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Mac software for creating and practicing over chord progressions?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by phillipkregg, Jan 11, 2018.

  1. phillipkregg

    phillipkregg Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2010
    Nashville, TN
    Hey ya'll, I've got a macbook pro and I'm looking for software that will allow me to practice over various chord progressions.

    Here's what I'm looking for:

    • The ability to select a chord (like Bb2 or G7b5) and drag it onto a "sheet" or some way to organize the chords
    • The ability to choose an instrument sound and quality for the chord that doesn't sound cheesy (maybe an organ or pad, or an acoustic guitar or standard piano).
    • Having rhythm or drum loops would be nice along with the ability to set the tempo
    • Also the ability to change the time signature is a nice-to-have but not necessary
    • Needs to be simple and user friendly

    I've seen IPad apps that do some of this stuff, but not everything. And I currently have Ableton Live, which is great for dragging and dropping loops, but there is no capacity to drag and drop chords themselves (at least I haven't found a way if there is). Ableton does offer a "chord" plugin, but it's really geared toward electronic musicians who just want to make something sound cool, it doesn't let you specify the type of chord or modify it without spending a lot of time tweaking various knobs and dials.

    Any recommendations?
  2. tinyd


    Mar 11, 2003
    iReal Pro is designed more as a library of chord charts but it has a good editor so you can specify exactly which chords you want - the editor takes a bit of learning but once you know how to use it you'll never look back. It has playback as well - it leans towards jazz but it has other styles. It might not be exactly what you're looking for in terms of ease-of-use but it's an excellent piece of software all the same. One final advantage is that you can easily export your creations as standard chord charts to share with other musicians.

    Just found this video that shows the editor in action: Input a complete song in under 3 minutes | iReal Pro
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2018
  3. Bob_Ross

    Bob_Ross Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 29, 2012
    Does Band-In-A-Box still exist?
  4. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Yes, absolutely. The ultimate practice tool, IMO
  5. Rhythmman535

    Rhythmman535 Supporting Member

    May 9, 2007
    Rochester, NY
    Chordbot App is fairly simple and straightforward but not as full featured as iReal Pro.

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