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I just wanted to add to the many comments here about how poor Smartmusic's accompaniment features have become since the release of the web version.  As a professional trumpet player and university teacher, I'm no longer able to use Smartmusic in my studio due to the laughably poor accompaniment sounds, regression of features, and severe reduction of titles in the instrumental solo with piano area.  Why would any company allow such a poorly planned and executed product be released to the public?  I think it would have been better for Smartmusic to simply announce they would no longer support "solo w/ accompaniment" titles and be done with it.

I read a long post here by one of the company's admins that goes into depth to try and explain their position.  Of course, it boils down to dollars and cents.  Smartmusic has to make money by getting band directors to use their products and either isn't interested in supporting older musicians or doesn't have the staff to do it.  I get it - the company has to make money.  The admin notes how the price of Smartmusic is very low, much lower than streaming services.  Right - that's nice, but honestly I would pay much more than $1.70/mo to have proper accompaniment software.  How about a two-tiered system where band kids/directors can pay $1.70 to turn their assignments in and professionals can pay, say, $10/mo to have the old software return, receive updates, new features, etc?

Anyway, it's so disappointing to see what's happened to Smartmusic in the last year.  I think the company has alienated a large percentage of its former users but my hope is that they will listen to the many complaints and suggestions offered on this forum.  Perhaps they will come to the realization that, yes, their "classic" product was far superior in virtually every way to the current offering and they will work to repair these relationships that they built over the years.

As it stands now, Smartmusic is unusable as accompaniment software at any level so I guess our best hope is that a competitor will emerge who can bring back quality accompaniment software.

2 comments

  • Avatar
    Ruben Flores
    1

    Agree, classes was a better program and much easier on the payment.  I would have 15 computers in the practice rooms for students to use on campus, and the vast majority would purchase a personal copy for home.  Worked out great.  This new subscription pricing is killing me with 250+ kids.  I can't ask them to purchase individually anymore and the district won't pay the new higher price.

  • Avatar
    Jack Wise
    0

    Amen!  You have not stated the poor transcription of many pages within titles, bad key choices(even when the original was best), bad range choices( A's, G's, F's below the staff for flutes and saxes), etc.  These items are on titles that would be used for middle school and high school.  Another example that would be relevant for college or perhaps high school, a Mozart flute trio that has only the first movement available.  The Creston Sonata for Alto Saxophone is NOT in New Smart Music, even though it was in the old, and I know it was used by other teachers than myself.

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