We are currently working on a submission for the upcoming "No Good Can Come of This" Song Fight, which is due Sunday morning 26JUL2015. I think it's coming along pretty well. One of the things that is really helping me with the song is this new (used) piece of equipment:
It is an Evolution eKeys 49 USB controller that I bought used, super-duper cheap. I plug it directly into my computer and I can use it to control software instruments in GarageBand. Before this controller I was using "musical typing" for software instruments, which involves using the computer keyboard as the controller. To give you an idea, the interface window looks like this:
Musical typing is better than nothing, but it is clunky and far from ideal. It only gives you one and a half octaves, it takes up space on your screen while you're trying to use GarageBand, and of course the feel of the piano/organ keyboard is completely absent. The eKeys 49 is making things a lot easier and more comfortable for me.
In general, buying used electronic musical equipment is not a good idea, especially the way I did it: this type of keyboard doesn't have speakers so there was no way to tell if it worked without plugging it in to a computer (which was not available), and the power cord (9-12V adapter) was not included so it was impossible to check to see whether or not it would even power on. I took a gamble and bought it, found an adapter in the box from my old Fostex 4-track cassette recorder (which I'll never use again anyway), plugged everything in and it worked great. But I realize that was just dumb luck - I cannot recommend that anyone else try the same sort of thing.