Playing Along in iOS GarageBand with the Music App in the Background
Recorded on July 22nd, 2016
I’ve been playing an Alesis Micron keyboard along with some songs in my iPhone iTunes library and using an old Mackie mixer to combine the two signals. I kept thinking that there must be a way to do that without the outboard mixer. There is! GarageBand can run in the background and will accept an audio input, such as that from an IK Multimedia iRig Pro. You can monitor whatever you’re sending to GarageBand and then switch over to the Music app and play existing music tracks. Both apps will continue to play. You just have to enable the “Run in Background” option in GarageBand. Here’s how:
Connect your keyboard or guitar or some external audio source to an audio interface like the iRig Pro. Then connect its Lightning plug to the iPhone.
Use the Audio Recorder function in GarageBand:
- Tap the instrument plug icon in the upper left to get to the Input Settings. Turn on the Monitor:
- In Settings, turn on “Run in Background”:
- Now switch over to the Music app and play a track. Presto — it’s 1985 again and you’re ready to be on the cover of Keyboard magazine: