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The best music learning apps for Android
Learning music is a lifetime pursuit. The best musicians are still learning new things, even going on into old age. Thus, there is no quick and clean solution to learning music. It takes consistent practice and patience. Your phone can help with this. There are a variety of consistent tools that you can use to make your music education better. Here are the best Android apps for learning music.
The best Android apps for learning music
Amazon Kindle (or other ebook readers)
Price: Free / Varies
Amazon Kindle or other ebook reader services are a great way to start learning music. There is an endless stream of books, manuals, and lessons in book format. You can buy and download the books right to your phone and read them or reference them there. Some types of music books, like guitar tab books, are physical-only, but we think it’s better that way anyway.
Google Play Books and Barnes & Noble Nook are viable alternatives if you don’t want to go with Amazon. All three platforms should have more or less the same overall selection so the one you go with comes down to preference.
Price: Free / Varies
Coursera is an educational app that offers online courses for a price. Usually, people recommend this for job skills, training in things like Photoshop, or other, more professional pursuits. However, it does have courses that teach music theory, beginner’s guides on how to play various instruments, and more music-related courses. They vary in size, complexity, and price, but it’s a nice way to get a more traditional class-style education on the topic.
There are a few competitors in this space. Udemy, Skillshare, edX, Alison, and even LinkedIn Learning offer music courses. Much like the ebooks section above, the one you choose comes down to preference since much of the content is similar.
Complete Music Reading Trainer
Price: Free with in-app purchases
Complete Music Reading Trainer helps you learn how to read traditional sheet music. It’s a difficult task to learn, but one that is useful for the entirety of your music experience. The app uses a gamified approach similar to other learning apps like Duolingo. You perform short exercises over and over again until the information sticks.
The developer also has a couple of other music learning apps. They include Complete Rhythm Trainer and Complete Ear Trainer. They work similarly and can help hone your music skills even more.
Price: Free trial / $19.99 per month / $149.99 per year
Fender Play is a music learning app. It has lessons for acoustic guitar, electric guitar, ukulele, and bass. It’s a straightforward kind of experience. The app houses a bunch of lessons that help you start out completely fresh and work your way up to a competent musician. It teaches fingering techniques, chords, scales, and more. It also incorporates learning popular music into things, so it’s not just you practicing scales all day. We liked that extra bit, even if it probably contributes to Fender Play’s high price tag.
There are other options in this space. Ultimate Guitar is a popular option. Simply Guitar is another one. Those looking for a more hands-off approach can also try GuitarTuna, which has basic, albeit monotonous, chord trainers.
Google Maps is a bit of a lame pick, but it is useful for budding musicians. The obvious reasons are to find gear shops in your area as well as schools or teachers to teach you music in person. It’s not a bad idea to have an in-person teacher for more complex instruments. You can also use it to get a hold of establishments to book gigs one day if you ever find yourself in a band or otherwise ready to perform. Again, we recognize that it seems lame, but it’s a legitimately good idea to know where to go locally if you need something.
Price: Free trial / $9.99 per month / $69.99 per year
MuseScore is a sheet music app. It’s similar to a tab book for guitarists, but it uses traditional sheet music instead. You can find all kinds of music there. It also includes some help in learning how to read standard notation. There is sheet music for a wide variety of popular instruments. What makes this one special is that music is uploaded by MuseScore users. Thus, you can find a lot of stuff you normally wouldn’t be able to find.
There aren’t really many apps in this space, and MuseScore is easily more plentiful than the others. It helps with learning sheet music, but the real enjoyment here comes after you finally learn how to do it and can start sight reading sheet music.
Price: Free with in-app purchases
Perfect Ear is a music training app that helps you learn a bunch of music stuff. It learn heavily on ear training, where you can tell what notes are being played by listening to them. There are also rhythm training exercises, music theory articles, sight read training, and a scale dictionary. It’s not class-oriented like some others and comes closer to Complete Ear Trainer in terms of how it works.
The developer also has Clefs, a music reading trainer so you can learn how to read standard music notation for sure when using apps like MuseScore. Some parts of the apps are free, but eventually, you have to start paying to unlock modules in the app.
Price: Free / $149.99 per year
Simply Piano is a good app for learning piano. It helps you learn the basics, like which keys are which notes, and then goes on to teach sheet music reading, chords, and scales. It uses the gamified style of many learning apps where you learn in easily digestible lessons that you then practice and master later. It also includes learning an occasional pop song to shake up the monotony of practicing scales all day. It’s a bit expensive, but it seems like the good music learning apps are.
Some other good apps in this space include Flowkey and Piano Academy. They all get the job done, so choosing comes down to how you want to be taught.
Price: Free / $29.99 per month / $139.99 per year
Yousician is a music learning app for a few different instruments, including guitar, piano, ukulele, and bass. It’s also one of the few apps that helps you learn how to sing better. The lessons are short, easily digestible, and repeatable. That should help you grasp each concept before moving on to the next one. There are some free lessons to get you started, but eventually, you do have to pay for them. It’s a bit expensive, but it’s still cheaper than a teacher, even if we think in-person teachers are better overall.
Yousician doesn’t have a lot of competition in this space if you want to learn how to play an instrument and sing. Individual instruments have competitors and we have a few listed above if you want to try them out.
Price: Free / $12.99 per month
YouTube is an excellent source for free music lessons. You can find all kinds of stuff there, including lessons, music theory, music history, tips and tricks, and more. Many musicians will also upload covers of songs along with sheet music, making YouTube a great source of sheet music if you know where to look. YouTube has annoying ads, but it’s entirely free to use, making it a good starting place for beginner musicians on a budget. Watch a video about playing a scale, then practice the scale until you’re good at it. Easy stuff.
The downside is that YouTube has all kinds of videos without much in terms of quality filtering. Thus, it may take you a few minutes to find some creators that do good lessons. Otherwise, it’s definitely a good tool to have.
If we missed any big video compression apps, tell us about them in the comments. You can also click here to check out our latest Android app and game lists.