Apps that try to teach you to play an instrument seem to be a dime a dozen these days. Most of them tend to be rather thinly written and difficult to follow, or at the very least fail to teach all of the necessary skills, opting instead to gloss over things and provide the bare minimum required to teach the skills. A few apps in the guitar category do it right though, and Rock Prodigy by The Way of H, Inc. is one that seems to be off on the right foot. I admit to being the world's worst guitar player, and although I can play almost every instrument there is, strings have always stymied me. Did Rock Prodigy manage to teach me how to play the guitar? Read on to find out.
Recently MakeMusic released its new SongBook music reader app for the iPad. The app has been expected for many months now, ever since it was first announced back in January of 2012. Back then I wrote that I was looking forward to seeing the finale format music notation app, now known to be called SongBook, and recently was able to put it through its paces. My first impression, good but still lacking in a few key areas. Read on to find out more.
I've looked at quite a few Recorder training apps in the last few months. All have promised to easily teach a person to play the recorder with a minimum of effort. I've been sadly dissapointed with most of them but today I had the chance to look at the AtPlayMusic Recorder app. For once I actually enjoyed playing through the app and I was impressed with how they progressed through the instruction. Read on to find out what I liked and why this could spell the beginning of some very good future offerings from the same company.
Tenuto is a very well done offline music theory training tool for the iPad. Based on the very popular browser based apps on MusicTheory.net, Ricci Adams has ported these online versions to the iPad, making them much more easily used in small group and classroom lesson settings.
Based on the content Adamâ€™s originally wrote for his musictheory.net web site the Theory Lessons iPad app offers a handy reference for use in a classroom music setting. Each of the thirty nine lessons offers a textual and graphical explanation of various concepts of music theory. The lessons themselves are grouped into categories beginning with The Basics and moving on to sequenced instruction on concepts such as Rhythm and Meter, Scales and Key Signatures, Intervals, Chords, Diatonic Chords, Chord Progressions, and Neopolitan Chords.
SheetMuse is a handy little free sheet music storage app, but people that have large collections of scores or require the ability to write notes in the music should probably look elsewhere. Read on for the full review.
Saxophone master Walter Beasley has released a pair of iPhone apps dedicated to his chosen instrument. These instructional video apps contain over 80 minutes of video instruction on the saxophone taught by Beasley and feature short clips of him demonstrating the various concepts and techniques. The first of the two apps titled Sound Production For Saxophone deals with concepts ranging from basic embouchure to diaphragmatic breathing and basic practice tips.
The second app, titled Circular Breathing, deals with exactly that, and is described in detail in about thirty minutes worth of videos. All aspects of learning and developing circular breathing are presented and are done with the help of visual demonstrations showing how the process really works.
As an educational tool the videos are quite informative and present their points well. Any novice saxophone student would most likely benefit from viewing the Sound Production videos while more advanced students or those interested in playing around with circular breathing would benefit from the latter.
It used to be that a person would carry around multiple devices to practice their instrument or to teach a music class. Things like a metronome, a digital audio recorder, a tuner, etc. are all essential parts of a musicians arsenal. With the introduction of the iPhone and iPad you can get rid of all of those individual devices but yet many people still wind up buying a different app for each of those independent needs. Enter APS MusicMaster Pro, an iPad app that combines everything you need into one multi-purpose application. The brainchild of Joeseph Pisano of Grove City College, APS MusicMaster Pro combines not just the three devices mentioned previously but a total of ten different useful music education tools.
Musicopolous is an iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad app that is intended to help the user practice music theory skills, mostly related to building scales, intervals, and chords as well as sight reading skills such as identifying the names of key signatures and note names when shown on the grand staff. For this review the app was tested on an iPhone 4. How did it measure up to the competition? Read on to find out.
Guitarists rejoice! Thanks to the Amplitube app for iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch you can now take all of your favorite effects pedals, amps, and cabinets with you without the need to lug around a suitcase full of equipment. The Amplitube app works together with a $40 accessory called the iRig that when plugged between your iPad and your guitar will add any desired effects to the sound before sending it out to your amplifier.