3 essential types of apps for DIY music lessons

Mobile apps can improve DIY music lessons immensely. Plus, with these apps you can work on your songs from anywhere. Essential music apps are those that will help you tune your instrument, provide chords for reference and, of course, edit your audio. Here's what you need to know as you look for these apps.

3 essential types of apps for DIY music lessons

Picking a tuning app

Tuning apps help you get your instrument in tune better than tuning by ear alone. Of course, as with most apps, there are different options available when you're looking for a tuning app.

Some apps will play the note to you and you have to use your ear to determine if what you're tuning matches that note. While this is great for training your ear, it's not for everyone.

If you're not too worried about training your ear, a good tuning app will use a microphone (built into your device or plugged in) to pick up the note you're plucking. Then it will tell you whether that string is in tune, which is especially useful if you want to set your instrument to an alternate tuning.

Finding a great audio editing app

Most mobile devices come with a voice recorder, so find an audio editing app that will let you upload your recordings and apply some simple edits to them.

In most cases these simple edits include cutting pieces out, removing background noise, recording directly to the app, adding effects, and layering recordings. Most editing apps wil also let you share your recordings with others.

If the recording app you choose is a cloud-based app, then even better! Cloud connectivity means you can transfer your edited recording to another device with ease.

So, if you use an editing app that connects to the cloud you could record that blast of inspiration on your phone during your morning walk, do a preliminary edit at the park and send it to your laptop to be worked on more when you get home.

Apps with chords

Some apps will provide you with chord sheets for your reference.

DIY music lessons benefit from chord sheets in that you can teach yourself the finger positions of the chords yourself.

But, keep in mind that since instruments can be tuned to completely different tunings, the chords will change with each tuning. This change happens because each string resonates to a different note and the frets you press down will now play different notes corresponding to that first note.

To help you keep your chords straight across different tunings, try to find an app that includes chords for different tunings. If you can't find one, an app for standard tuning is also useful.

Find the right app for your needs

When choosing apps for your DIY music lessons, look at the ratings and comments. And remember that you can always uninstall the app if it's not for you.

Also, if you're trying out a few apps before deciding which you like best, it's a good idea to pick free apps. Later on, you can always buy the ad-free version.

Whether free or a few dollars, though, the right apps for your needs are a worthy investment. After all, they allow you to create music, fine-tune it and record it all on your mobile device.

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