I found this amazing app – yousician.
It is fabulous! I bought myself a ukulele about a year and a half ago and have been noodling around on it, taking it on holiday and playing a few times a month. My focus has been on my flute and the ukulele was just something for fun.
And it has been, but because it has been so sporadic I forget things and end up starting again each time I pick it up, which has meant that I haven’t wanted to pick it up. And so a vicious cycle ensues quite quickly. I haven’t wanted to pay for lessons because I have flute lessons each week and there is only so much money to go around.
And then I found Yousician.
I love it! I have been playing each day and I have made more progress in the week that I have had it than the whole year and a half previously. It looks very much like Guitar Hero in the way that it works. There are levels to work on, stars and badges to achieve. It is a perfect example of the concept of gamification. And I do like a structured learning environment with things to achieve.
I have to say I have never understood Guitar Hero – for pretty much the same money as GH costs you could have got yourself a guitar or uke and learnt to play an actual, real instrument.
Looking through the reviews on iTunes I was APPALLED by one person’s review who complained that the free version limited you to approximately twenty minutes a day and you had a couple of thirty-second adverts for the premium version of the app during that twenty minutes too. This reviewer felt this was unacceptable.
I was spitting feathers at this, I cannot imagine what the poor developers made of it. There must be hundreds of hours gone into the programming of this app, let alone the skillful musical teaching skills. It is incredibly well scaffolded (i.e. skills build on what was taught before, increasing a step at a time), the way it is built makes you want to continue and the music you are playing along to is great too.
I guess this is the new world. People expect to be able to access content for free – all content on the internet should be free. Of course this doesn’t take into account the hours that people spend developing their skills, let alone how long it takes for the product/service to be developed. Also creatives have rent to pay and get hungry like everyone else.
I have already gladly paid out for the premium version of this app, it’s £15 per month, or even less if you buy an annual pass. A half hour lesson costs with a teacher would cost that, or even more.
If you want to play the uke, guitar or piano for fun then this is perfect for you. If you want to learn classical, or play seriously then I think you need a teacher – but fun? Yeah, go for it!
BTW there is no affiliate link. I am genuinely enthralled by this app.