Breakpoint Jam Atlanta—Virtual Fireworks and iPhone Slide Guitar

The fall tour of the Breakpoint Jam wrapped up at CocoaConf Atlanta with some memorable moments including some iPhone slide guitar and a newly-minted Breakpoint.

Amidst bursts of virtual fireworks, Daniel Steinberg (@dimsumthinking) of Dim Sum Thinking was formally inducted into the Breakpoints.

Daniel joins the fabled group after his stellar performances on slide-advance keyboard as a Conditional Breakpoint during jams across the country this past year.  Congratulations Daniel, thank you and welcome!

Brandon Alexander (@balexander) of Black Pixel brought along his electric guitar and his Mesa Boogie to amp up the jam more than the usual acoustic performance.

The ever-versatile Jonathan Penn (@jonathanpenn) of Rubber City Wizards played guitar, sang backing vocals and played percussion on the cajón—all in his trademark rockstar glasses.

Also sitting in was Conditional Breakpoint Rusty Zarse (@levous) of LeVous and the Atlanta iOS Developers group.  On The Liki Song, Rusty improvised a slide guitar, with his electric in his lap and the edge of his iPhone as the slide. Never have laser-chamfered edges sounded so good!

The performance in Atlanta was the final Breakpoint Jam for the year. We had a lot of fun and would like to thank everyone for the support.  The jams will continue in the new year—we hope to see you at one! •

We are planning Breakpoint Jams at CocoaConf in Chicago, Washington DC, San Jose and Raleigh. Come join the fun and check out the early-bird pricing.

In the meantime, sign up for our newsletter to find out about live shows and music releases. Or show your support with a download from iTunes.

A jar of Breakpoint Jam

Some Sweet Atlanta Jam

Breakpoint Jam Boston — Fall Tour Continues

On an October evening conveniently situated between World Series games, the fall Breakpoint Jam tour continued at CocoaConf Boston.

James Dempsey sings while Daniel Pasco, Ben Scheirman and Jonathan Penn play guitar for the Breakpoint Jam at CocoaConf Boston 2013

The Breakpoints were out in full force for this jam playing a set of James Dempsey and the Breakpoints songs for the crowd:

The evening was also a reunion of old friends with composer Tony Angeles dropping by to sing backing vocals as a Conditional Breakpoint. James and Tony sang together at Penn.

The fall tour rolls on to its last jam of the season this Friday night at CocoaConf Atlanta.

Thanks for all the support so far—we’ve been having fun and hope you have been too! •

In the meantime, sign up for our newsletter to find out about live shows and music releases. Or show your support with a download from iTunes.

A jar of Breakpoint Jam

A bit of Breakpoint Jam

Breakpoint Jam Columbus — Fall Tour Begins

The fall Breakpoint Jam tour kicked off last week at CocoaConf Columbus.

A mix of full and conditional breakpoints joined in to play a set of James Dempsey and the Breakpoints songs for the crowd.

Jonathan Penn (@jonathanpenn) of Rubber City Wizards was inducted as a full Breakpoint following his stellar performance at the Live Near WWDC 2013 show in June.  In Columbus, he donned some shades and jammed on guitar and backing vocals.

The jam also included a few Conditional Breakpoints—folks who jam in the pickup band when they happen to be in town.

Nathan Sjoquist (@nathansjoquist) was on hand, taking a break from iOS development for some guitar and backing vocals.

And finally, on the all-important slide-advance keyboard was keynote speaker extraordinaire, Daniel Steinberg (@dimsumthinking) of Dim Sum Thinking.

The Breakpoint Jam fall tour rolls on to CocoaConf Boston later this month and then CocoaConf Atlanta in November.

Thanks for all the support in Columbus!  And if we’re coming to a town near you, I hope you can join us in Boston and Atlanta!

In the meantime, sign up for our newsletter to find out about live shows and music releases. Or show your support with a download from iTunes.

A jar of Breakpoint Jam

A bit of Breakpoint Jam

Breakpoints Live Near WWDC 2013, Wed 6/12! Save the date!

Update Jun 9, 2013: Daniel Pasco will be joining the Breakpoints on trumpet and guitar!

I’m excited to announce that James Dempsey and the Breakpoints will be performing Live Near WWDC 2013 on Wednesday, June 12th at 7:00 PM.

The show is just a few blocks from Moscone West at 50 Mason Social House. Admission is free—no cover charge and no ticket required. We provide the music, you buy the drinks.

Join fellow iOS and Mac developers for an evening of humorous and informative songs including favorites such as Hold Me, Use Me, Release MeI Love View and Model View Controller.  And don’t miss the live performance of our latest single, that modern tale of momentary loss and redemption, Almost Dropped My iPhone.

Stage and lounge at 50 Mason

The joint will be jumpin’ at 50 Mason

Night Of A Thousand Breakpoints
(Well… at least five or six)

This year, the show features a lineup of Mac and iOS indie developer luminaries and maybe even a special guest or two. The Breakpoints include:

They will be joined by the incomparable Victor Alexander (@victoralexander) on slide-advance keyboard.

No WWDC Ticket Required

The show is open to all—no WWDC ticket required—making it a great event for all developers in town for the week.  There’s not even an NDA, so tell your friends and come on out to James Dempsey and the Breakpoints, Live Near WWDC 2013. •

ics file Download event to your calendar.

 
For show updates and James Dempsey and the Breakpoints news:
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Logo for 50 Mason Social House
50 Mason Social House
50 Mason Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 433-5050

Almost Dropped My iPhone Available on iTunes

Cover art for 'Almost Dropped My iPhone' by James Dempsey and the Breakpoints. A black and white photo showing an iPhone in midair.

Almost Dropped My iPhone, the second single by James Dempsey and the Breakpoints, is now available in worldwide release on iTunes.

Inspired by actual events, Almost Dropped My iPhone captures the full emotional range of this modern tale of momentary loss and redemption.

Listen to an iTunes preview of this fun song that gives voice to an experience shared by millions of people around the world.

Here’s what people are saying about Almost Dropped My iPhone:

“★★★★★ – Fun song about that instant of observed panic when your digital life flashes before your eyes.  Encompasses coffeehouse acoustic folk to barroom guitar licks in just under 3 minutes.  Go ahead, give it a try.  It’ll put a smile on your face, and you might catch yourself humming it later.”
Common Rob

“★★★★★ – Who among us hasn’t been there? James Dempsey and the Breakpoints capture the moment beautifully, with the musical playfulness we’ve come to expect. A great and worthy addition to your Breakpoints collection!”
illium

Almost Dropped My iPhone is available on iTunes.
For more details about the song, liner notes are available here.

Breakpoint Jam Dallas

A jar of Breakpoint Jam

The spring tour continued in Dallas with our second Breakpoint Jam.

There was a mix of ‘conditional breakpoints’ old and new joining in to play a set of James Dempsey and the Breakpoints songs for the crowd:

Next jam is next week at CocoaConf San Jose!

In the meantime, sign up for our newsletter to find out about live shows and music releases.

Nathan Sjoquist, Ben Scheirman, Nathan Eror, Daniel Pasco and James Dempsey at microphones, with instruments, performing.

Dallas Breakpoint Jam with Nathan Sjoquist, Ben Scheirman,
Nathan Eror, Daniel Pasco and James Dempsey
Photo by Solomon Klein

Chicago Breakpoint Jam Recap

A jar of Breakpoint Jam

Last Friday night at CocoaConf Chicago, we had a lot of fun at the first Breakpoint Jam.

Thank you to those who stepped up as ‘conditional breakpoints’ for the evening to play a set of James Dempsey and the Breakpoints songs for the crowd:

The next jam will be at CocoaConf Dallas in early April.  I hope to see you there!

In the meantime, sign up for our newsletter to find out about live shows and music releases.

Introducing the Breakpoint Jam at CocoaConf Chicago

Next week at CocoaConf Chicago, we are doing something new that we’re calling a Breakpoint Jam.

A jar of Breakpoint Jam

Readying our first bit of Breakpoint Jam

A Breakpoint Jam is an ever-changing pickup group performing James Dempsey and the Breakpoints songs.

The idea is simple—whoever is in town for a conference shows up and plays on whatever instruments they’ve brought or borrowed.

The players will change city to city, but the goal is always the same—performing a casual, entertaining jam of songs for conference attendees.

To get things rolling next week in Chicago, we’ve invited conference speakers to the jam.

(Once we get a few under out belt, we’ll open future jams up to attendees.)

I’m looking forward to our first Breakpoint Jam next Friday at CocoaConf Chicago—I hope to see you there! •


Speaking of borrowed: If you are coming to CocoaConf Chicago and are local—Can we borrow your acoustic guitar?

New Breakpoints Song at Renaissance!

James Dempsey and the Breakpoints will be debuting a new song at the Renaissance conference later this month. The song will be part of a noon performance on Wednesday, January 23rd, which will include old favorites along with the new single.

To find out more, I sat down with myself for a fake interview:

Can you tell us a little about the new song?
The new song has a different intent than all the others we’ve done.  Previous songs aimed to teach as well as entertain. This new song keeps to a technology theme, but is meant entirely in good fun.

Why debut the song at the Renaissance conference?
The conference brings together all iOS app builders—developers, designers and business people. It seemed the perfect place to introduce the first James Dempsey and the Breakpoints song that doesn’t require working knowledge of Objective-C or design patterns to fully enjoy.

Will the new song be available on iTunes?
Yes. The Breakpoints have been back in the studio and we’re in the middle of production. We are on track for the single to drop on iTunes as close to the live debut as possible.

What’s the difference between playing live and being in the studio?
Our live performances are acoustic, laid-back and lots of fun—we keep it simple in a live setting. In the studio, we can get more complex with additional tracks and instruments.

How’s the album coming along?
Last year we started recording a decade’s worth of technology songs. We found a great studio, got rolling on recording and laid down a lot of tracks. With this new song, we are back in the studio and working towards finishing the album.  Follow this blog or @jamesdempsey on Twitter to find out the moment there is more news about the upcoming album.

Can you tell us any more about the new song?
After working at Apple for fifteen years, it feels strange to say even this much about something that isn’t released yet. I can say that we’ve definitely enjoyed working on the new song, we think it will bring a smile to people’s faces and we’d love to have as many folks as possible join us for the live show at Renaissance. •

The Renaissance conference is January 21-23 in San Francisco.  Tickets are available here.

To save an additional $100 on registration for Renaissance contact me for a discount code.

Hope to see you at Renaissance

(Jan 3, 2013: Updated ticket price and discount info added to end of post)

Renaissance, the iOS app makers’ conference, is happening in San Francisco from  January 21-23. It looks to be an excellent event and I am excited to be a part of it.

As part of the program, Chris Clark from Square and I will be presenting Beautiful Text, a session covering both design and technical aspects of text in iOS apps.

In addition, Renaissance will feature a special musical performance by James Dempsey and the Breakpoints.

My excitement for the conference goes beyond any particular session. I believe Renaissance will be an experience much greater than the sum of its parts. Here are a few things that have me looking forward to Renaissance:

The lineup of speakers is impressive.  I would go out of my way to hear any number of these folks speak individually. With so many people I respect and admire presenting, the event promises to be something special.

The conference format means that by hearing development, design and business topics woven together in a single track, you can take in everything without missing anything. I think bringing topics together that are often sequestered in separate tracks will spark a lot of interesting ideas.

Finally, I’m looking forward to meeting a lot of great people at the conference.  Twitter, Skype and email can be fantastic ways to keep in touch, but there is something about meeting people in person that has yet to be matched by communication technology.

If you are considering coming to Renaissance, the price goes up on January 1st, so now is a great time to book the ticket.   (Plus, if you live someplace cold and snowy, attending Renaissance can also be the literal rebirth of getting the feeling back in your fingers and toes.)

If you are already coming to Renaissance, please say hello. It would be great to meet you.  I really hope to see you there. •

TICKET UPDATE: The ticket price discount for Renaissance has been extended until January 8th!

ADDITIONAL DISCOUNT: Contact me if you’d like to use my discount code to save an additional $100 on registration for Renaissance.

Renaissance tickets are available here.