The uke is an incredibly fun instrument to play, and this app for ukulele players is making our instrument more accessible and easier to learn for everyone.
The uke is not just for traditional ukulele numbers like Blue Moon or Alaska’s Flag. You can play the uke in ukulele bands, in jazz bands or even with an orchestra in a ukulele concerto, or in arrangements of Vivaldi’s lute concertos. The four traditional sizes: soprano, concert, tenor and baritone, and now the new sopranissimo give the instrument an incredible range. The possibilities are endless.
Developing your skipp
But how do you start, and how do you become a really good player. You might have a book of ukulele songs, and maybe you can figure out the chords from the diagrams, but how do you work out the tune if you don’t read music? Well now there is an app, PlayScore 2 that can do just that, just by taking a photo. That’s right, straight from a photo! All you have to do is snap the page of music and hay presto the app actually plays the notes, just like that.
And that is only scratching the surface of what PlayScore can do. Say you play with others in a ukulele band, or maybe in a mixed band with other instruments like guitar, saxophone or piano? Wouldn’t it be great if you could practice your part to perfection beforehand so that you can feel confident that you can keep with the others when you come together as a group.
Well with PlayScore 2 that’s easy. PlayScore 2 can play the whole band just from a photo of the score, or from an online PDF of the music. But what’s really special, and so useful: PlayScore 2 can play just the parts you tell it to. That means it can play the whole band but missing out your uke part. This is just like playing in the band, but with the advantage that you can take all the time you need to learn to play together, so that when you get into band rehearsal you are not only note-perfect but also, you know how your uke part fits, where the rests are, when to come in and so on. PlayScore 2 even follows the dynamics – loud and soft, whatever it says in the music.
Because you can choose which instruments PlayScore 2 plays on each line the app is amazingly realistic. All you have to do is set up whatever instruments you have in your band and PlayScore 2 does the rest.
Playing songs not specifically written for ukulele
PlayScore 2 can play any song or any piece of music, not just uke numbers. This opens out a whole world of new music for ukulele players. Sites like
Jan Wolters – Sheet Music
The Online Metronome
let you download free sheet music for just about any kind of song. This instantly puts thousands of free music sheets at your fingertips. Choose a song on your iPhone or iPad and then tap Copy to PlayScore 2. The music is ready to play instantly. Any tempo you choose, any combination of instruments; you can even change the key!!
Finally, PlayScore 2 doesn’t just play the music, it can also export it in popular formats: MIDI is a format you can play on any kind of device and can be really useful if you want to get to know a song, say in the car.
MusicXML is the lingua franca of notated music, whether it be ukulele music, piano, guitar of anything. By exporting as MusicXML PlayScore 2 lets you drop the whole score into any score editor (MusScore, Finale, Sibelius, Dorico etc). This means that you can change the music and make arrangements, print it out in another key and so on.
If you want to be a better uke player and get more out of your ukulele then check out PlayScore 2. Start by downloading the app free from the App Store.
Watch the Uke Practice Video – Playing with PlayScore 2 by “Play It Daily” Ukulele