The Library

The idea for this page is to give you some suggestions for useful books, not just about iOS music making (although they happen to be first), but also more generally about MIDI, Synthesis, recording and other topics that will be useful to you.

I hope you find these suggestions useful, but if you think there are any books I should add then please let me know.

iOS Music Making books:

  • Drone, Glitch and Noise: Making Experimental Music on iPads and iPhones (on Amazon) by Apptronica
  • iPad Music School: A Hands-On Introduction to Making Music on iOS (on Amazon) by Apptronica
  • iPad and iPhone For Musicians For Dummies: (iTunes, Amazon), one of those dummies guides on iOS music making. Possibly a good place to start out if you’re new to iOS music making


  • Paul White’s Basic MIDI (iBooks / Amazon) guide, takes you through every aspect of MIDI and is probably a lot more than you need
  • David Miles Huber’s ‘The MIDI Manual’ (iBooks / Amazon) is probably a lot more than most people need, but is a very complete reference guide book on the subject


  • How to Make a Noise: iPad Synthesizers Edition (iBooksAmazon), this is from 2011 so not too up to date sadly. However, Simon Cann has written a few other books about synthesis which are more general and can be appied on a general principles basis. For example:
    • How to Make a Noise: Frequency Modulation Synthesis (iBooks / Amazon)
    • How to Make a Noise: Analogue Synthesis (iBooks / Amazon)
    • How to Make a Noise: Sample-Based Synthesis, (iBooks / Amazon)
    • and Becoming a Synthesizer Wizard. (iBooks / Amazon)

If you’re looking to build your own stuff then these books might be useful:

General Inspiration:

One of the books I’ve found very useful is 74 Creative Strategies for Electronic Music Producers. Although I think it’s actual title is just Making Music, which isn’t terribly helpful actually. It’s a very good source of inspiration and a way of changing direction when you’re not entirely sure about what to do next. Of course not all of it will be useful to everyone, but it’s most certainly worth the money in my opinion.

Other useful series:

Paul White (who wrote Basic MIDI) has a useful series on iBooks which includes Basic Mixing Techniques, Basic Home Studio Design, Basic Live Sound, Basic Effects and Processors, Basic Digital Recording, Basic Mixers, Basic VST Instruments, Basic Sampling, Basic VST Effects, and Basic Multitracking. All of these are worthwhile to a degree and worth a look if any of these subjects is something you need to know about.

If you have any suggestions about books you’ve found useful then please do let me know as I’d like to add them here. Also if you have any other suggestions for this page please let me know.