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Online music lessons taught by the artists

Sound & Music

There’s nothing like a great song to inspire music fans to want to learn to play it themselves, but doing it right is rarely easy. Enter Now Play It, a UK-based site that offers video instruction taught by the artists themselves. Launched last year, Now Play It aims to get people as close to the artists and songs they love as possible. To do that, it offers downloadable video tutorials on the art and craft of playing hundreds of different songs on guitar, bass, piano or drums, many of them led by the artists who wrote or perform them. Paul McCartney, Blur and KT Tunstall are among the artists currently offering instruction on the site, and users can search for tutorials by artist, song, instrument, difficulty level or tutor. Now Play It’s full tutorials, priced at GBP 3.99, are typically split into three parts—lesson, recap and play-through—and are at least 15 minutes long. In-house tutorials follow the same format but with instruction by a Now Play It tutor instead. ‘Lite’ tutorials, meanwhile, are just two parts—play-through and recap—and are generally between three and six minutes long; pricing is GBP 1.99. Downloads are available in MP4 or Windows Media Video formats. With Generation C‘s penchant for content production, Now Play It is sure to find an enthusiastic audience among the many consumers out there seeking to create, to express themselves and to make the music they love their own. Being taught by a well-known artist, meanwhile—even if by video—is sure to give them a heaping helping of status skills and stories to share about the experience. Now Play It currently offers a forum for community discussion, but a logical next step, it seems to us, would be to give consumers a place to show off the results of their instruction with video and recordings of them playing the music they learned—along with opportunities to critique and discuss. If there’s anything better than content, it’s content plus community! (Related: Music school for generation YouTube.) Spotted by: Lloyd Salmons



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