Last month I posted about iBands and shared some YouTube links of some examples of what an iBand was.
In preparing for my summer piano workshops, I really wanted to try this concept out and have my students put together an iBand. I first asked all my students if they had an “i” device. All except two students did. One borrowed her brothers iPod touch and then the other one used my iPad. I emailed the parents to have their kids download MusicStudio Lite on their “i” device before we met. This app is very similar to Garageband and since it had a “lite” version it was free. Because I only had them for 3 consecutive days and the majority of time for piano camp workshop was focusing on theory, we had limited time. So at the end of the first two class days (they were here for 3 hours each day) I gave them some time to figure out what “instrument” they wanted to play for the iBand and play around with some ideas with rhythm, melody, etc… By day 3 they had a good idea of what they wanted to do and thus the iBand was born.
In this video clip, Foxx Piano Studio Goes iBand, we used the apps Melodica, MusicStudio Lite and Garageband. Melodica and MusicStudio Lite were free and there were two of us that had Garageband. I didn’t want them to have to purchase any apps for this experiment.
We all had a great time putting together the iBand. Students were joking with each other and one asked “What instrument do you play?” and the other responded “The iPad”. All laughed.
I would really like to try this concept again at a group lesson next year. This time I would like to have two piano parts. One doing a melody and the other doing chords.
One thing I noticed is the speakers on the iPad are much better than on the iPhone and especially the iPod touch. So the ideal would be to have either all iPads or external speakers that can plug in the iPhone/iPod touch. I did have one external speaker that I was able to plug in for the “piano” part. I would have loved to have that for some of the others because they were harder to hear, especially the strings.
All in all it was a fun experience! Definitely worth trying in your studio.
P.S. Don’t forget to enter the practice book giveaway, today is the last day to enter! Winner will be announced tomorrow. Click HERE to enter.