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Want Software or App to Help with Scales & Arpeggios

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
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4,369
I have to do scales for the ABRSM exam I am working on at the moment and would love it if there was an App for my iPhone that helped me. Ideally it would:
  • Let you set instrument transposition
  • Let you choose a set of scales and Arpeggios to work on (e.g. in the exam syllabus)
  • Let you set the instrument range to work on (e.g. from saxophone low Bb to high F)
  • Let you set the tempo range to work on
  • Work with swing rhythm as well as straight
  • Generate a request to play a random selection from the available scales
  • Give you a tempo count in
  • Listen to / record your playing and give you an assessment of how correctly you played the right pitches for that scale and how well you kept to tempo

Looking at Apps that I have for metronomes and tuners, this would seem to be perfectly possible, but I haven't found anything out there yet.

Would it be useful and should there be any other functions to make it more useful ?

Do you know of anything similar ?

Rhys
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,369
Check out Jazz Buddy and Music Pro.
Thanks for the suggestions. Is that "Music Theory Pro" ?

I have found apps that tell you what notes are in a given scale, but I want an app that will test how well you already know your scales on your instrument. So the main features will be to ask for a certain scale (e.g "E blues scale in swing rhythm over one octave up and down") and then to listen to how well you play it on your own istrument.

Rhys
 

half diminished

Senior Member
Messages
1,302
Sorry Music Theory Pro. Get your ears working. You should be able to find your way around the major scales, Dom 7s and Dorian minors easily enough after a while. I think the key to this is recognising the intervals and the overall feel of each type of scale. Same for pentatonics both minor and major.

Never use anything written now for scalar workouts. It's all in my head.
 

saxyman

Member
Messages
267
Sorry but I am going to make another plug for Smart Music. Not going into too much detail but if you go on the web you can find out all about it. It shows the notes on the computer and you play along to them then it shows where and when you went wrong or whether you were in time and playing the correct notes etc.
Its all matter of opinion but I find it to help with my playing as its interactive and assesses how well you are doing, I do not move on from one exercise to the next until I can manage 100%. When you do achieve a good assessment you can save it and play it back as well. You can vary tempo and have accompaniment or just your instrument. Personally I think its cheap, you dont buy the programme but pay an annual subscription about £30.
Dave.
PS no substitute for a good teacher though.
 
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Pete C

Member
Messages
344
I agree with Ian on this one - get it in your head. Once you have the sound of a major scale or a dorian mode or a m7 arpeggio or whatever in your head, transpose it through 12 keys, and transposing it through 12 keys is exactly how you get the sound in your head in the first place. You will know when you make a mistake. I can't really see how an app can substitute for that basic type of practise.

Pete
 

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
4,369
Sorry but I am going to make another plug for Smart Music. Not going into too much detail but if you go on the web you can find out all about it. It shows the notes on the computer and you play along to them then it shows where and when you went wrong or whether you were in time and playing the correct notes etc.
I like the look of Smart Music - it certainly seems to have lots of functionality. I have been amazed at what low prices you can pay for really powerful apps on the iPhone (just a few £ for tuner and metronome apps that are much more powerful and flexible than my electronic boxes), so was hoping I could get something handier for this specific purpose.

I agree with Ian on this one - get it in your head. Once you have the sound of a major scale or a dorian mode or a m7 arpeggio or whatever in your head, transpose it through 12 keys, and transposing it through 12 keys is exactly how you get the sound in your head in the first place. You will know when you make a mistake. I can't really see how an app can substitute for that basic type of practise.

Pete
I didn't express myself very well. What I want isn't to teach me the scales and arpeggios (I know I have to put in the work myself on how they are constructed and how to play them on my instrument): it is to do the testing part after learning, to confirm that I really have absorbed them and can play them accurately on demand. This is what I will have to do in an exam, so I want to prepare in a similar way.

By the way, I think I know all my majors, dominants, pentatonics (major and minor) and major and minor arpeggios. But do I ?

Rhys
 
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