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#1785457 - 11/08/11 07:24 PM Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good?  
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
jforrest1980 Offline
Junior Member
jforrest1980  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
Columbus, Ohio USA
Hello, this is my first post here. I am very much a beginner piano player. I have had a Yamaha P-70 digital 88 key piano for a few years now and really want to learn how to play. I have so many books and computer softwares and I just can't get into them. Even though they are all "Adult" books they are always just full of folky songs and I get frustrated. I need someting that I can hook to my PC using a MIDI input and actually see the keys I hit on screen, and not only learn to play classis, and modern songs from all genres, but actually learn music theory, and eventually make my own pieces. This David Sides software looks promising. $150.00 doesn't seem like too much of an investment and it looks like you can buy new songs they release on the website. I am really thinking of giving it a try.

Has anyone else tried this? Also, are there any other similar interactive softwares that may be better? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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#1785587 - 11/08/11 11:06 PM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,414
packa Offline
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packa  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,414
Dallas, TX
I'm not familiar with the software you mention, but you should probably also take a look at Home Concert Xtreme to see if it might help (it's a bit cheaper too and should work fine with your keyboard's MIDI, but I'm not sure it has the theory perspective you mention). Here's a youtube review of the software: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n27pR-Bz3eQ.



Paul Buchanan
Estonia L168 #1718
#1786087 - 11/09/11 09:09 PM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
jforrest1980 Offline
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jforrest1980  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
Columbus, Ohio USA
Thanks, I'll check that out. I was researching and the software I mentioned just came out Nov 2nd, so it's probably not well known yet.

#1787038 - 11/11/11 12:55 PM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
davidsides Offline
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davidsides  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
* Deleted *

Last edited by BB Player; 11/11/11 05:08 PM. Reason: Advertisement deleted
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#1787240 - 11/11/11 07:22 PM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 758
Stephen Hazel Offline
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Stephen Hazel  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 758
Seattle-ish, WA
Got a link for this software?
Cuz google knows nothing about it.

Ooooh, deleted due to advertisement, eh?
Dang, can ya email me a link then?
stephen.hazel@gmail.com

I've researched this topic in GORY detail
as I'm building something very similar.
(see the ole signature below).

Only other apps that are anywhere near mature are:
http://www.synthesiagame.com and
Home Concert Xtreme (link earlier in thread)

Synthesia's sheet music notation has a ways to go.
As does mine !!
But I'm actively workin on just that right now.
it'll be showing multiple row sheet music better
than HomeConcert's in abouuuuut 5 months.

I've noticed that HCX's notation doesn't show
notes with different durations that start at the
same time well.

Synthesia is cheap. Mine is free. HCX is the best. (For NOW!)
Also probably important is that I think only mine
can save your performance as a midi file...

Of course, these apps are only for your daily
practice routine.
They do NOT replace a piano teacher by any means.

Also, if this "David Sides" software won't load
a standard midi file, well, it's worthless.


http://PianoCheetah.com - my weird piano practice program
#1787664 - 11/12/11 04:34 PM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
davidsides Offline
Junior Member
davidsides  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
Playground Sessions actually allows for its users to track, in real-time, which notes are being played and if they are accurate or inaccurate. The user would plug his keyboard into his computer via USB or MIDI cables, and Playground then gathers the performance data to score the user and let the user know what his strengths are as well as what he could use more work on.

Playground Sessions also teaches music theory in its section called "Bootcamp."

#1787669 - 11/12/11 04:46 PM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,010
Starr Keys Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Starr Keys  Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 1,010
california
Here's a video on Playground Sessions. The website address is shown at the end of the video.


http://themusicofdavidsides.com/first-look-playground-sessions

Last edited by Starr Keys; 11/12/11 04:49 PM.
#1787688 - 11/12/11 05:31 PM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 758
Stephen Hazel Offline
500 Post Club Member
Stephen Hazel  Offline
500 Post Club Member

Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 758
Seattle-ish, WA
I take back that "worthless" comment - my apologies.
I should have said not useful for a pianist who's intermediate or better.

I'm glad such software is starting to be made.
Lord knows we need more piano players in this world.

Spending the money on a teacher would be better, of course.
But, eh, whatever gets a kid into piano is GOOD.

Some hopefully helpful criticism for you:
- you may have a tough time selling it for $150...
my opinion is that it's not as good as HCX for $100
Keep in mind I know nothing about marketing, just coding smile

- your users on windows will be calling you when they're
forced to deal with the stock windows softsynth or VSTs...
Also, get ready for a whole lotta "which keyboard should i buy??"
questions regardless of how many docs your website has.

- main criticism is you can't load just any midi file, of course.

Well, good luck with your project.
I've found writing code for this sort of app REAL fun.
And quite challenging!


http://PianoCheetah.com - my weird piano practice program
#1793777 - 11/22/11 02:55 AM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
nickpotz Offline
Junior Member
nickpotz  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 2
Sythesia notation is not that good atm. MidiIllustrator is the best. The two hand piano conversion and the step by step feature pwns.. :]

#2307314 - 07/26/14 10:13 AM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 9
karmanathan Offline
Junior Member
karmanathan  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 9
New York Metro
I tried it and while it's very nice software I don't think it's right for someone just starting off and having never played a piano. The videos just move too fast and right into some advanced topics. I think once you have the basics down it is nice to learn the more popular songs and challenge yourself with scores and badges and compete against others.

#2307334 - 07/26/14 11:33 AM Re: Playground Sessions software by Davis Sides... Any good? [Re: jforrest1980]  
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 18
Weakky Offline
Junior Member
Weakky  Offline
Junior Member

Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 18
I've been playing piano for 2 years now, without having a single hour of explanation by a teacher. I was in the exact same situation as you. I did not want to have a teacher, and have to learn classical musics that I just hate. There's no need to if you have enough motivation and time to spend. Just go on youtube, type the song you want and add "synthesia". If the song is popular enough, you'll have lots of tutorial by people who basically recorded their screens with synthesia playing, and you'll have all the notes scrolling down. There's even sometimes several tutorial on a same music, with differents tempo like 20%, 50%, and 100% in order to get the notes easier. Here's an example with "Pirate of Caribbean - He's a pirate": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqsFRzdNpGM - If you don't find videos with lower tempo, you can just try to find the MIDI file itself, load it into synthesia, and lower the speed yourself.
I usually also get another tutorial by someone who directly explain you how to play it on his piano, in order to get the right position of your finger for every chords. Just like this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kATNjJcYryE
It consumes A LOT of time, but you can basically play almost any song this way. Again, it is all about time, motivation, and perseverance.


Last edited by Weakky; 07/26/14 11:36 AM.

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