Top 6 Most Useful Apps for Guitarists

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With so many apps flying around to aid musicians over the last couple of years, I thought it might be useful to include some here that would be useful to have either as part of a practice session, as a learning tool or to help out at a gig/live performance.  I have purposefully left out any gimmicky ones and apps that you might download, open and then delete because you quickly realise they will be of no use to you at all.  I will update this list as and when other useful apps become available.

 

...don't leave home without one...

 

GUITAR TUNA

by Yousician

Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch

Cost: Free for basic tools, £12.99 to unlock everything, 

This cool little app is a perfect tool for… tuning your guitar!  It boasts as being the most accurate tuner app on the planet and caters for a variety of stringed instruments (although if you want all the tunings available to you, you do have to buy the app, which then opens the whole app to you complete with chord games, chord finder and ear tests).  Guitar Tuna also has a clever background noise cancellation so works fairly well in eliminating the “hub-bub” at gigs.  It also comes with an easy to use metronome (which covers all the main time signatures you are likely to need) perfect for practice sessions.

 

 

...with these next two apps you can say goodbye to tab...!

 

 

MUSIC TUTOR

by JSplash Apps

Compatible with iPhone and iPad

Cost: Free supported by ads, remove ads: £1.99

This is a great sight reading preparation app designed to be played like an old arcade game!  You simply touch “options” and change your preferences such as bass clef, treble clef, the range of notes and the time limits from 1 minute for a quick fire, 5 minutes or 10 minutes for a marathon task.  When you touch “start”, the test then begins.  In-game, you get the choice of “music notes” or “piano keys”.  Seeing as guitarists are often called out for not being able to read music very well, this is perfect for a playing-while-u-wait scenario (such as waiting for a bus).  Your reading skills will improve drastically over a couple of weeks, plus it’s fun to try and beat your record! This is highly recommended.  Combine with the exercises here and you will be a sight reading demon in no time!

by Catloaf Software, LLC

Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

Cost: Free (first 5 frets), £2.99 for unlocking entire fretboard, other in-app purchases.

This app works well in conjunction with Music Tutor and assists you in learning the notes on the fret board, so is perfect when you are away from the instrument.  You can also learn the position of the notes on the musical stave.  It can detect where on the fret board you are weaker and concentrates on these areas.  It comes with only the first 5 frets initially, and then to unlock entire the guitar is just $2.99.  A fast way to learn the notes on the neck of the guitar and well worth the low cost.

...watch those levels...

 

DECIBEL 10 - dBA NOISE METER

by SkyPaw Co. Ltd

Compatible with iPhone and iPad

Cost: Free, In-app upgrades.

Sometimes you have to deal with the nuisance of a sound limiter in a venue.  This is a simple yet effective app that I have used many a time on gigs to make sure the band are within the constraints of the conditions of the venue.  There is nothing worse than the sound limiter cutting out the electricity while you’re playing and while this does not cure the issue, it is certainly a big help.  It is also useful when mixing/mastering/practising so you will suffer less ear fatigue.  You can change the response times from slow to fast, shows the average and max peaks, along with some other features should you wish to delve a little deeper.

 

...a steady horse wins the race with the next one...

 

ANYTUNE PRO+

by Anytune Inc

Compatible with iPhone and iPad

Cost: Free for slowdown and pitch adjustments, £14.99 for pro version, In-app purchases for incremental upgrades.

This app slows down the track as well as changing the key.  But that is only the start.  You can loop sections (with the help of an audio wave image), organize your playlists, and even import audio from video.  The free download comes with the slowdown, pitch adjustments, loop features and lyrics display.  This is a great tool and highly recommended, even just for the basic download version.

 

...and coming soon...

 

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TRINITY ROCK AND POP APP

Ok, so this isn' out yet, but it's worth watching this space.  This is the perfect accompaniment to someone looking to perfect their exam performance.  You can download all the exam songs for your instrument to your phone and practise in a more efficient way.  You can solo instruments, change the mix, but probably most importantly, you can loop sections and change the speed of the track you are working on, and even change the key.  It also includes a count in and a click throughout the track.  You will master that difficult section in no time!  (As soon as it is released I will update).

 

These are some of the most useful apps on my iPhone/iPad and I use them regularly.  I would recommend at least checking them out.  If there are any apps that you have found that are useful, leave a comment!   

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