Chrome Music Lab
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Chrome Music Lab (CML) is a collection of online music experiments, with no cost or login. Each experiment allows students to explore sound and music making.
Key Learning Experiments
By far the most versatile experiment is the Song Maker tool. Set out like a piano roll app, with very accessible features, it allows instant composition to occur, through to intricate musical ideas to be explored.
Hitting the save button generates a unique URL that can be used to share your composition to others or access your own creations again later.
A small range of sound banks can be chosen between, as well as some drum kit accompaniment.
Other Learning Experiments
Summaries of each tool are given below. Click the image to go direct to that tool on the CML website.
Shared Piano is a great tool for playing piano on screen, by either using mouse or fingertips on screen, or by using the keyboard or a usb midi keyboard.
The keyboard sound can be changed, and note names and labels. Note representations appear as you play.
By sharing the link to others, several students can play the same piano at the same time.
The Arpeggios experiment allows learners to hear each chord but played one note at a time, and in different patterns of the intervals.
A range of major and minor chords can be chosen and explored, with increasingly complex arpeggio patterns.
The Spectrogram lets students view a picture of the sound that is being produced. It is ideal to compare low and high sounds, and view how the frequencies move across the screen over time. You can compare prerecorded sounds and also record your own voice or sounds to review those as well.
Sound Waves a great single purpose experiment that allows learners to visualise the air molecules moving as sound is produced. The magnifying glass allows a closer look as a wave-like graph.
Use he piano to explore different pitches.
Rhythm experiment allows learners to explore building repeating patterns in various different sounding instruments.
With each different team, the length of the pattern changes from four beats to other beat patterns.
The Kandinsky experiment does a great job of allowing simple drawings of dots, shapes, lines and curves to be represented in the various sound groups available. Very accessible for younger learners especially, students can draw their shapes and then try them out played by three different sound banks.
Voice Spinner does a great job of allowing learners to record their voice or other sounds and play like a record player. Learners can then explore the impact of spinning forwards, backwards, faster or slower on the sound played.
Melody Maker is stripped back version of Song Maker, offering a single line of piano roll to be created, edited and played back. A great start for younger learners, as placing a new note above or below a previous choice will replace the earlier one.
Piano Roll is a good bridge between Melody Maker and Song Maker, as it demonstrates not only how old fashioned Piano Roll players would have viewed music, but also the effects of having more than one note playing at the same time; polyphony and harmony.
Chords plays and shows the three basic notes for the chord, for any key pressed on the virtual piano. Major and minor chords can be created. Root positions only so far, but a really useful and clear tool to introduce chords to younger learners.
Oscillators allows learners to explore how an oscillator makes sound by vibrating, and how changing the frequency (speed) of that vibration effects pitch. By dragging up or down they can control the speed. A number of different oscillators are available to explore.
Harmonics is a visual representation of the simple relationships between a set of frequencies. These are twice, three times and four times as fast as the original. By plucking each string, learners can hear those note relationships.
Strings is a great little tool for exploring the relationships that naturally occur between pitch and string length. A good example is that you can hear octaves between the first sting and the second which is half the length.