What Software & Programs Do You Use?

This looks great… thanks James.

I’ve always used Transcribe by 7th String but i’ll check this one out later today.

I’ve been meaning to write an in-depth post on Transcribe for this Software section of the forum.

Similar to this one on the iRealPro: iRealPro Backing Tracks Setup

I will get around to the Transcribe “starter guide” shortly.

Thanks Hayden! I got irealpro when I started having vocal coaching last year, but haven’t really used it so far except to figure out how my favourites in there tick. I’m probably really limiting its functionality! Thanks for the signposts in the link above that actually use it. I had ideas about hooking up a Midi keyboard to my ipad and using this but it never quite happened…:roll_eyes:

I have a Bose Soundlink which I use for the iRealPro.


The Soundlink is bluetooth powered, so no tripping over cables :grin: and it really packs a punch bass-wise considering the size which makes the audio quality perfect for use with the iRealPro bass/drums backing tracks.

It’s also very portable and has awesome battery life - easily a few hours of play time from fully charged.

I’d highly recommend it.

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Yes, I have one - they are amazing bang for the amount of buck. Cheers!

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Hi Hayden. Im new to your pro program,which I just joined. I listened to the 12 bar jazz lesson. You opened up a background drumd and bass program. Where is that? Is that part of your lesson? How do I access that?

Hi Andrew :wave:

Welcome to PianoGroove!

Yes that software is the iRealPro App.

I have created this in-depth thread on how to download and install it: iRealPro Backing Tracks Setup

It’s a fantastic piece of software and I use it on a near-daily basis.

I have included information on how to download, how to install the Jazz Backing Tracks Pack, and also how to configure the app.

If you have any further questions you can reply directly in the thread and I’ll be happy to assist you.


Hello Hayden: I finally decided that I “grew up” sufficiently to try iRealPro. By that I mean that I have followed many pieces of advice you gave to all of us (the one I benefited from the most is to really get to know the chords of a tune, their relationship to the melody, the key signature, etc.) and got and used the iRealPro with Blue in Green. What a fine experience it was to be able to play the tune and even generate a simplistic interpretation with the help of the iRealPro program. Now I am going to go back to all the standards I have learned well enough to play them with IRealPro. I am truly excited about this.
Best, Ivan


Hi Ivan,

That’s great news!

It is a fantastic piece of software and emulates playing with a jazz band beautifully.

That’s exactly it.

iRealPro is useful for moving away from the lead sheet.

By all means, use the lead sheets as a supplement to learn the tune. Once you have a good understanding you should play along with iReal and ditch the lead sheet.

You might need to occasionally glance over at the screen to see what chord you are on, but with time and practice, you will be able to ‘feel’ where you are in the form.

That sounds like a brilliant idea.

Some will work better than others. Any medium/up tempo tunes are well suited.

If you have any questions along the way, be sure to let me know.

Bose was the first to have this great bass sound in a little box (my daughter got one) but they are quite expensive
i find this one and really it does the same job ( even better more presence, but thats really subjective) i think and much more robust and battery fine too.

(feel free hayden to cancel this post if you thinks ist too much comercial pointed )


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Brilliant… thanks for sharing Pierre.

This is not at all too commercially pointed. This is exactly what the forum is for… to share useful advice and guidance that will ultimately benefit our jazz piano learning journey.

This is a great piece of advice to find a more cost-effective option for portable Bluetooth speakers - particularly as you have used/experiences both the Bose and the VTIN.

I completely agree that the Bose SoundLink is expensive, but I do love it. For the size it is, and the sound it packs, it’s a wonderful portable speaker. I have never found anything it’s size which can match it… until now! :grin:

At €29.99 Euros, the VTIN is a fantastic deal!

It also looks a little more robust in its outer casing.

At that price I will definitely order one to check it out.

I do occasionally have issues with the Bose where it ‘stutters’ due to the Bluetooth signal. The ‘hard reset’ helps where you hold down the centre button for around 10 seconds, and then all the lights flash… this usually corrects the issue.

I see you shared a .fr weblink Pierre… where in France are you from?

I’m digressing from this thread topic (which is actually against our forum guidelines :grinning:) but i’m genuinly intersted… I love France… brilliant country and culture and the birthplace of many of my favourite classical musicians.


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I am living near Bordeaux , among the vineyards. I love food and music like a lot of French people :slight_smile: they are part of our culture sure.
( I still haven’t introduced myself. but i d like more to talk about music than myself)
Yes Debussy Ravel, and Satie interfere so much with jazz ; probably thats why they are my favourites classical composers too … but i love Chopin and Rachmaninov too. but lets say it in a low voice :grin:


Yep that’s one of the reasons I like visiting France :grin:

That’s all good. I’m loving all your input and suggestions in the forum Pierre. I’m onboard with all of your ideas.

The introduce yourself thread is a nice place for students who are completely new to jazz and want a little guidance from myself on where to start.

Yes I find it fascinating to read into their lives and in their own way, they fostered the birth and creation of jazz music.

Anyhow… back to software :grinning:

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A post was split to a new topic: Seattle Jazz Clubs & Jazz Jam Nights

Sorry if it’s not the right section, is there any software that would enable scanning some sheet music to pdf and convert it to MIDI? I know I could just manually input the notes of some difficult section I’m trying to learn to MuseScore for example, and play it back. The other day I tried PlayScore but it’s not really what it advertises to be…

Hi Diana,

I don’t know of any accurate programs for this.

I have seen various services that claim to offer this but from my experience there is always a degree of manual editing involved to get the score accurate.

I personally find it quicker to start a fresh using programs such as Sibelius, or the free alternative MuseScore.

If I come across another solution I will post an update here.

Hello Diana

i find this discussion on musescore

someone talk about cappella scann that work for him https://capellasoftware.com/how-to-use-capella-scan/ no personnal experience , only bad with all the software i have tried before, but never have tried this one.


I’ve just tried the demo version with full functionality. It’s actually pretty good! Not perfect, but does recognize the notes and values.

I use logic pro X which is a DAW (digital audio worksation) which can play which can be used to play midi files and help transcribe tunes as a near infinite number of other things regarding music making (especially electronic music.

In terms of transcribing I was wondering if there was any benefit of getting the transcribe software, is there anything it does I cant do on logic? I can loop sections, slow down the audio and visually analyse the frequencies.

Hi Kester,

I’d recommend checking out the Amazing Slow Downer App which I use for all my transcription, you can find more information on it here:

It sounds like it has some similar functionality to Logic Pro (slow down controls, loop specific sections) and one of my favourite aspects of the Amazing Slow Downer software is how easily it integrates with my Spotify playlists which are pulled directly into the mobile app.

It’s also nice how portable it is being an iPhone/Android app; I just hook my iPhone up to a bluetooth speaker and I’m ready to go!

Whilst it can be helpful to visually analyse the frequencies of a song, if we can train ourselves to transcribe music purely by ear we get more benefit from the exercise as well as developing our listening skills.

Ultimately we all learn in different ways so there is no right or wrong way to go about this, but I hope you find the comments above helpful. :+1: