of iPod lives on. We’ve integrated an incredible music experience across all of our products, from the iPhone to the Apple Watch to HomePod mini, and across Mac, iPad, and Apple TV. And Apple Music delivers industry-leading sound quality with support for spatial audio — there’s no better way to enjoy, discover, and experience music.”

I remember my very first iPod. 10 GB. Black and white. And I loved it.

iOS Music Player Showcase


Marc Barrowclift wrote the most comprehensive guide to iOS music playing apps I’ve ever read:

There’s new and exciting developments every year in the realm of iOS third-party music players, and 2021 was no exception. While 2019 enjoyed an explosion of new players like Power Player and Albums that through time came to lead the space, 2020 in contrast received only a modest handful of new players and is instead remembered for the impressive growth the established player base received that year. This past year, 2021, managed to do both with a dizzying array of five new players and impressive growth across nearly all existing players.

A long, but extremely detailed and informative article. My favorite remains Marvis, due to its customizability, widget, and integration.