Thursday, April 18, 2013
Quincy Jones' New Playground Sessions Targets Music Education
Can the web teach you how to play the piano? Quincy Jones--the famed composer and record producer--thinks so, and has co-founded a new company aimed at helping anyone learn to play the piano on their home computer. Jones--who lives in Bel Air--is behind Playground Sessions, which is hoping to make music education available to anyone willing to sign up for a monthly membership. The startup--which is based in New York--charges $9.99 a month for access to high definition video tutorials from Jones, David Sides, and others. Jones was showing off his new startup this week ahead of receiving the Ahmet Ertegun Award for Lifetime Achievement at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame today.
Part of Playground Sessions' model is teaching students from a library of popular music-- Michael Jackson, The Jackson 5, The Police, Miley Cyrus, One Republic, etc.--which users can purchase and learn via the site. The startup also leverages USB and MIDI keyboards to connect users with those lessons.
Jones' new startup is among a large number of music-related, Southern California-linked technology and online startups, and not the first in the music education area. Just this week, Music Mastermind--a music creation app developer--announced a funding round; Miso Media has drawn acclaim for its iOS-based apps for teaching users guitar; Rock Prodigy has been also aiming at using smartphone technology in the guitar market.