In light of a few recent posts by David Westphal and others I thought it would be worth getting a list of phone apps that benefit people learning trad music. I will kick the ball off with what is I consider an indispensable app

Developed by fellow Dubliner Bryan Duggan who I have the pleasure of playing with from time to time Tunepal is the result of years of work. Ever sat in a trad session and wondered what was the name of that great tune someone just played? Well now you can search a database of over 17,000 tunes from your iPhone/iPod BY PLAYING! 

Just hold your device up to a melody instrument such as the tin-whistle, flute, concertina, uilleann pipes, accordion or banjo, hit record and the melody will be extracted and submitted to the search engine for matching. 

Matching tunes are downloaded to your device, where you can view and edit the notation or the stave, email the tune, post it to facebook or play it back. Check it out  Tunepal

Also great if you have forget the first few notes of a tune you want to play. Simply type in the name of the tune and it will find it and play it back to you on your phone.

So, what other apps are people using. Post below

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My friend, Mike, in Atlanta (who I believe knows Bryan Duggan) has adapted TunePal for Windows 7 phones, if anybody's curious.

Thanks for the tip!

Only app i have this far (music related) is Cleartune, an IMO excellent tuner i use at sessions/home. Comes in very handy since i have a couple of 'combo' whistles (one head, two tubes, like D/Eb and B/Bb)

Two good iPhone / iPad apps for slowing down tunes (and keeping pitch the same) to help learning:

  • TheAmazingSlowDowner
  • Anytune

I prefer Anytune as it allows you to import tunes from iTunes, PC via wireless, email, or Dropbox.

  • Audio Memo's

You can record tunes with Audio Memo's (e.g. if you are in a session), then send them directly to Anytune or Dropbox, from there you can slow them down.  A useful combination if you are at weekend workshop, and dont have access to your computer.


AmazingSlowDowner has really helped me learn new tunes much quicker, there are also some good ear training apps which I am working my way through. I love all this new tech!!

This is another great App  Tune In Radio that I have on my phone. I actually started using it to listen to Americana stations in the US, another music passion of mine, but I am sure it will work in reverse with people stateside able to listen to even local Irish stations that do an hour of trad music here and there.

I simply plug my phone into my stereo and let it play through there. There are lots of ways of doing this though streaming or having a digital radio as part of your stereo system, but this is free. Worth checking out if you only wanted to dip into a couple of hours a weeks, and not be tied to your PC.

Forgot about clear tune, also mandochords, keysignature quiz, play by ear & relative pitch (not sure if these are as useful for more experienced musicians) Also TabToolkit very useful for keeping all your music & lyrics in one place- much better on tablet than phone though!
Ah gadgets & tech - love them!

Here is another one. Not music as suchbut it is usefull. Its called Evernote and you download it as an App to your phone and also download it to any computer you use. You could simply use it to write down tune names etc at sessions or to capture an image such as the first few bars of a tune you forget or sheet music generally. Worth having on your phone for a whole range of reasons. It then automatically syncs the information to all other associated PC's

I have tune pal and will check this out 

Tunebook is another nice one with a 1000+ tunes in ABC and standard notation, if you are looking for the second part f a tune and you don't know it just use the search function and you can either play the tune or read it.

Getting back to Tune In Radio app. You can buy in to a record facility on this app which is very useful, as you can record any tune during the broadcast and learn it later.

I just downloaded tunepal...awesome....

one of my favorite apps is a must have for musicians that play fretted instruments, especially if you're self taught..

FRETBOT displays a diagram of a fretboard up to the 14th fret, and allows you change the fretboard to display 6, 5, or 4 strings/courses.  For the 6-string you can adjust for multiple guitar tunings (including DADGAD)..and the four- string diagram allows for mandolin/tenor banjo (GDAE),  and Irish Bouzouki (GDAD). These are the most common for ITM, but you can also dial in bass guitar, banjo (5string), ukelele, etc.

once you dial in the right instrument, you can then dial in the root note and any scale or chord with that's a spectacular reference tool.




Micheal Eskin has many apps for trad musicians;


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