Essential iPad Apps For Marching Band Directors (during the prep for marching season)

Are you a Marching Band Director with an iPad? Well then you are probably working through much of the same preparation as I am. How does my iPad help me in all of this craziness?

DRILL PREP:
In the prep of the drill I have my iPad on the entire time even though I am writing drill in Pyware 3D. On the iPad I use UnRealBook Small IconUnRealBook or ForScore Small IconForScore or possibly even GigBook Small IconGigBook to display my music. I also use the annotation tools in those apps to write on top of my music all of the drill chart pages and instructions. I can not imagine going back to paper music and having to write al of this in, copying the scores, inserting into sheet protectors, using three ring binders and then just waiting for that rain to wreck it all!

If you have an iPad and you are NOT using one of these three apps along with PDF’s for you sheet music you need to go get on this task right now! These apps are some of the apps that have been on my iPad since I bought the first iPad on the day it was released! In fact, as a music teacher, this is THE reason I bought that iPad1! Which of the three should you start with? Pick one…. seriously…

DRILL CHARTS:
I have a new app that I think is going to be amazing this year – DrillBook Next Small IconDrillBook Next is $9.99 for the Directors version of the app that I just discovered this year. After creating the drill in P3D I then simply export performer coordinate sheets which I then import into DrillBook Next – giving me my entire drill in interactive format on my iPad!

Students can also easily use the app as well – BONUS: they can use it on DrillBook Next Small IconDrillBook Next Reader for iPad ($4.99), DrillBook Next Small IconDrillBook Next Reader for iPod ($2.99) or even Android ($2.99) as well as on a desktop computer (on the computer it’s free, yup, FREE!)

The only thing missing here is being able to watch my drill and have it synced to music. After talking to Scott – the developer – though, I fully understand the copyright issues this would cause with the way access to the drill works.

MUSIC SCORES CREATION and EDITING:
I have not convinced myself to go iPad on this front while creating and editing my musical notation files yet. I have ordered my Notion5 though for desktop and am committing to digging in and learning Notion this year. I mean, come on! There is a full fledged desktop AND iPad app available for Notion Small Icon Notion! Yes, I could work with NoteFlight but Notions excellent sound have won me over!

Currently my workflow is to create and edit in Sibelius then export to Avid Scorch Small Icon Avid Scorch. I also export PDF files to use in ForScore or UnRealBook. I will say that when I use Scorch I find one extra step is needed to make great use of the size of the iPad. If I just open the full score there is always too much info on the screen. On the desktop I simply focus on select staves and all is well. In fact if you save your Sibelius file with it focused on those select staves then when you email it to yourself and open it in Scorch it will stay focused! My problem is that I want to also have a DrumLine condensed score I can jump back and forth between. Well…. here’s your Sibelius Tip of the week – I wrote this Blog Post back in Aug 2012 and I use it all the time because of dumping scores over to the iPad. This Blog Post will show you how to set up condensed scores so that they are just a tap away, just like you can quickly jump to any other part in the score.

Of course I also have to have a metronome app while arranging music – I find that I have used Tempo Small IconTempo the most of all my metronome apps. It works on my iPad as well as my iPhone. It looks great on both. This is not a metronome designed for the iPhone that I have to use in 2x mode, it was designed for both devices screen sizes.

MUSIC RECORDINGS (of our show):
CLICK TRACK CREATION – For each of my marching show pieces I always add in a click track at least for an intro measure. That way we are not guessing when the recording is going to start as we rehearse. In order to do that GarageBand small iconGarageBand works fine.

MultiTrack DAW small iconMultiTrack DAW or Cubasis small iconCubasis would work too. The process is simple – Import the recording, create another track with drums in it and record a few measures of you tapping along to the recording. Move that audio to the beginning and export the new file.

Remember – These apps would also give you an excellent way to record your groups for evaluation later! UnRealBook and ForScore allow you to record rehearsals (or whatever) while you are viewing your PDF music even!

REHEARSAL with those recordings – One of my essential apps for marching band rehearsal is AnyTune Icon SmallAnyTune Pro+. We use this app constantly all season long so we can rehearse our marching skills to a recording of the show. AnyTune Pro+ allows us to set book marks so we can quickly jump to any place in the song we want. We can slow the music down and we can even loop a section if we want to go through it a few times. In fact, if you are only going to by one app this fall this just might be your best choice!

MUSIC RECORDINGS (of any song):
I of course use my iTunes app and library to play music for the students over AirPlay – AirServer App works wonders for not having to have wires connected!

I have also started using SpotifySpotify. On the iPad it is amazing the music you have available at your fingertips FOR FREE! There is so much educational music on there it astounds me – soloists for all instruments, classical, jazz, brass band, pop and whatever else you want.

RECORD KEEPING:
I use FileMakerGo Small IconFileMaker on my desktop and iPad all the time. I have created databases in FM that save me a ton of time every year. Want a roster of my class, tap that button. Oh, you want it sorted by instrument? No problem. What about if you want a list of your band sorted by gender but then also broken down by grade level and then sorted by last name? Every year you have to order shoes? Not a problem, here is the list…. same with shirts…. and by the way I grouped the kids names by size of course!

The drawback to FileMaker is that you have to create the database on the desktop FIRST! Then it can all be transferred and worked with on an iPad or iPhone. Of course if you have a friend that has designed a database maybe they would be nice enough to share! But seriously, go buy a database and STOP USING SPREADSHEETS! There are a few very useful sample databases that come with the download of the free iOS FM13 App. The real fun is when you can edit those to make them work in ways to benefit you and your program.

DropBox Small IconDropBox is also an essential place for me to share files with students like music arrangements as they become available or PDF’s of the drill charts (although with DrillBook Next, I think PDF drill charts are going bye-bye!)

We also use DropBox to store all of the registration and medical forms for all the kids. They send it to us, we scan it and upload it to DropBox. From there my entire staff has access to important information. DROPBOX TIP – We will also make sure to download those files to our devices so we can have access when there is no network at camp, on trips or God forbid in the hospital.

SOCIAL MEDIA:
I try really hard to keep my blog up to date on wordpress by using Blogsy Small IconBlogsy. Blogsy is heads and tales better then the WordPress App. When my students are blogging I suggest they use the WordPress app because it is free and it does actually work (most of the time).

I also have a band Twitter, FaceBook and YouTube.

CALENDAR:
The Apple Calendar app is basic as is the Reminders app. The benefit to using those two apps is that I use SIRI to interact with my schedule all the time.

When I actually need to open an app though I use Calendars 5Calendars 5 or Fantastical Small IconFantastical – a huge step up from the other apps!

I also love using GoodTask Small IconGoodTask for my reminders (you know, this might need to be your one MUST buy app for the fall… hmmm….)

 

This is just a blog post to get started with ideas of how essential tech is in a Band Directors life during Marching Season

You Have To Go Slow To Go Fast!

Time stops for no one!

Time stops for no one!

That is what I tell my band students all the time. We are gonna have to make some bad sounds in order to sound good. This is what I tell my band students all the time in rehearsals.

This also applies to using tech in the classroom. It takes some serious time invested in getting my iPad setup and ready for use in teaching. The first reason I bought an iPad for, on the first day they were released, was to put all my music on it in PDF format. That way I did not have to lug around folders and folders of scores plus it would also mean I did not have to go searching to find the correct scores in the middle of rehearsal.

So here is the process and why I say it takes time, a lot of time!

  1. Pick the music out
  2. Pull one original of every part out along with the score
  3. Take those down to the copy room and scan them (we call this process “digitizing the music”. I say we because thankfully I have students helpers that help out here.
  4. Once scanned it shows up in my email. I open that attachment and rename it then save it into DropBox. Since Mavericks has been released this process is a tad easier. I double click that attachment and once it opens I can rename the PDf, Tag it (love those tags!), and choose where to save it to right from the top menu bar on the PDF. (If I open that email on my iPad then I use the Open In menu to open that PDF attachment in the DropBox app. That way I can file it and rename the file right away. That also allows me to access the PDF file from any other app on the iPad)
  5. The next step is to open UnReal, GigBook, or ForScore on my iPad. I then access DropBox from ForScore and import the files that I need.
  6. The next step is to make a set list for each band that I conduct and insert all the correct PDF’s into those set lists so that it is easier in rehearsal to find the next song. I could just use the search function but once I have all the songs for all the bands I conduct in the iPad there is a pretty long list of songs. It takes too long to search for a song in the middle of a rehearsal with a group of middle students when they all hold noise makers in their hands!
  7. Once set lists are set up I could stop there and my life would be made easier my just having the sheet music in the digital domain BUT I think there is one other thing we can do! Let’s link a song from out iTunes library to the PDF file so that we can easily play a demonstration recording for our students.
  8. That means we actually have to have a recording of that piece in our iTunes Library! So sometimes I have to go make a recording, go download it from somewhere, or go buy it. Sometimes I use a service like Keepvid.com to pull a video from YouTube.
  9. Then once the MP3 is in my iTunes library I can then tap on the link button A)in ForScore (tap on the song title in the top of the screen – at the bottom of the menu that pops up is that link button) B)in UnRealBook you use the music menu at the top of the screen to link a song to the PDF.
  10. HINT – In ForScore you can actually link several MP3′s to a single PDF – so If you are a choir teacher for instance you could have a recording of the soprano part, another recording of the alto part and also a recording of the accompaniment all linked to the PDF of the music. Then if you are not a great piano player you don’t have to try to stumble through the playing of the parts, just play the MP3!

Now, since I teach 4 middle school bands that each play 3-4 pieces for the concerts and 2 high school groups that will play 6-7 pieces each you can start to see why this process takes so long.

BUT

Here is the final action to be taken…. Once this is done for each piece the first time you then make sure to make backups of you digitized PDF music and also backups of your iTunes library! This way the next time you perform and rehearse these pieces this entire process will take just moments! It is well worth the time up front because your rehearsals are easier to plan for and carry out as well!

I am very interested in how everyone is using the new “Tags” in Mavericks. I have started using tags more now and started changing the way I name my files. Now instead of putting the composer and arranger in the file name I simply put that info into tags. How are tags changing your workflow?

Using an iPad to share PDF Music annotations with others (Or for you use later in the future)

I teach Band. That means Marching Season for our area at this time of the year. My iPad is a life saver for me during this time. I keep all my music on the iPad for one thing. I have all of our music and drill books for the season scanned and in PDF form. Directors score for our marching show, all the instrumental parts for the show. drill charts, individual coordinates, and much more.

There are several apps that I use throughout the year for my PDF music that I use during rehearsals and performances. There are benefits to each app and I would like to point out one feature that makes working with others much easier!

Here is the scenario….. I, as director, need to collaborate with the other instructors for the season. I have a percussion instructor, color guard instructor and a parent that helps out with the tuba’s. As I go through my scores I always annotate them so I know what is going on in the drill at any given time. In the past we have then sat down and had a session where I would talk everyone else through those markings and they would then mark their scores as well. The exciting news is that with the advent of the iPad we no longer have to take time for everyone to individually mark their own scores now though! I simply use the export PDF function and they receive my PDF, intact with all my annotations, for use on their iPads!

Here is the way this works….

ForScoreFORSCORE

I work my way through the PDF score marking critical information. With a long press of one finger, the annotation tools pop up. I then mark where each drill chart starts with a blue highlighter, I write the drill chart page number in blue pen, and then directions in red pen. The colors of course are up to you. In ForScore it is easy to add additional colors of pens/highlighters. Realize that if you mark using a blue highlighter and then edit that highlighter later to make it more transparent, the markings already done are not going to change. That means you just need to be happy with the way the pen settings are from the start! Of course you can go back and erase something and re-do it with the new settings. (Check out the blue highlighting in the screen shot below – you will see two different transparency settings)

In ForScore I can move the annotation toolbar up and down the screen if I find that it is in the way while annotating. Since I am using landscape, marching band scores I move it towards the middle of the page.

Annotating in ForScore

Annotating in ForScore

The next step is to get the finished score out of my copy of ForScore and someplace the others can access it. The best options here, i feel, is to look under the toolbox and find the sharing section. There you could email the annotated PDF to everyone BUT I think the best option is to use the Open In feature, save it to DropBox, and then share that link to everyone. This will give everyone DropBox access to a folder that you can then put anything in all season long that you want the others to access, additional scores, medical forms, time schedules and many other items! Make sure you choose to save “With Annotations” when you do this – otherwise this little exercise was all for naught! Here are a couple of screen shots of this….

2013-08-08 16.30.11   2013-08-08 16.30.32

 

unrealBook LogoUNREALBOOK

This whole process works much the same in UnRealBook. There are two critical elements that make the experience very different though. If you are working with normal portrait scores you may never run into these issues!

ISSUE 1 – When I am using my marching band scores they are all in landscape layout. UnRealBook still handles this very differently than ForScore. I actually love the way UnRealBook deals with these scores EXCEPT for when I am ready to export the PDF score, with annotations and share it with others. At that point things just go wrong. When I export the PDF score with annotations, UnRealBook “smooshes” the landscape orientation into portrait and everything gets stretched out and weird! Here is a screenshot of what happens! It is still useable but not nearly as nice looking as before!

2013-08-08 15.59.24

 

ISSUE 2 – The other issue is in the way the annotations are handled in UnRealBook vs ForScore. Again UnRealBook handles it’s page layout very differently so when I am annotating in UnRealBook I can zoom in much farther in UnRealBook! This is awesome because when I zoom back out it looks better in UnRealBook. I can also write more at the top of these Landscape pages in UnRealBook than what I can in ForScore.

What does this mean in relation to this blog post? Well it means that there isn’t a “perfect” solution yet in music apps I don’t feel. Of course I could take the PDF score, open it in several other apps that allow annotation – PDF Cabinet and PDF Expert are two of my favorites – and then import that back into the “music” app. It also means that you need to take a look at MULTIPLE apps and decide what your “best case” is for the scenario you are in.

 

BACKUPS OF PDF MUSIC WITH ANNOTATIONS:
This same process is what you would go through when you have annotations in your PDF music that you know you will want to access in the future. Backup the PDF’s on your iPad with annotations – I would suggest saving the annotated PDF with a slightly different name to indicate that it has annotations in it.

CONCLUSION:
As Always – What’s the moral here? SHARE, SHARE, SHARE – It’s so easy these days to make your life more efficient! Save yourself some work and spend more time with your family!

 

PDF Cabinet LogoPDF CABINET and PDF Expert LogoPDF EXPERT

Since I brought those two apps up I should mention several thoughts about them.

PDF Cabinet is an awesome app that allows you to actually annotate in a collaborate manner with others on the same PDF. It is a “cabinet” to store PDF files in – I throw all that stuff from my principals in here for one thing!

PDF Cabinet info

PDF Cabinet info

PDF Expert is the app that I go to constantly when ever I need to have someone “sign” a document or if I need to fill out a form for something.

PDF Expert Info

PDF Expert Info

 

If you are not using these apps you should think about it!

Good luck during this upcoming Marching Season/Fall Semester or whatever you call the upcoming excitements! I’ve got one more week before I go to Band Camp – I know some people are already in school!

 

Notion on the iPad for Band Directors (or anyone actually!)

notiononiPadIf you are using an iPad and you also need to use a music notation program, I would hope by now that you are aware of Notion for the iPad. Of course Notion is not JUST for the iPad though. That is actually one of the beautiful things about this app!  You can have it on your laptop and your iPad making it all that more flexible! Another great feature is the price – $99 for the full computer version and $15 for the iPad version. Compare that to other notation software and I think you will agree that it is a bargain! I will start out with a word of warning about the size of this app! It is going to require a large amount of space because of one feature that also makes it stand out it the selection of notation apps available. Notion gives you the ability to compose, edit, and playback scores using real audio samples performed by the London Symphony Orchestra recorded at Abbey Road Studios. That does mean large app sizes! This in it self is enough of a reason for music teachers to never even consider a 16GB iPad – in fact a 32GB is questionable as a teacher!

OK, OK you say – let’s get to the good stuff…..

Here is how I was exploring Notion tonight as a Band Director getting ready for Band Camp:

STEP ONE – First of all I am a Sibelius user ever since version 2. I also use Finale (ever since it came out) but Sibelius is my main choice. So as I prepare for Band Camp I take my parts for the marching show that have been scanned into PDF files and I use PhotoScore to read my PDF files, one part at a time, into Sibelius. The ability in PhotoScore to read from a PDF is a huge benefit. i used to have to have one TIFF file for PhotoScore and then a PDF for my iPad. No longer. It takes me about 10 minutes a part to get from PDF to Sibelius and that includes fixing errors in PhotoScores reading of the PDF. Then I combined all the parts into one score. When I get done the Sibelius parts look just like the ones I bought – dynamics and articulations and everything else.

STEP TWO – Thank goodness that the notation world is buying into Music XML because it really is making life easier and makes sharing this Sibelius score I have created easier these days! I simply exported an XML file of the score from Sibelius and emailed it to myself.

STEP THREE – I grab my iPad, open my mail app, tap on the attachment and select “Open in Notion”

STEP FOUR – Notion opens the XML file and wa la – it’s all there! It’s like magic! The score looks pretty much exactly like it did in Sibelius!

So now I have a very flexible score of my marching show on my iPad. I can edit this score – change parts, whatever I would like to do and even print it from Notion. When listening to the playback of the score it sounds so much better than using Scorch (I will post about Scorch later).

Here are a few tips though that it took me a bit of digging around to figure out….

Let’s look at the score as it showed up -

Imported XML Score

Imported XML Score

 

The screen acts as yo would expect – you can scroll through, play it, edit it etc.

The next thing I dug into was the settings (the gear icon) and I discovered Continuous View – I like this view on the iPad. It simply is one long scroll from left to right. You can see from the screenshot below that there is a yellowish bar on the left of the screen to indicate that you are in this view.

Notion 2 Continuous View

Now as a Band Director I almost panicked when I could not figure out how to display individual parts but it is there in the settings under view….

Notion 3 View settings

 

Tap on Dynamic Parts and there is the list I was looking for – allowing me to select any individual part I wish to see by itself.

Notion 4 Parts

Upon selecting the Flute part for instance, this is what you would get….

Notion 5 Flute Part

 

Now there was one setting I actually had to go in and take care of that for some reason did not come through in the XML import of the score. I had to dig in and select the correct playback instrument for SOME of the parts. Some parts were already done for me – like the flute and clarinet. But the trumpets and trombones were not. Here is a screenshot of that process… Go into the settings, and select SCORE SETUP (Not Parts Settings as I did – that is page layout stuff!)

Notion 6 Setting instruments

 

simply tap the blue arrow and you get this ability to SWITCH INSTRUMENT for that Part…

Notion 7 Selecting Instrument

 

The last item I am going to mention is that I found it rather interesting that I had to pay extra for an Alto Sax sound! I know Notion wanted to keep some sounds out of the original download because of file size. Plus not everyone is going to need a mandolin or banjo sound and having to pay extra to get a “section” sound of trumpets makes sense to me as an extra. An Alto Sax, Tenor Sax and Bari Sax sound seems pretty basic to me though! Each sound is .99 cents though so it’s not THAT big of an expense.

I have to pay for an Alto Sax sound?

I have to pay for an Alto Sax sound?

 

I choose to enter all my music into Sibelius first because I am so fast using that app. I think there are many music teachers out there that fall into this category besides me. Being able to import that XML file is huge! It makes it nice that I do not have to enter everything into Notion on the iPad but I can still end up with a music notation file on my iPad that I can use from there.

REALITY – The real question is this – How much am I going to use this? Well I’m not so sure that I will actually end up doing much editing of the music in Notion for iPad. I absolutely feel that having the Notion file is so much better than using a PDF version of the music! Of course I will have to play around this marching season to compare having the Notion file versus simply using Sorch for iPad (which reads the Sibelius file and displays the notation but will not allow editing of that file. Scorch is simply for viewing and playing back the notation file)

CON – Marching Band Directors are not going to be happy with playback of the drumline! Of course I am not happy on my laptop unless I have Virtual Drumline from TapSpace playing! Thank goodness both Sibelius and Finale now use a few of the sounds from Virtual Drumline in their basic soundsets available for everyone.  BUT the ability for us to now at LEAST view that notation on our iPads is HUGE! (In a much cleaner and more flexible version than PDF) Of course the Drumline parts take much longer to actually enter into Sibelius so you really have to weigh the time against the benefit. It takes me about 5 minutes to pull out the printed drumline parts, walk down the hall to the scanner at school and scan those into PDF format. In the time it takes me to get back to the Band Room I can pull my iPad out and have those PDF’s pulled out of my Mail app and into ForScore or UnRealBook or GigBook. I still question the benefit of taking the time to dump drumline parts into Sibelius for use on my iPad in Scorch or Notion. There is no doubt in my mind about the benefit of putting wind parts in because I also end up creating SmartMusic files and testing the students on their marching music through SmartMusic. (Again using XML as the way to get Sibelius files turned into Finale files to convert to SmartMusic)

I would love to hear from other directors who are using their iPads on the Marching Band field and in music rehearsals for Marching Band! LEave comments below!

 

This Changes Things! Band Directors take note! (Updated)

If you use an iPad, teach band and use Essential Elements Methods book ….. Then you need to be aware of the updates Hal Leonard has put together!

Check out this link… http://www.halleonard.com/ee/interactive/

The interactive iBooks they have for every instrument is going to change the way I teach!

This is taking the simple scanning of a book I already own to a different level. First of all each piece has the accompaniment right there next to the music. No searching for it in the iTunes library, no loading SmartMusic and then searching for the right song, it is a simple press of the play button! Secondly, finding a song is quick and easy because there is a table of contents that has already been put together for me. I don’t have to go through and bookmark songs in ForScore or UnReal Book. Even if I did do that, can you imagine the mess I would have if I did that for every instrument in the band?

Of course this will be the first year I have SmartMusic on my iPad as well. How that will work out remains to be seen. It for sure will be amazing to be able to put use the Apple TV, an iPad and SmartMusic during rehearsals.

Take a look at this screenshot…. Then go download the samples from the iBook store.

UPDATE – Additional info….. Each book is 377 MB in size except of course the Percussion book which is 566MB.

As of now I do not see a Directors score in the iBook Store.

SmartMusic on iPad’s! Demo Video

 

SmartMusiciPad2

I thought I was done posting for the day….

and then….

SmartMusic sent an email with a link to an online demo of the SmartMusic iPad app in action! Now I’m really getting excited!

Chromatik in the Band Room

Chromatik logoNo, no, I am not talking about the chromatic scale! I m talking about the online music website for “learning music together”. Well, that’s what THEY say on their web site! Practice, Share, Record and Collect your music online – those are the highlights of what this site is about.

What Chromatik allows us musicians to do is to put our PDF sheet music online and access it from a web browser. Once that PDF Sheet Music is online then you are able to view and practice with that acting as your sheet music instead of actual paper music. But it does get better than this! As you practice you are also able to record yourself! After recording your self you can share your recordings with other people. Another possibility is that you can create playlists of your PDF Sheet Music and share those playlists with others. So that way we can all work on that music in an online environment and give each other feedback on how we are doing. Here is the link to their information page that just so happens to have a video on it – we all like a little TV right?

Of course, since I am tech minded and always searching for new and different ways to teach and learn music, I am starting to use this web site with my band students. So here starts my journey of sharing about this process online! Look forward to more posts about this resource over the rest of this school year!

First thing I would like to share is the best method I have discovered for uploading my files to the Chromatik web site.

BACKGROUND: All of my Band Music I am digitizing slowly. Each piece we play gets scanned and stored in our digital music library. I end up with two PDF files, one for the score and another for the parts. Each file actually contains the words – “Score” or “Parts” in the filename. This makes it very simple to do a spotlight search, find the appropriate file and make use of that file.

WHAT NOT TO DO: The first things I have discovered that is a horrible, horrible situation is for me to take that PDF file with ALL the band parts and upload that file to Chromatik. when I try to access that PDF (even though it is usually only a 3-4 megabyte file) it is painfully slow to deal with online. I am not sure if it is an issue with the file size or because there are so many pages involved. Either way… don’t do it! I’m sure this situation will only improve over time.

WHAT DOES WORK: I upload each part individually as a separate PDF file. This means that I open the Parts PDF in preview, I am working on a mac here but the process and ideas are the same for windows. Then I select the flute pages and drag them out into the finder to create a new PDF with only the flute part in it. I then do the same for the Clarinet part and so on until I have a new PDF for each instrument. This is a bit of a hassle but in reality it only takes about 5-10 minutes max to drag each part out and re-name it so I know which PDF contains which instrument. Then each PDF gets added to my library in Chromatik.

TRICK: This is the part where you need to pay attention folks! Chromatik does not make it obvious as to the best practice in this process. I did discover though, by accident, that I can have ALL the different instruments show up in my Chromatik library under ONE Piece Name vs every PDF showing up and creating a VERY long list! See the screenshot below… you see that I had uploaded Five Good Natured Variations BEFORE I discovered this process. I had a whole bunch of PDF’s showing up (with the instrument as a part of the title) creating a very long list in my library (I was already DREADING having very many pieces in my library because of this issue – Management was going to be a nightmare!)

Example of each individual PDF vs All PDF's listed under one song title

Example of each individual PDF vs All PDF’s listed under one song title

Then I discovered that all I had to do was give each part the exact same Piece Name as I uploaded them to my library and then Chromatik created a folder for me and listed all the different parts under one Piece Name! This process was a bit hit and miss though – sometimes I had to type in the Piece Name twice to get Chromatik to pick up on the fact that this was a piece that was already in my library. Once Chromatik did pick up on that fact the name of the Author automatically popped into that field. Then I had to pick which part I was uploading. Then all the parts show up in my Library as a drop down menu list under the Piece Title as you see in the above screenshot for Variation Overture.

Here is a screenshot of the uploading process – you can see that I typed in the Piece Title and then Chromatik input the Author Name (that’s why it is a darker grey)

Naming uploads

Naming uploads

There will be more to come as I work through figuring out this web site.

I am fully behind the ideas they are working to implement here. I also realize that this is in the early stages of it’s life. That is why I am willing to overlook some of the annoying issues I have run into. Things like it NOT being obvious of how to upload music and there not being a guide that describes the process. Or the fact that I cannot re-order the playlists, the fact that I have NO idea how they figure out the order in which pieces show up in your music library after you download them and the fact that it is a bit slow at times.

The service is free! Plus is you are a school they will donate a FREE iPad2 if you implement this at your school and get 100 students to sign up! Of course one of the reasons I am using this service is because they also have an iPad app, which is also free.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 761 other followers

%d bloggers like this: