What’s so different about yousician.com?
Hi there, let me start by introducing myself, I am a guitar player, and may I say a seasoned one. I have been playing for over 18 years now.
I am also a tutor.
I mostly teach students looking to take advanced lessons, but I’ve had my share of beginner students.
And almost all of my beginner students want the same thing, easier lessons – more progress. And I have to be honest, that’s what I wanted when I was learning to play and didn’t have the patience.
Like most of you, I stumbled across Yousician looking for a solution to this problem. Looking for a way to help my students make practice more interesting.
Yes, Yousician is an answer to the traditional online guitar lesson sites.
I am making this Yousician review to help people find their best way to learn guitar. Yousician.com offers another solution to this, and we would be silly to overlook it.
Intrigued? I know I was!
If you don’t have the time or patience to spend on complicated online courses, but still want to learn how to play your favorite instrument, then Yousician is the place for you.
So what makes it different? Yousician is actually an application that has the task to provide you with the information and the basics of learning an instrument in a fun and engaging way. This really sets them apart from the other online learning platforms that focus on standard instrument lesson plans.
It is intended for all those who are open to using educational apps for learning musical instruments. It is ideal for tech-savvy beginners because it helps with gaining rhythm and it functions basically like a game.
This way you can trick yourself into learning because learning with Yousician can be really fun.
You pass levels and collect stars to make progress. Sounds familiar, right?
Yousician is not an app for intermediate or advanced musicians
They will most definitely find the app not challenging enough and really not helpful if they are looking to actually make progress.
The beginning develops very slowly, which is great if you are starting out. But if you are looking for something more complicated, there isn’t much that you can find here.
To get to a certain level, you need to master the most basic levels, which can be really boring.
Even though Yousician have obviously tried to work a lot of stimulating features and give people a lot of positive reinforcement when playing, you will find yourself spending a lot of time to get to the real lessons where you can actually learn things.
Honestly, I think this is a waste of valuable time. Time that can be used a lot better if the songs were simpler and you get to actually learn by playing them.
This is what you are actually getting with Yousician
Sites that offer online lessons for learning instruments tend to focus on the traditional approach. You get what you expect, a video lesson explaining the material and then some exercises for you to do on your own.
Yousician has a totally different approach to learning guitar for beginners.
You climb levels through mastering guitar-playing tasks. The good thing is that if the tone is not correct you won’t get to pass the level.
This functions well and it is a great challenge for the user.
There is a musical program for guitar, bass guitar, ukulele, piano, and vocals.
The app works on almost all operating systems, so it’s no problem if you are working with Windows, Android, iPhone etc.
You can get access to the app and get learning everywhere.
In addition to climbing levels, there are also video lessons where an instructor introduces the next stage of learning.
Perhaps the worst part and problem is that for the most part the music you are listening to in the background does not correspond to the notes you are playing. This can be very misleading and mess with your progress.
It can help with keeping your attention and getting you engaged in the game, but it doesn’t help with your self-criticism and playing.
- Interesting and pretty addicting app
- More instruments available
- Step by Step program
- Ideal for beginners
- Works with most operating systems and devices
- A limited amount of video lessons
- Is not very challenging for other levels besides absolute beginners
- Minimal song choice
- Way too expensive for the content it offers
Buckle up, this Yousician review is about to get detailed
Me being a guitar player, I focused on the guitar lessons when writing this Yousician review. It’s what I had more experience in, and how I could test the app the best.
By installing Yousician on any device it gives you lessons on how to connect the instrument to the app and start using it.
You start with the step by step program which is basically the app’s way to guide you from the beginning so you don’t encounter any challenges with using the app.
In the beginning, before you actually start playing and get to the good part, you are given a simple, easy-to-use tuner for your instrument.
If your guitar isn’t well tuned, the sound won’t be right and the app won’t be able to register the proper tones. So it makes great sense that they would go out of their way to offer a tuner at the beginning.
The next step is the virtual guitar. On your screen, you will see a virtual guitar appear, with a focus on the neck of the guitar. There will be the 6 guitar strings starting from the thickest and going to the slimmest that is the furthest on the screen.
The fields are marked with numbers for easier playing, each field has a different number, of course, and the fingers steps are marked with colors. Each finger on the left hand, with the exception of the index finger, has its own color.
If you happen to be an absolute beginner, this is quite interesting and simple, perhaps even too simple, way to explain the guitar and introduce the instrument. It also does the trick of introducing you to the app and its rules.
The first steps are mostly consisted of exercises to see if you have learned the rules of playing. This is to make sure you know how to go through the app and have mastered the basics of it. Again, this might be considered useful, but the whole process is way too slow.
The system takes its time to explain if you have passed the lessons and if not, why not.
If you are a slow learner and are really not looking to get super focused into learning, this might actually do some good for you. The app will really take its time to explain the basics.
For beginners that are starting to learn with the app, a great thing is that you cannot skip a level or a task. You are obligated to actually master the task in order to pass it. So you definitely know which level you are on.
The bad thing is, if you are not an absolute beginner, this will no doubt be a very boring and long process for you. There is no way to skip it to get to the interesting and more challenging levels. You will have to do the task to pass the level.
Did I say the whole thing is way too slow?
It bears repeating
The most useful part of Yousician are the lessons you can find between the levels.
Once you have passed a level, and before you get to the next one, you get these lessons that teach you how to position your hand, picking, chords etc.
This is the actual lesson. The game is the practice.
You will find that for everything explained in the lesson, there is also how to apply it in reality.
So yes, this is definitely not a learning app that aims at intermediate or advanced players
And I would also argue that even for beginners, it doesn’t have a very serious approach.
So if your approach to learning an instrument is to make a game or pass the time, and you are not interested in giving it more focus than needed, you will find Yousician interesting and helpful.
But even if you happen to be a beginner, but are very much interested in seriously learning how to play guitar and pursuing it with more commitment, you won’t find serious guidance or a tutor in Yousician.
The largest and the most productive part of the Yousician app is the Learn category
This category is divided into two subcategories.
Missions, which is yet another lead that the app is indeed a game.
Starting from the most basic start as you master the tasks you constantly get new ones which you get to unlock.
As you go, the tree continues to spread, and the next three branches are Lead, Knowledge, and Rhythm.
As you pass the levels, there are more complex techniques to be mastered, which is understandable.
The second subcategory is Workouts
The main challenge here, as throughout the whole app is collecting stars.
Your first challenge is going to be collecting the missing starts from your Missions.
The challenge continues with you gathering more start and possibly reaching the Gold status.
You get the idea. Basically, play the game and get more stars.
This section also has a Skill Builder that consists of Chord trainers, Learning standard notation, Ear trainer, Scales, Arpeggios, Fingerpicking drills, and Tutorial videos.
This part is very helpful and easy to navigate if you want to learn or practice a certain skill.
You will also find Cowboy chord songs, Fingerpicking songs, Songs with riffs, Barre chord songs, and Shredding solos.
The songs given in the section are intended to practice the techniques previously taught.
Let’s look at the next section – Songs
Its first half is titled – Popular.
Here you will find the songs in The Best of the Yousicians category.
These are the author’s songs where the tab is close to the actual playing, but unlike the Yousician’s exercises, these are better. Unfortunately, the song number is limited.
Most Popular Songs is the part with songs from famous bands. The song number is very limited here as well, and they are only available with Yousician Premium Access.
From styles, you will find pop, blues, metal, country & roots, classical, indie and alternative, funk, jazz and electronic. But although these exist as an option, the way they are taught is not effective. That’s why I do not recommend this section if you intend to learn something more specific.
In the part My Repertoire you will find your history, favorite songs, and your collected stars.
There are also challenges, which are weekly and of a different type. This section is quite fun because it challenges you to learn styles you might not learn on your own.
And we got to the probably most important part – Yousician pricing
Yousician offers lessons for four instruments, and each instrument costs $10 a month or a yearly subscription of $120. If you want to have access to all the instrument you need to pay for the annual membership of $180.
These are the prices for Yousician Premium Access without which the game is very limited, but it still works. Yousician does have a free version.
And I do recommend taking advantage of the free version. For absolute beginners, Yousician is interesting and quite useful. For all the rest – categorically not.
The biggest problem with this app is their refund policy and customer support.
Judging by user reactions, any complaints of any kind (mostly financial) are ignored.
What users think
I always tend to try new apps and sites with my students, just to make sure they are taking advantage of every source available when learning how to play. So when reading my reviews you will always find a second, thirds, forth… tenth opinion. What I’m saying is: I do my research diligently.
I don’t like slamming sites just because, and I don’t like praising them just because.
Here are some of the reviews I found online, just to see what other people think and if they have something to complain about or praise, that I might have missed.
Just because it’s different, doesn’t mean it’s useful
Even though the Yousician app offers an alternative way of learning lessons, I still don’t think that it’s the best way to learn an instrument.
Games like these will always focus more on the fun part, than the learning part, so you might be better off trying a more traditional approach.
However, if you are really into educational apps, here are some alternatives you might want to try if you don’t want to use Yousician.
My Music Teacher. If you are a beginner, this app offers over a thousand lessons aimed at teaching you how to play guitar. Here you will find video tutorials that will help you with learning both acoustic and electric guitar. Videos offer reading tabs, learning chords and tuning a guitar. It also works with a build in microphone that recognizes the notes you are playing. It is fairly similar to the Yousician app, by My Music Teacher focuses on guitar learning and treats it in a greater extent. If you are interested in learning guitar, My Music Teacher is a good substitute for Yousician. You should definitely try it out.
Pianu. For the wishful piano players out there, I would recommend you try this website. It helps you by offering interactive lessons. You can use it by connecting your MIDI keyboard to your computer or use a touchscreen or your mouse. The songs on the website are free to play, but if you want to purchase the whole package, it is offered at $35. The good thing about this site is that you can use it as a game and learn notes, by using your mousepad or touchscreen, or you can even get more serious and connect your MIDI keyboard and actually start learning some songs and how to play on a real instrument.
The verdict is in!
So yes, Yousician pricing can get really bad, to put it mildly.
People complain about being scammed and about not being able to cancel or get a refund. This is definitely not a good look for the app.
As for the app, it’s entertaining, I’ll give them that. I can see kids using this to trick them into learning an instrument.
It’s great for absolute beginners and it’s actually really engaging. It gives great positive reinforcement and can be kind of addictive even.
For intermediate and advanced players, not so much. Even for serious beginners, it can be time-consuming with not enough content.
So if your main focus is fun and light learning, Yousician is great.
If your main focus is on learning and real progress, step away from the game, and get a more serious approach.