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iPad for Music Charts


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One facet of my organization that could definitely be improved upon is the way that organize and store my collection of chord charts/lyric sheets/arrangement notes that I create. (I've gotten into the habit of creating a 5x8 card for pretty much every song that I learn - even if it's simply so that I can refresh my memory regarding song basics if it should happen that I don't play it for awhile.) My music room is littered with little binders of cards ...

 

I starting to give some thought to picking up an iPad as a tool to better organize my collection. I know others are doing this .... what software packages are folks using to this end?

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i got one for my wife and our new group.......she has really taken to it more than I thought she would. There is free apps for just about everything. I think the main one she uses is setlist maker?? Stores setlist...words, chords and she can put any notes she wants to add for each song. No more paper (except as a backup). I really thiink she might be lost without it.

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I think I'm going to go with On Song. After having looked at what I could find via websearch - I narrowed it down to three choices - On Song, forScore and Songbook. Being that all of 'em were less than $6 to purchase from the App store - I bought all three just to kick the tires. Songbook provides alot of "guitarplayer" tools (chord builders, finger position icons, etc.) that do nothing for me as a keyboard player - so that one got eliminated from my shortlist. In the end it was On Score's tiered structure for organizing songs that swung me.

 

The organization construct is pretty straight forward. You create a library of songs - organized into "books" (In my case, I created a book for each band I play with). Under the book you can create folders (i.e., for a given night's setlist) - and then within the folder - you can created individual sets (i.e., 1st set, 2nd set, 3rd set, etc.) Once you've created the set - you simply call up the list of songs associated with the band - and pick the songs you want on included in that list in the order you plan to play them. You can scroll through the songs in the set simply by touching the "side" of the current song chart being displayed. Touch the right side of the current chart - and the page turns to the next chart on the list. Touch the left side of the current chart and you move to the previous chart. Touching the "Song" button displays the whole set list - which allows you to go directly to any song on the list.

 

I was able to import all of my charts (which I saved out their current "home" in Microsoft OneNote - into individual *.TXT files) which I pushed up to DropBox - and then downloaded to the iPad. It was quick and easy - considering that I've got roughly 180 songs loaded into an iPad that I picked up from the nearby Apple Store at 7:00 pm last night. There are lots of other features (i.e., the ability to link each chart to a music file (mp3, mp4, etc.) so you can play an audio recording without leaving the chart, and some relatively robust features such as the ability to change the key of your charts (provided you took "tagged" the chords properly when creating the TXT file etc) - that I'll likely retrofit into my charts so that I can take advantage of them moving forward. All in all though, a very cool.

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