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Erskine Jazz Essentials app #3001078 07/30/19 05:49 PM
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chigson Offline OP
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Recently attended a jazz workshop, and the teacher there was using Erskine Jazz Essentials app for play along and as a fakebook.
If anyone is familiar with it, any thoughts on it vs iReal?

Also, there are at least 3 "tomes" of it available in appstore, although I couldn't find any info about the tracks included on the internet. Can anyone help?

Many thanks


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Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: chigson] #3002139 08/07/19 12:10 PM
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It looks promising (I love Erskines playing, his versatility and style of teaching), but apps like these tend to be limited -- e.g. you cannot use them for anything but the limited preloaded songs.

Could you get in touch with the jazz workshop instructor and ask? I'd also like to get more info.


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Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: chigson] #3002170 08/07/19 04:18 PM
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Malpaugh Offline
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The Erskine apps have a great choice of jazz standards. You can't change the tempo or the key. However, it's real usable. There is a mixer so you can control the levels of bass, drums, piano and metronome. The tunes FEEL great unlike the kind of mechanical feel of the iReal app. It's also a great feature to solo Alan Pasqua's comping. The man is an absolute master.,

Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: chigson] #3002173 08/07/19 04:47 PM
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Malpaugh said most of what I would hope to say. I have the jazz essentials volume 1 and 2 as well as the afro cuban essentials. I find the afro cuban essentials to be at least intermediate level. It makes distinctions that the average (continental usa) rhythm section might not think of. It would be a handy accompaniment tool for an upper level music theory course. I am still learning new things from it.

The jazz essentials are (as Malpaugh said) unable to change tempo or key, but are wonderfully helpful for developing an authentic feel. My son (tenor sax) and I play along with these, knowing that they are going to stretch the feel and the dynamics way more than I Realbook or the hal leonard recordings. I don't think it's an either/or situation where you have to choose. Each approach can have it's place in your pedagogy. For example, the ii-v-1 exercises in I Realbook are going to force you practice in all keys, and make intellectual connections, but may not help you develop a musical voice as much as the Erskine apps will. If you woodshed the Erskine apps you will find that you know about twenty essential, iconic jazz standards really well and in a deeply musical manner. (and as Malpaugh alluded, you can learn directly from Alan Pasqua's beautiful comping approaches). Without realizing it, you will find yourself playing better. It's like being given a view from the mountain-top. However it will be up to you to extend from that experience and carrying some of that musicality into your regular practice and into other songs. Since these tunes are so fundamental to jazz ... personally I think it's worth it.

Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: chigson] #3002178 08/07/19 05:58 PM
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Cool, will probably pick up a few of these. However, I checked out the ios app for AfroCuban playing and with only 3 reviews it got a 2.3 rating, the most recent was from 2018, so I'm not sure if there's been a significant update that fixes things. If so, you might want to leave a positive rating on the ios app site!


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Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: Randelph] #3002868 08/12/19 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Randelph
Cool, will probably pick up a few of these. However, I checked out the ios app for AfroCuban playing and with only 3 reviews it got a 2.3 rating, the most recent was from 2018, so I'm not sure if there's been a significant update that fixes things. If so, you might want to leave a positive rating on the ios app site!


This, and some other similar examples, shows that the market for musicians apps is probably smaller than you'd think. I have a friend developing some excellent Android apps (mostly for drummers), and I can tell you it is no goldmine. Apples ecosystem is obviously bigger (at least for music), though.


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Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: Ulf] #3002870 08/12/19 09:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Ulf
It looks promising (I love Erskines playing, his versatility and style of teaching), but apps like these tend to be limited -- e.g. you cannot use them for anything but the limited preloaded songs.




You may be interested in SessionBand jazz which is an app a bit like bandit thebox where you can put your own changes in. The drum parts are much better than ireal (which is unusable except for transposing changes on the gig imo)

Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: chigson] #3002914 08/12/19 03:23 PM
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ElmerJFudd Offline
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Is iReal Pro not the default progression/rhythm styles app any longer?


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Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: chigson] #3002960 08/12/19 08:32 PM
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Erskine jazz essentials are great, thanks for the tip!

Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: Tusker] #3003083 08/13/19 05:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Tusker
Malpaugh said most of what I would hope to say. I have the jazz essentials volume 1 and 2 as well as the afro cuban essentials. I find the afro cuban essentials to be at least intermediate level. It makes distinctions that the average (continental usa) rhythm section might not think of. It would be a handy accompaniment tool for an upper level music theory course. I am still learning new things from it.

The jazz essentials are (as Malpaugh said) unable to change tempo or key, but are wonderfully helpful for developing an authentic feel. My son (tenor sax) and I play along with these, knowing that they are going to stretch the feel and the dynamics way more than I Realbook or the hal leonard recordings. I don't think it's an either/or situation where you have to choose. Each approach can have it's place in your pedagogy. For example, the ii-v-1 exercises in I Realbook are going to force you practice in all keys, and make intellectual connections, but may not help you develop a musical voice as much as the Erskine apps will. If you woodshed the Erskine apps you will find that you know about twenty essential, iconic jazz standards really well and in a deeply musical manner. (and as Malpaugh alluded, you can learn directly from Alan Pasqua's beautiful comping approaches). Without realizing it, you will find yourself playing better. It's like being given a view from the mountain-top. However it will be up to you to extend from that experience and carrying some of that musicality into your regular practice and into other songs. Since these tunes are so fundamental to jazz ... personally I think it's worth it.


Thanks, you answered some questions I've had about the Erskine apps vs. iReal Pro.

I've been using iReal Pro because it took a reasonably short amount of time to learn how to create my own charts, based on my bandmate's songs. She has a habit of changing the key of the song regularly, so iReal Pro's ease of tranposition has been a lifesaver for me, as it lets me easily practice each tune in at least 4 different keys.

The sound/performance quality of the generated rhythm section in relation to a good Aebersold CD track has been a distraction at times, so what you report about the Erskine apps is a good selling point, for the times I want to practice to jazz standards instead of our band's stuff.

I recently noticed Mapping Tonal Harmony Pro added a playalong feature, but the app over all has not been easy to learn how to use. A selling point of iReal Pro is the ease of loading hundreds of charts in one shot and this app doesn't even have that.


Re: Erskine Jazz Essentials app [Re: Ulf] #3003154 08/14/19 09:04 AM
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chigson Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Ulf
It looks promising (I love Erskines playing, his versatility and style of teaching), but apps like these tend to be limited -- e.g. you cannot use them for anything but the limited preloaded songs.

Could you get in touch with the jazz workshop instructor and ask? I'd also like to get more info.


Yep, I did the next day I created this post - although he said he got his app in a different way - not sure how it worked out. Might be someone gifted it to him or something.
Well, he mostly said the same things that are already in this thread, so..


if you can't tell the difference, does it matter?

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