Updated: October 30, 2020
Do you miss jamming with your fellow ukulele players and musicians live and in-person? ZOOM's audio not in snyc and your not sounding together? Let Jamulus handle the audio by connecting to one of the many Jamulus Servers listed around the world or setting up your own Jamulus Server.
Checkout this article from Swingology a Washington DC based jazz group regarding software that can be used for remote rehearsal and performances. Remote Rehearsal Software . They also settled on using Jamulus.
You can still use video conferencing software such has, ZOOM , Skype , or Jitsi Meet for the visual in-person, group aspect, and you will not notice the visuals don't match up. It's as easy turning off the audio of ZOOM, Skype, or the video conferencing program that you're using and use the audio from Jamulus. All you need is a program called Loopback if you are on a Mac to handle the audio ( other audio options for Linux and Windows are listed below ).
This page will deal with my (Curt's) venture in setting up a Funky Frets / LearningUkulele.com Jamulus Server. And, a big thanks to Glen Hirabayashi of the Aloha Boys for turning me on to Jamulus and help with testing.
There is a lot of video conferencing software available such as ZOOM, Microsoft Teams, GoToMeeting, RingCentral Video, Google Meet, Jitsi, etc.
With the 2020, COVID-19 Pandemic and ZOOM the hottest video conferencing software. Here is a page of tips to help have the best experience, visually and with audio when using zoom. Zoom is the software that LearningUkulele.com is the most familiar with.
Follow the More Information to learn all about what is needed from your Computer, Internet Connection, Audio Connection, Musical Instruments, and Jamulus.
There is nothing like jammin' with your fellow musicians. That is the one thing, the real-time feedback for trying out ideas and learning new musical ideas that musicians and I miss. Let alone the personal interaction with fellow, like-minded humans that share our passion for music.
Jamulus is a great place to jam on-line with people around the world. And, the software is FREE and open-source. Jamulus allows you to connect to a public or private server and jam with a low latency response (depending on your network connection).
Here is a great, short video for downloading and installing the Jamulus software on a PC (Windows) or Mac.
The “Funky Frets” Jamulus Servers • ARE NOW LIVE!!!
October 27, 2020 - the Funky Frets/LearningUkulele.com Jamulus Server, a dedicated place for ukulele players worldwide to jam - ARE NOW LIVE.
There are actually two Funky Frets Jamulus public servers running. The Funky Frets - East server is a test server I'm running at home and I'll most likely will not keep it running.
When you "Connect" in your Jamulus application, select the Funky Frets or Funky Frets Two server. Both are located in Newark, NJ United States and usually pretty fast for Northeast USA folks.
Starting in November, we'll be posting scheduled jams with a pre-determined set of songs to be played during each jam. The server is also available other times for casual jamming. If all goes well servers can be provisioned in other areas of the USA and Europe as we go along. For a general guideline of how we intend to run the jam, checkout the Jamulus World Jam facebook page.
The All Genres, Funky Frets server, Newark, NJ United States
Latency is the one big problem that you have when a computer is processing audio, and you are listening back either through headphones or speakers . If there is any delay, our ears will have a tough time syncing the visual and physical parts. Jamulus Servers goes a long way in solving this dilemma.
What is Latency?
Latency from a general point of view is the time delay between the visual and audio. Audio Latency refers to a short period of delay (usually measured in milliseconds) between when an audio signal enters a system and when it emerges.
Latency in live performance occurs naturally from the speed of sound. It takes sound about 3 milliseconds to travel 1 meter (3.28084feet).
Latency can be a particular problem in audio platforms on computers. Latency happens when recording or performing a vocal or an instrument. Latency is the time delay that you hear between the live performance, the processing by a computer or electronic equipment, and the playing back through monitors or headphones .
Latency is measured in milliseconds (ms), which is thousandths of a second. Each 1ms of latency is roughly equal to 1 foot of distance, so 25ms of latency is trying to play an instrument in sync with someone that is 25 feet away.
For performing music on-line with fellow musicians. anything below < 20ms to 25ms is not very noticeable. The lower, the better. When performing live, latency is never an issue unless you are far away, and the performance is projected in real-time on huge screens. You might then see the image is not synced with the audio as light and sound travel at different speeds.
Optimized Linux Systems
On Linux there are several distributions (distros), that are optimized for making -music and support real-time capabilities for music production. These distros include, Ubuntu Studio , KXStudio based off Ubuntu Studio, AV Linux . Here is a page listing maintains and unmaintained distros: Linux Audio Bundles and Distributions
Here is a web page of tips regarding How Audio Latency Can Affect Your Recording and Mixing from Practical Music Production.
From this point on, the information that follows is for the more adventurous individuals and techies who want to set up and run a Jamulus server of their own. It's not that scary or hard to do as you might think.
Jamulus is open-source, i.e. FREE and community supported software for playing, rehearsing, or just jamming with your friends, your band, or just anyone you find on-line. Use your Windows , macOS , or Linux machine to connect to Jamulus servers worldwide, for free over a normal broadband connection. Or host a private server. Jamulus, designed for high quality, low-latency sound, makes is easy to play together remotely and in time.
Computer and Music Gear Recommendations for Getting the Most Out of Jamulus
A Computer running either Windows 10 , MacOS X El Capitan (v10.11) or higher, or Linux .
A Wired Internet Connection ( don't use Wi-Fi, it will cause sound problems ). Most broadband connections will be fine. If you have 10Mbits down and 1Mbps up, you're unlikely to run into bandwidth-related issues. You can check you down and up speeds with this SPEEDTEST link. There are several sites and apps that can run this speed test. My results at home with Verizon Fios are around: Ping: 14ms, Downloads: 96 Mbps, Uploads: 116 Mbps.
Wired Headphones - NOT speakers to prevent echo or feedback and (particularity if singing or playing acoustic instruments) to make sure you keep in time with others (see the note on this for why).
Links & Resources for Running Your Own Jamulus Server
- Jamulus - Internet Jam Session Software • • Jamulus is Open Source software (GPL, GNU General Public License) and runs under Windows (ASIO), MacOS (Core Audio) and Linux (Jack). It is based on the Qt framework and uses the OPUS audio codec. ( from the Jamulus GitHub site )
- GitHub • Installation and Getting Started
- Wiki: To get playing with Jamulus - START HERE
- Jamulus OS • Run Jamulus on any computer using a USB stick (64-bit systems only). Jamulus OS is a Linux distribution based on Ubuntu Studio with Jamulus software out of the box. It can check your hardware and let you know if your computer and connection is ok for Jamulus jam sessions
- Jamulus WorldJam
- Jamulus Help (Software Manual) • All the skinny on the "Client" side software. This is the non-server Jamulus. It goes over the intervls and all teh setting that are possible.
Miscellaneous Links & Reference
- AudioGeek: Jam music on-line with Jamulus
- AudioGeek: Live-stream your on-line jam on a Mac
- Server Setup for On-line Jam and Band Practice
- How to Create a Private Server for Band Rehearsals
- Simon Tomlinson: HOWTO: Idiots Guide to Installing Jamulus Server on Amazon AWS Lightsail Ubuntu instance
- Docker Configuration for Jamulus Music Server
Here at LearningUkulele.com we use OBS , ZOOM, Skype, Loopback, etc a lot. And, Curt has expertise with Mac and Linux computers. Curt has been on a Mac since 1987. And, exploring Linux for several years.
I'm sure there are other options - but I'm recommending and use Jamulus. On to setting up the Funky Frets / LearningUkulele.com Jamulus Server. So come with me (Curt) as I venture into hosting our own Funky Frets / LearningUkulele.com Jamulus Server.
On to the good parts...
How to Setup a Jamulus Server
Here we go. Buckle-up, strap yourself in as we go down that geeky trail of setting up and hosting Jamulus Servers. As a musician and graphic artist, this is new territory for me and an exciting journey. "Cue the music!" And, with a wink and a nod, and Thank You, Glen. Here we go down yet another Internet® “Rabbit Hole” ;-)
Setting Up a Private Server
After all the actual musical gear, audio interface, headphones, and a wired Internet® connection is completed. Time to set up the Public or Private Server. Why a Private Server? With a private server, you can control access to the jam with invites only. Jamulus servers can be public-facing or private. With a GUI or "Headless". Checkout the Jamulus wiki page for Choosing a Server Type
Network Settings, IP Address and Port Forwarding
You'll need to gather the three IP addresses needed to configure a Jamulus Server.
There are two addresses for every device. a public-facing address and an internal/local address. A google search will show how to find your public-facing IP Address depending on your operating system. Here is what the IP addresses look like on my computers running Mac OS X and Linux: Pop!_OS.
IP Address Examples
- The Local Computer IP that will be running the Jamulus server: 10.1.10.174
- You local Router IP : 10.1.10.1 • All routers are different and a google search might be needed.
- Your Public IP: 18.104.22.168 (Finding Your Public IP Address ). This, with the Jamulus port number is the public IP Address for others to locate your Jamulus server.
Mac OS X IP Addresses
Go to the System Preferences… menu item in the Apple menu and then select Network and find the network adapter you are looking for. Remember you need a wired connection to the Internet • for a Jamulus Server to work - NO WIFI.
Linux IP Addresses
On the Desktop. Open Network Connections Settings.
Using the Terminal.
You can get you public-facing IP address using this link: Finding Your Public IP Address .
Windows IP Address
I don't have much experience with Windows (yet!), so a Google search or a YouTube search will get you the information on how to find you local and router IP addresses.
Here is a link that might help: 8 ways to find your IP address in Windows (all versions)
Setting Up Port Forwarding
Port forwarding allows remote computers (for example, computers on the Internet) to connect to a specific computer or service within a private local-area network (LAN). Just what is needed for Jamulus Server.
After collecting your three IP addresses, the IP of the computer running the server, the IP of the router, and your public IP of the server. Time to set up Port Forwarding the address for Jamulus on the router. For this, you need to access your router. Be careful, very careful when adjusting the settings to your router. This is geeky stuff - not scary but you can screw up your connection to the Internet®.
A Few Links for More Information on Configuring Your Router
Here is some information from the Jamulus facebook Group. How to create a private server for band rehearsals . The facebook group also recommends setting up a firewall for you computer and the router. (Note) The information and graphics if for a Windows computer.
All the information on getting access to your router should be printed on the router somewhere.
View this YouTube video for an example of setting up the router.
Find the Port Forwarding section after logging into your router's admin section and add an application or service. The service type is UDP as Jamulus only works with that setting. Add your local IPv4 Server Address
The Jamulus port is 22124.
Note: It is not necessary to port-forward or otherwise configure your router to run a public server.
That is part one of the techy stuff. On to hosting and running the server.
Running Jamulus: Client and Server
Download and run Jamulus Client, the client application first, then Jamulus Server. If launching the server from the desktop you will need to enter the IP address and port manually. If launching from the terminal use the command below.
You can alternatively launch the Jamulus Server application from a terminal with the needed commands instead of from the desktop. The "-s" is to launch the Jamulus Server.
You can alternatively launch the Jamulus Server application with the "-c IP Address".
You can always get help for more options available to run your server.
Note: the -s Open Jamulus Server -p 22124 select port 22124 -w is a Welcome Text Message. And, you can tell the server to record the sessions by adding -R to record the session in the Reaper format.
Was really easy to get the server running on the Mac.
Only the target file path will be different.
After the Jamulus Server is running un-check "Make My Server Public (...)" option is going public.
After all is setup you should be able to play with little to no latency. See below for an explanation of Latency
After compiling the Jamulus source code you will have a Jamulus command you can run from the terminal.
After the Jamulus Server is running un-check "Make My Server Public (...)" option if going private.
After all is setup you should be able to jam with fellow musicians with little to no latency. See below for an explanation of Latency
Running "Headless" Linux Jamulus Server
The majority of the servers around the world run Linux as theri server OS. With Ubuntu and CentOS being the two most popular.
You can run your server in one of three "modes" (either locally or on a 3rd party hosted server):
When running on Linux you have a lot more options and can run a server Headless Without a GUI .
- Jamulus (official group) • Great resource for information, tips, and help. Great resources in the files area .
- Installing Jamulus Server on Linux Running a server with the GUI and Headless Without a GUI •
- Jamulus and Temporally Hyper-Near Servers by Andrew Ferguson • There is a section regarding setting up a server using Vultr (cloud servers).
- Remote Band Rehearsals • A lot of information here.
There is a lot of information on the Jamulus GitHub site for figuring out how you want to run your server: Choosing a Server Type
Connect Yourself To Your New Server
Go back to the Jamulus Client and click on "Connect" and enter you new Jamulus Server IP Address.
If your are running a local server on the same computer you can enter localhost: (127.0.0.1) or the Local Computer IP collected in the steps above.
Allowing Others To Connect To Your Server
After they have download the Jamulus software, the client. They need to enter the Public IP of the private server host followed by a colon and the Jamulus Port Number 22124 e.g.: ( 22.214.171.124:22124 ). Your now good to go and jam to your hearts content with little or no latency.
That's it. Anyone you send the IP address to should be able to connect to your private server.
I (Curt) have successfully got a Jamulus Server running locally on my Mac using OS X, filit2 computer running Pop!_OS 20.4 a home and on my Thelio, System76 computer. Pop!_OS is a Linux distribution developed by System76, based on Ubuntu and my "daily driver" Linux OS.
Next step is going "headless" without a GUI.
The “Funky Frets” Jamulus Server • IS NOW LIVE!!!
October 25, 2020 - the Funky Frets/LearningUkulele.com Jamulus Server, a dedicated place for ukulele players worldwide to jam - IS NOW LIVE.
That's it. I'm out of this Rabbit Hole . Sure to find another to descend into.
Visit the NEW Jammin' On-line page for a lot of tips on managing you virtual on-line music experience.
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