Music Apps

I love how we are each starting to share stories about the apps we have found and how we are using them.  I can imagine that our ArtEducator 2.0 participants will search this blog in the future to get advice on which things to try and which to avoid.  Its great to be doing this kind of inquiry in a visible way – as we are impacting iPad use beyond our small circle.

In my regular scan of free apps, I have downloaded quite a few free “music” related apps.  I haven’t seen anyone post on music apps yet – so I thought I’d follow Camille’s lead and share two snapshots of the music apps I have loaded on my iPad at the moment.  I’ll blog just a bit about my favorites as well.

Free Instrument Apps
HD was a hit at the ISTE digital arts playground – letting folks hold the iPad like it was a guitar and strum on basic chords.  iShred LE is the electric guitar equivalent.    Celtic Harp Lite, sounds just like the real thing and lets you actually play several free songs. Imagine using an iPad in the music classroom to accompany students, or to teach basic instrument skills!

Along those lines, there are several free keyboard apps.  So far I’ve added: JamPad, MusicalTouch (now $0.99 as of this posting) and Vituoso, as tools to just play a traditional piano keyboard on the iPad.  Each has its own features, so you’ll want to weigh the differences yourself.  VoiceKeyboard lite actually has the ability to record your playing – which could really be of use in the music classroom.  Just plain silly (and fun in my book) are CatPiano Jr. and DogPiano Jr. which do exactly what you’d expect them to do – play in cat and dog voices.

If you want to check out apps for learning musical instruments, I’ve found Guitar Lab (now $0.99 as well) and iPiano Lessons so far.  I imagine more apps for music instruction are on their way.

There are many free apps that come up when you search the app store for terms related to music.  Many are game-like, or allow music creation in unique and creative ways.  Included on my iPad desktop screenshots are: Beat Tap Lite, BeatWave, Digi_HD_Lite, GrooveMaker, MixxMuse DJ HD, PatternMusic, PolyRhythms (now $2.99), TapTap Radiation, Soundrop, and SoundSketch (now $0.99) to name a few.

Many of these “freebies” are scaled down versions of paid apps – so don’t be disappointed if you can’t do what you want to with them. The free “lite” versions are often a great way to try out apps before purchasing them, if you haven’t figured that out yet.  As you can see, some of the apps which were free to me, are now paid apps, so it is worth it to search for new free apps on a regular basis as well.

Paid Instrument Apps
I’ve bought a few paid apps including, BowlsHD ($3.99), Marimba ($0.99), and Odd:Hang ($0.99).  Bowls lets you play traditional Tibetan singing bowls, while Odd:Hang are a modern equivalent to the steel drum.  Marimba is just what its name implies.  They each are really nice equivalents for the real instruments and might make an interesting addition to the music classroom.

One paid app I added this weekend was Glee.  Created by Smule, the folks who made the iPhone Occarina app (which works on the iPad), Glee is like karaoke for your iPad.  There are only 3 free songs – but more bizzarely – you can listen to people singing into their iPads live, from all over the globe.  I can imagine that this would be a fun party use of the iPad!

I look forward to seeing what other musical apps folks have found so far that they can recommend!

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2 Responses to Music Apps

  1. coryarts says:

    Thanks for some great tips Mara!

  2. You’re welcome Cory. I have had fun making the “free” part of my exploration of the iPad – considering we are working with educators. There certainly are lots of decent choices out there for freebies – and I do love the idea of the free scaled down apps letting us, in effect, try before we buy.

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