Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) today announced the launch of Fender Songs, Fender’s latest innovative app, allowing users to practice, play along and perform to millions of their favorite songs on guitar, ukulele or piano. Building upon Fender Play®, Fender’s revolutionary digital online learning platform, Fender Songs continues the journey for the beginner player while inviting those more experienced players to learn their favorite songs on-demand.
Available in the US at launch, via a subscription-based model, Fender Songs can be downloaded exclusively for iPhone and iPod touch in the App Store with plans for iPad and other platforms in the future. Beginning today, users can sign up at $4.99 per month or a 12-month subscription for $41.99 per year and get 10 percent off guitars, amps and gear on Fender.com and at participating retailers (with a 7-day free trial for both). Fender Songs will improve the player experience at all skill levels by allowing instant access to chords and lyrics to millions of songs, so that users may forge deeper connections with their favorite artists and songs as they continue their musical journey.
“Fender Songs we believe will enable players to easily and dramatically expand their song repertoire,” said Andy Mooney, Chief Executive Officer of Fender. “Goldman Sachs forecasts the number of streaming subscribers to hit 700 million in three years and top 1 billion by 2030; these are staggering numbers that bode well for Fender’s success in both the digital and analog worlds.”
Performing with Fender Songs app
Designed for players of all levels, Fender Songs addresses the challenge all guitars players face getting accurate chords and lyrics to their favorite songs. It’s great for practicing or quickly referencing chords while playing solo.
Players can use Fender Songs in three different ways: practice, play along and perform.
Review chord diagram charts: In practice mode, players see the overview of a song with chord charts, lyrics and audio, so they can work through the tune at their own pace.
Scrolling chords and lyrics: In play-along mode, players can watch the scrolling chords and lyrics, “karaoke-style,” as they play along with the song in real time.
Recording functionality: In perform mode, players can view chord changes and lyrics, and record themselves on their own device without an audio backing track, save to their camera photo/video roll and reference later as a practice tool.
Player modes are purposefully aligned with how someone might familiarize themselves with a new song, practice parts of it slowly, play it full speed from beginning to end, and then record themselves playing it. Each mode represents a different stage in the player’s journey to learning and feeling confident about a new song.
Much Larger Song Selection: Pick from millions of your favorite songs or request a new one.
Apple Music: Stream and play along to songs from your favorite artists and musical genres.
Setlists: Create ordered groups of songs to practice for a special performance or to help keep your practice time organized.
Search and Browse Features: Use the search and browse features to find songs curated by Fender staff and edited for accuracy.
Playing Tools: Access special features like accompaniment from metronome, drums, drums and bass, tempo adjustment, capo, left-handed mode and count-in.
Fender Songs marks the fourth app in two years (joining Fender Play, Fender Tone and Fender Tune) and second subscription app in the Fender digital products journey. More than 100,000 active paying users later, Fender Play has solidified its position in the market as a leading digital learning app for beginning guitar, bass and ukulele players. It’s the perfect tool for new players or people getting back into playing who want to learn new skills. On Fender Play, users get guided learning paths, lessons with instructors, video on-demand, chord charts and tablature to reference, targeted song selection to enhance learning and skill- and exercise-based curriculum. Fender Songs builds on Fender Play’s song-based approach, but curates content and experiences directed toward the intermediate-level player. Fender Songs is the natural “next step” up from the Fender Play experience, as players learn and grow on their musical journey, becoming more self-sufficient in their music making.
Fender has inked deals with major publishers including Sony/ATV Music Publishing, Warner Chappell Music, Kobalt and BMG to support artists and songwriters and ensure they are paid for the use of their chords on the app. Fender has also made deals with master rights holders, such as Warner Music Group, to ensure the chords in the app are accurate to the actual music as performed by the artists. Fender Songs represents additive revenue on top of streaming music, ensuring artists and songwriters are paid. Fender will regularly continue to add even more tracks to the service as additional licenses are procured from indies and other rights holders.
“We’re excited to expand our digital products offering with Fender Songs. Songs will allow our players to access practically any song they want and provide quick and easy-to-learn chords they can practice directly on the app,” said Ethan Kaplan, General Manager of Fender Digital. “Working with Apple Music, publishers and record labels, we’ve been able to ensure artist songs are fully licensed, taking our relationships with them to a new level.”
At the core of the Fender Songs application lies a chord detection application with an algorithm which uses both complex digital signal processing techniques and deep knowledge in music theory to automatically detect the chords of every single song in Fender’s music library in just a few seconds.
Fender partnered with key service providers such as 7Digital, LyricFind, Music Story and Music Reports as well as Amazon services such as API Gateway / Lambda Serverless, Dynamo DB, AWSCognito, ElasticSearch and more.
The Fender Songs app is available for $4.99 per month or a 12-month subscription for $41.99 per year exclusively on the App Store for iPhone and iPod touch, with iPad to come.