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Learn to Play the Easy Way
Harmonica. Ukulele. Spoons. Tap for classes to master them all.
Just because you’ve got zero free time and about as much musical talent doesn’t mean you can’t express yourself through song. These app-based lessons bring you up to speed on three relatively easy instruments. (No disrespect to the ukulele, harmonica, and spoons virtuosi out there.) You’d be surprised how far you can get in just a few weeks.
Pick up the harmonica
The class: 30 Day Challenge—Learn to Play the Harmonica in One Month
Course description: Each lesson in this monthlong Udemy series clocks in at under three minutes. The class starts with newbie-centric advice like “Which Harmonica Should I Buy” (Day 2), then moves on to the subtle nuances of the instrument: “Six Pointers on Amazing Tone” (Day 6), how to pull off the wah-wah-waaaaaaaahs of train sounds (Days 11 and 12), and jamming along with the 12-bar blues (Day 13.)
Upon graduation: Wail songs like “Oh Susanna,” bend notes, and riff simple improvisations.
Get the hang of the uke
The class: Yousician’s ukulele lessons
Course description: This videogame-like app’s ukulele section starts by showing a short video introducing fundamentals (filmed, appropriately enough, on a beach), then moves onto interactive exercises. You’ll learn chords and attempt to strum in time to a bouncing ball. Yousician listens to your playing, registering whether you’re hitting the right notes at the right time and providing feedback.
Upon graduation: Toward the end of the course, you’ll be fingerpicking along with “La Bamba,” “Waltzing Matilda,” and other hits.
Yousician - Your Music Teacher
Learn Guitar, Ukulele & Bass
Master the spoons
The class: “Spoon Playing: A Beginners Course With All You Need to Amaze” in Udemy
Course description: The kitchen will become your music studio once you’ve signed up for this course. Instructor Simon Glenister shows the ins and outs of playing spoons, along with how to incorporate them into music ranging from folk and country to techno to hip-hop (for real). Thirty-five lectures, most just a few minutes each, cover basics like how to hold the spoons correctly (the trick: a Star Trek–style hand position) as well as help you develop your own rhythmic ideas and flourishes.
Upon graduation: You’ll realize soon enough that playing spoons isn’t just a party trick—you’re learning the foundations of percussion here. As Glenister explains, “Rhythm is at the core of every musician’s tool kit.”