Site and Apps for interactive utilization of online sheet music - Pros & Cons
Musicnotes.com is an online platform which provides music sheets in printed and electronic form, with great functions for the score to be played and watched on screen. We recently tested how it works and what could be the advantages that you can get from using it. In our test, we used a Windows PC and an iPad.
Musicnotes provide apps for every kind of device, Mac, Ipad, Windows and Android which are downloadable for free, and where you can handle your purchases using many available functions, which we list below
So we first made our account, then we made our purchase, paying 5.50$ for one song (maybe the prices are not the same for all songs). Then as soon as the order was paid, we were able to download a PDF in the original key, and that is the only occasion you have to get a PDF unless you buy additional prints. Every other utilization is to be printed on paper or to be watched on the Apps. We understand it's a matter of copyright, so we also won't publish any screenshot. But in the beginning we thought it was a malfunctioning, so we wrote to the contact address, and got no answer. This is a weak point, but let's go with the good ones.
We started trying the Apps on Windows and on the iPad. The functions are very similar, with only slight differences.
The score appears on the screen with the pentagram for sing line, complete with the text, the two pentagrams for piano and the graphic representation of guitar chords. You can change the tempo (very useful), and you can choose whether to hear all the tracks (guitar, voice notes, and piano) or part of them. The function works perfectly, and you can choose to have the notes and the text highlighted as they are played on the page.
Only on the iPad you also have the chance to select an A-B loop, which is also very useful, but this works so-so: the first point of selection is impossible to move from the first line, so this seems to be an improvable limitation, while the second point of the selection is movable as you wish, although this only works within the same page of the score.
You can choose to transpose the key of the song (in our case we found seven different keys available), and the whole work will be instantly moved on the desired tonality. That's another great feature, both for singers and instrumentalists, as all musicians know well, and as said, the choices are many.
The original price was 4,66$, then, possibly for VAT applying according to the buyer's country, it came to 5,50$. It's not so low, but depending on what is the final purpose, it could be definitely worthwhile, considering that the score will remain in your account permanently, allowing to get back to it even after a long period. The mentioned prices recurse in many different songs, but we're not sure that it could be the same, or less, or more, for the whole catalogue.
It's huge: you can find 681 composition typing "Mozart" in the search field, 988 for "Bach" and 745 for "Beethoven". And it's not only classical: a lot of modern songs and musicians are in the catalogue, and we found 798 results for Elton John (possibly including covered versions of his masterpieces)
In the scenario of the ultimate resources for music eLearning, specifically in the field of music scores; the sheets are no longer just .. piece of papers, but thanks to the application of technology, together with a huge work of research and editing, today it represents a big step forward for amateurs and professionals, by adding features and functions which make playable what some years ago, for many people, was not.
Of course, we look forward to your comments, together with the comments or corrections from the owners of the platform that we tested for you today.