Smule and Khush Join Forces

Smule, the awesome music iPhone/iPad app company, has just acquired Khush, the folks behind LaDiDa–you sing, it generates a beat–and Songify–you sing/talk/make noise and it turns the sound into a song.

I love these folks because they’re leading a social movement to bring the world closer together through social music. Everyone can share the gift and that’s why I’m a founding advisor and investor.

You can read their official press release here, and also watch this very funny video on the acquisition, put together by Smule co-founders Ge Wang and Jeff Smith, and Kush co-founders, Parag Chordia and Parna Gupta. They aptly titled it “Smush”:

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

So grateful for friends like you! Check out today’s news from The New York Times on the awesome iPhone app company, Smule.

I’m a board member and investor, and so excited to announce that they now have over 15 million customers online.

What if there was a machine that made you musical? Well, the Times says our founders, Ge Wang, Jeff Smith, and their amazing team did it!

Your Passion Can Change the World

Ge Wang, designer of Ocarina and Leaf Trombone: World Stage for the iPhone, and Magic Piano for the iPad, is using his passion for both music and technology to change the world. In fact, Ge views his revolutionary “apps” as having the potential to bring about a kind of social movement:

“In working with this new technology, there seems to be the ability to bring about a new kind of creative consciousness: with it, we can connect people around the world who didn’t know each other previously and may never have had the chance to know each other. Now they have the opportunity to connect through music and creativity.”

Ge believes firmly that the desire to create and express exists inside everyone: it’s about finding ways to draw it out.

“It just takes the right conditions to unlock people’s inherent creativity. I want people to feel that playing music is as easy as picking up the phone,” he said passionately.

The new social movement is not just about the here and now technology but rather about technology that’s connecting the world, Ge says. His work perfectly demonstrates that when you align your passion with a higher purpose, anything is possible.

Watch the video version of my interview with Ge Wang below–he demos both the Ocarina and the awesome Magic Piano iPad app!


What You Can Learn About Great Products and Stories from Steve Jobs (and Smule)

I was writing an article for the HuffPost the other day about, a company that’s one of the top entertainment iPhone and iPad application developers, and it made me think about what Steve Jobs told me about creating great products for customers. It’s a secret that Steve shared with me ten years ago, when I did an interview with him for


We were talking about the development of Pixar, which was a new company creating new technology at that time. They took the computer business and turned it into something people could personally relate to, and be intimately involved with–all because of their ability to tell stories. Steve basically said that the best thing you can do with technology is make it disappear.


“Pixar has invented a whole new medium of storytelling called computer animation. We’re the mecca for high end computer graphics,” Steve told me.


“However, one of the things that John Lasseter has said, who runs creative at Pixar and is an Academy Award winning director for the Toy Story films, is that no amount of technology can turn a bad story into a good story. Ultimately, what we want is for people to forget about the technology and judge our films based on our storytelling.
The combination of technical and creative brilliance is what makes Pixar so unique, and we hope make our films so unique.”


My HuffPost piece on Steve Jobs here. Watch and listen to my original interview with Steve Jobs in 1999 below: