Online Instruments: What Are The Best Ones & Purpose?
I’ll never forget it.
It was about 10 years ago and Garageband was introduced on an iPad. Being an avid (pun intended for all you ProTools geeks) DAW user for recording, I took a gander and was floored.
There was a guitar that you could strum.
On your iPad.
It was pretty good. Understanding the basics of how these things worked, I played around with it and noticed that it was able to understand dynamics and some basic inflections.
There was a lot of hand-wringing at the time from musicians saying things like “Oh, no one wants to learn an instrument anymore” or “How is that going to work?”
It wasn’t terrible, it also wasn’t great per se. But if you had sort of an idea on how to use it, you could compose a song. Meaning, if you knew what chords to put together, then you could theoretically write a tune.
Years later, online instruments have evolved so much that everything is in our DAW.
I used to have a Rhodes piano and let me tell you… that thing was HEAVY! I can’t imagine a world decades ago where people lugged that around. Well, the software doesn’t weigh anything so you can get the same sound in a pre-programmed keyboard & Rhodes.
I think the most useful and immediately apparent sites are the piano sites. Multiple very interesting sites have virtual, online instruments at the click of a button:
- Virtual Piano:
- Website: Virtual Piano
- Features: This site provides a simple interface for playing the piano using your computer keyboard. It also offers a collection of sheet music for various songs.
- Multiplayer Piano:
- Website: Multiplayer Piano
- Features: As the name suggests, this platform allows multiple users to play the piano simultaneously in real time. Users can join different rooms and collaborate or listen to others play.
- Website: OnlinePianist
- Features: Apart from offering a virtual piano, this website provides interactive piano tutorials for popular songs. It caters to both beginners and advanced players.
- Piano Machine:
- Website: Piano Machine
- Features: A simple online piano tool that also allows users to experiment with various beats and sounds.
- Website: ButtonBass Piano
- Features: This platform offers various virtual instruments, including a piano. Users can create beats, record sequences, and explore a variety of sounds.
- Piano Keyboard Guide:
- Website: Piano Keyboard Guide
- Features: Offers a virtual piano along with lessons, tutorials, and guides on piano chords and scales.
- Recursive Arts Virtual Piano:
- Website: Recursive Arts Virtual Piano
- Features: A real-time, interactive piano simulator. It can be played with the computer keyboard or with a touchscreen.
These websites offer varying features, from basic piano playing to interactive lessons and multiplayer experiences. Whether you’re a beginner wanting to learn or just looking for some musical fun, there’s likely a virtual piano site that fits your needs.
Less interesting and useful are the guitar sites. I am only putting these on here because I am a guitarist and don’t really see the need for it but interesting nonetheless?
- Virtual Guitar:
- Website: Virtual Guitar
- Features: This site provides an interface to play the guitar using your mouse or computer keyboard. It simulates various chords, and users can strum or pluck individual strings.
- Website: JamPlay
- Features: While JamPlay is primarily known for its guitar lessons, it also offers a virtual fretboard tool that allows users to visualize chords and scales.
- Guitar Tuner:
- Website: Guitar Tuner
- Features: This is an online guitar tuner that helps tune your guitar using microphone input. It also provides a virtual guitar to visualize notes and chords.
- Guitar Chord Finder:
- Website: Guitar Chord Finder
- Features: This tool lets you select and listen to various guitar chords. It’s useful for beginners learning new chords or for experienced players looking for specific chord voicings.
- Website: Chordbook
- Features: Offers a virtual guitar interface where users can explore and listen to different chords. The site also provides lessons and tutorials.
- Guitar Flash:
- Website: Guitar Flash
- Features: A fun game that simulates playing a guitar along with various tracks. It’s similar to the popular game “Guitar Hero.”
These websites offer a range of features, from basic guitar playing to chord visualization and interactive lessons. Whether you’re a beginner wanting to learn or just looking for some musical entertainment, there’s a virtual guitar site suitable for your needs.
Daniel Powers Jr, the founder of Real Brave™, serves as the chief inspiration to thousands of students in the Real Brave music instruction program. He’s also the visionary behind PracticePad™, an online platform for live one-on-one online music lessons, lesson tracking, and scheduling. Beyond his entrepreneurial pursuits, Daniel leads a non-profit organization that provides formerly homeless children with access to music education, making a profound impact on their lives. His unwavering dedication to music, innovation, and education continues to inspire individuals to reach their fullest potential while creating positive change in communities.