Music is often seen as the art-form that most frequently utilizes the cutting edge of modern technology in its performance. Most popular modern-day musicians are as reliant on Logic Studio as they are on a recording studio, and as skilled at operating arpeggiators as they are at playing arpeggios.
But if you are a musician of the more traditional type, the outlook is somewhat different. Instrument design has been adapted only marginally in three hundred years, and most dedicated musicians still go to music shops to buy manuscript in print. Why? Because, as yet, technology simply hasn’t been able to compete with the usability of paper. The opportunity to scribble notes on the music, the ease of page turning, and, of course, the lack of concern over battery life, remain as factors that trump any conveniences technology has to offer.
What if an app could solve some of these issues? That’s what Tonara is aiming to do. Along with a large library of purchasable music, Tonara offers performance recording, automatic page turning and manuscript annotation. But is this enough to outweigh the benefits of the traditional, tried and tested medium?
As excited as we get about apps that raise the bar for professionals, the iPad has always been respected as a tool for educators and their students, and this applies to the musical space as much as any other. Back in July, Nathan Snelgrove took a look at a new app from MiQ Limited designed to help budding musicians wrap their heads around some of the theoretical underpinnings of good songwriting.
I found Jamn to be a superb tool for picking up chord theory and kickstarting your songwriting, and the latest update brings with it a brand new feature that builds on the visual learning methods of the first. Is it enough to make Jamn the de-facto app for iPad songwriters? Let’s find out!
Little-known fact about me: back in my high school days, I used to be the frontman for a hard rock band. The band fell apart, as most high school rock bands do, shortly after we all started going to university and college. I didn’t play guitar for a while, but I’ve been flirting with the idea of starting up a solo indie project with just me and my acoustic. The real problem, apart from no possibility of success and the utter likelihood of failure, is that I often have trouble cracking down the whip and writing music.
Jamn aims to fix that problem for me. I’ve tried a lot of apps meant to help floundering musicians, but none of them work on either a visual or musical level. Most of them are ripoffs sold based on empty promises. Initially, I was worried Jamn would be the same way. I was wrong. Read on to see what makes this app so compelling for musicians. (more…)