What Types of Play-Along Covers are Most Helpful?

May 20, 2024

In today’s video I want to pose a question to you! Specifically, of the play-along covers I include with most of my song lessons… which format do you find the most helpful? Over the years I’ve experimented with different types of playthroughs, including:

  • Some where I show the lyrics and chords
  • Some where I show the chord progression and strumming
  • Some where I show the tabs for each line
  • Some where I sing along
  • Some where I make a separate video for the cover
  • Some where I play things simplified and slowed down
  • Some where I use no graphics, and keep a wide camera angle
  • Some where I include an audio drum track
  • Some where I include a looped backing track

If you could only pick 1-2 items from the list above, which are most helpful in your opinion? Or do you think this is different for each song, and entirely context-dependent? I would love to hear what you think!

Please understand that it isn’t possible for me to do everything above for each song lesson I make. This would require multiple play-along covers, which can quickly become unwieldy and impractical. Likewise, cramming too many graphics on screen (lyrics, chords, strumming, tabs) can likewise create legibility issues that I try to avoid.

I’d love to hear your feedback… feel free to email me or better yet, post in the community forum (linked below). Thanks so much!

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Jump in the conversation with other members of the Song Notes community! Post a comment about this lesson, ask a question, or even upload a video of your progress. All skill levels welcome!

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How to Browse My Play-Along Covers…

Click here to see search results for play-along cover — which is a tag I’ve given to each lesson where I play through each section of a song. Sometimes the play-along cover is part of my main YouTube tutorial, and other time it’s a separate video embedded somewhere on the page.

How to Browse My Backing Tracks…

Click here to see search results for backing track — which is a tag I’ve given to each lesson which has either a video or audio backing track (sometimes both). Audio backing tracks can typically be downloaded for off-line use, giving you a steady drum-beat to play over while practicing.

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