Below is a fairly comprehensive list of the apps we use in both classroom, instrumental teaching and SEN/D settings. We have listed them in order of how much we use them, so if you only have time to download a few, start at the top of the list and work down!
The list was prepared as part of our CPD programme.
Garageband Songwriting app with virtual instruments, sequencer and easy to use sampler.
Thumbjam Powerful instrument emulator.
Madpad Video sampler.
Loopseque Cyclical beat-maker with fantastic potential for exploring rhythm.
Loopy & Everyday Looper Two sophisticated live loopers, each with unique merits.
Impaktor Uses theiPad microphone as a contact mic, turning any surface into a drum. Headphones required.
Pinnacle Studio A video making app similar to iMovie. Great for adding images to compositions.
Notion Music Create and play sheet music.
Beatsurfing Link with Thumbjam to create your own playing surface. Endless possibilities.
Audiobus Links apps together, e.g. record something you are playing in Thumbjam into Garageband.
For pupils with Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities (PMLD) and others:
Thumbjam Powerful instrument emulator. Change the ‘span’ and controls to give player access to multiple controls (volume, vibrato, pitch bend)
Bebot Polyphonic synth with fantastic sounds and more depth than first appears.
Bloom Create calming sound and colour scapes with app co-created by Brian Eno.
Aquasonic Similar to Bloom, but with water background. Shake to
make the water move.
Madpad Video Sampler.
Beatwave Create layers of melodies by using a grid system. Pupil needs
to have good grasp of cause and effect for this one to be meaningful, but
it sounds great.
Thicket Moody and very visual soundscape creation that some pupils
love (and some can’t stand).
Soundprism Virtual organ with big playing surface. Good for
using in duets with a melody app like Bebot.
Airvox Uses the iPad camera to generate pitches based on the distance
between you and the iPad. Time needs to be spent adjusting the parameters.
EZ Voice/Singaling These two apps work with a microphone (this could
be the iPad microphone) to add effects, including delay, reverb and harmonies, to the voice. EZ voice is more powerful but slightly more fiddly.
Soundscape Turns audio from the microphone into images, similar to visualisations on Windows Media Player
For all other SEN/D Settings (including SLD, MLD, EBSD etc)
Garageband Songwriting app with virtual instruments, sequencer and
easy to use sampler.
Loopseque Cyclical beat-maker with fantastic potential for exploring
Figure Intuitive dance music creator.
Launchpad Easy to use sample sets.
Loopseque Kids As above, but more child-friendly interface and
Drumjam Cousin of Thumbjam, easily drag in instruments to create a
groove then improvise on top with a range of great sounds.
Record and reflect
Music Memos (Free) One touch recording, adds bass and drums. (iOS)
Camera (Free) Insight into pupils’ practice approach and environment. demonstrate progression. (All)
Create Backing Tracks
Garageband (Free) Pupil-friendly interface for sequencing and recording backing tracks. Full guide to the app with our book. (iOS)
iReal Book (£13) Lead sheets for Jazz and pop standards. (All)
Chordbot (£5) Quickly create sets of chord progressions. (All)
Explore improvisation (test out scales)
Thumbjam (£9) Test out scales and effects. (iOS)
Loopy (£4) Layer melodies. (iOS)
Sight Reading/Aural training
Rhythm Cat (Free) Fun rhythm games for all ages. (All)
Treble Cat (Free) Game for identify pitches. (All)
Ear Wizard (Free) Chord progressions. (iOS)
Spotify (Free/£9.99p/m) Create playlists, share musical ideas, especially for improvisation. (All)
Anytune Lots of practice tools – Change pitch, speed, loop sections and much more. (All)
Instuner (Free) Tuner. (All)
Internet/Google Drive/Dropbox/Camera (Free) Capture, organise, store and easily share sheet music. (All)