Yousician aims at making “musicality as common as literacy” with an affordable app designed for all skills levels, that can be used anywhere.
Imagine a world where everyone has the resources and education to play music. She Shreds has teamed up with Yousician, an interactive educational music app, with the hopes to continue creating a world where musical knowledge is widely available—and fun.
What is Yousician
With the mission statement, “Making musicality as common as literacy,” Yousician shares music education with players of any skill level who have access to a smartphone, tablet, or computer. The app offers lessons on how to read music, build skills, and play popular songs. With no cables needed (and a built-in tuner), you can learn guitar, bass, ukulele, piano, and voice wherever you have access to a device, making it easier than ever to learn in a comfortable environment at an affordable price, on your own schedule.
In other words, Yousician is as addictive and entertaining as playing Guitar Hero, but with the added ability to adjust it based on your skill level, actually learn how to play an instrument, and take it with you wherever you go.
How It Works
The Yousician service is built on audio signal processing technology that recognizes notes and chords through a device’s microphone. When you first begin, you are asked a few questions to assess your skill level and match you with an appropriate curriculum. The setup is similar to Guitar Hero: a ball bouncing on tabs, “cowboy” chords, or sheet music. You pick or strum along to the backing tracks of popular songs or new ones created by the Yousician team, and the program gives you real-time feedback on accuracy and timing while you play through thousands of lessons, workouts, and challenges. There are also video tutorials and a ‘practice mode’ to help you along the way. You also have the ability to control the tempo of the songs—slow it down while you learn, and speed it up as you progress.
Choose from two learning routes:
- Manually – Choose your own learning adventure by picking from thousands of lessons, songs, and workshops while working at your own speed.
- Guided Lesson – Almost like actually going to guitar lessons every week or day. You can still adjust it to your skill level, but the app guides you through levels that are unlocked by achieving lessons.
What It Costs
With the Yousician freemium model, one lesson per day is offered for free, but there is a limit on what songs you can play and how much you can do. With a paid subscription, unlimited lessons are available. However, the cost of the subscription depends on whether you’re looking to pay for one instrument or if you want the option to learn all of the offered instruments. If you’re interested in learning just a single instrument, there are monthly, quarterly, and annual subscription plans. If you’d like the option to learn all instruments, and learn popular songs by your favorite artists, the all-access price is $179.99 annually.
When compared to private music lessons, the program is an extremely affordable option. And right now, exclusively for She Shreds readers, Yousician is offering an extended free trial of their premium plus package for 14 days, which gives you access to unlimited lessons and songs on as many instruments as you want.
When I was 13, I taught myself how to play guitar by using only the internet and a System of a Down tab book—working with Yousician is definitely an upgrade for those looking to learn an instrument on their own terms. I enjoyed following the tab along, and controlling the tempo to slowly build up and practice finger placement. My favorite thing to practice was the arpeggios and sweeps in the workout mode. The interactive tab is color-coded so you know which finger to use, which is helpful when trying to figure out where to put your fingers with only numbered frets. The notes are shown next to the numbers, so you can learn what fret is what note. They also have a colorblind mode, which speaks to their statement of accessibility.
All in all, Yousician is a great resource for beginners to step into an instrument. Learning through an app is a good option for people with mobility issues, or those living in places that may be remote, unsupportive, and under-resourced. If you enjoy video games, learning at your own pace without the stress of getting to your lesson on time, or challenging yourself to practice, then this is a great app to try out. With an offering of a free two-week trial version for She Shreds readers, I definitely suggest giving it a shot to see if it’s right for you!