The iReal Pro is an amazing band-in-a-box app. Although it was initially created for jazz musicians, there are so many wonderful applications of it; it is perfect for singers and instrumentalists of any level and genre. In this tutorial, I will show you how to practice with the iReal Pro.
I recently created another tutorial called How to Get Started with the iReal Pro, where I explain how to set up the iReal Pro and use its many features. You can read that post here. I have heard from a bunch of people who had already purchased the app and had no idea how to actually use it.
I have been using the iReal Pro with students from age 5 to professional singers and pianists and they all benefit so much from using it as a tool. PLUS it is super fun to use. You can really get creative with it!
How to Practice with the iReal Pro
– full rhythm section, which includes bass drums and either piano or guitar.
This lends itself well to singers or other non-chordal instruments who want to practice with a full band. You can sing or play the melody or an improvisation. I like to use this version to practice sight reading from the fake book.
Bass and drums
– remove the piano or guitar from the mix (I show you how in the video!)
This is ideal for pianists and guitarists who need to practice playing chords. Since you have removed the chordal instrument from the mix, you can easily practice your chords and voicings. This is also a great practice tool for singers or instrumentalists who want the challenging of playing without a chordal instrument
– remove the piano/guitar and bass from the mix
This is my favorite way to practice with the iReal Pro. When you remove the chordal instruments and bass from the mix, you are left with your very own drummer. I use this as a metronome alternative with all of my piano students. It is so fun to play scales, finger exercises and even classical music with a rock or disco track!
– remove the piano/guitar and the drums from the mix
For any singers or instrumentalists who are looking to build their ear training, this is a great way to work on your pitch and even rhythm. Practice singing the melody, phrasing it in different ways and work on improvising or even scat singing. It is challenging to get used to matching pitch along with just the bass!
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