What do you use for playing along with songs/backing tracks?

Spotify. There are plenty of blues backing tracks.

Their utterly failed “crackdown”, you mean? The same day it started custom adblock filter code was available to bypass it. Later the same week most adbkockers were updated to work again natively. The only thing YouTube achieved was to make adblockers better than they were previously.

So yeah, YouTube is still an ad-free option, and the main channel I use has already been linked above. I also use Riffstation, which is discontinued but still available for download.

I take the .mp3 file of the song and load it into my Boss RC-5 looper pedal. You can buy .mp3 files of songs on Amazon for 0.99 USD.


After your post I reactivated my adblocker and so far YT has been ad free. There’s a little glitch as if its about to launch an ad but then the video starts as normal. As yet I have not watched any of my regular channels, who’s video were being hit with ads every few minutes. I would not mind if it was like TV where the ads are every 20 minutes or so. But the YT frequency is excessive and a general PITA. My 0.02 euros. :sunglasses:

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Yes, but do they?


I use SessionBand on my iphone and play both the backing and guitar through a Roland Cube Lite. Making a backing progression in a range of styles is relatively quick and easy. I sometimes use iRealPro which has a huge range of backing tracks.

YouTube certainly has its problems but they won’t be solved by people blocking ads

Only every 20 minutes? Wow, not where I live!

Is it the consumer’s responsibilty to fix YouTube’s problems? I don’t use an ad-blocker, but not for any altruistic reasons. I just never had much success with them on Safari. Perhaps they have improved since I last tried them.

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I’ve been using Chordify. I think it works well. I think they are running a special. their website says $1 per month. Worth a try for that price.

Jamzone. You used to be able to buy the song tracks individually but now they have a tiered monthly subscription platform.

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Yeah, I’d be ok with ads say at the beginning and/or end of a video, and support the idea of the creator getting some revenue. But when they’re every few minutes in a 20 minute video, it’s just ridiculous. Creators need to push back themselves as excessive ads encourage the use of adblockers, which in turn hurts their own income.


Hey all!

I got the Transcribe software and I use that to slow down the songs I am learning to where I can comfortably play them in a relaxed way. I use it to slowly loop tricky bits and practice songs at different velocities to see how I am coming along with the finger movements required. For example, once I can do the chord changes smoothly I might put the speed at 75% of actual (or even as low as 50% in some cases) and start playing the changes at that speed. After a week I might bump it up to 85% and see how my fingers cope with that (if it’s too fast for me and I am amking lots of errors I immediately slow it back down to 75 %. My point is that I thingk there’s value in playing the progressions at varying percentages of full speed until you are able to get it up to proper tempo. . .anyway that’s what I use. . .oh, and I import the songs to transcribe from my digital library of MP3s . . . I don’t use pay platforms for guitar practise. . .

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I use Songsterr for that. You have to pay to use that feature alpng with some others, but with all the great things it provides I think it worth the money.

I may have missed something here but I don’t use backing tracks to play along to. In fact never really thought about using them.

I use a few for the blues solo lesson and the improvisation lesson in Gr 2. And I admit, I have wanted so many times to be able to turn off the guitar part of songs in the Musopia app so that I could see how good or bad I was sounding. But it is interesting, the folks who have responded, how many of them use backing tracks in some fashion.

Some benefits…

  • If you are learning a song it can be handy to play along with the original to make sure you have the tempo and the feel of it right.
  • A lot of people remove tracks so they can replace the original guitar or vocals with their own.
  • If you are learning blues lead and you don’t have any jam buddies then it is pretty much essential to get a backing track to play against.
  • It helps you “ride through” mistakes rather than stopping. Most times if you don’t stop then no-one will know you even made a mistake (or they will think you meant to play that G# b11/#13 chord.)
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Another vote for Jamzone. Never heard of it until I saw the link further up. Signed up today and been using it to play along. Managed to install the app on my PC using android simulator and run it using the usb cable from pc to katana amp—sounds great and helps fill the gaps from Justin’s app.

I wouldn’t sweat it. I don’t really use them currently much either. It depends on what you are playing and what you want to do. I am mostly working on classical and finger style, so they aren’t really helpful.

I use YouTube mostly to watch versions of the songs I am playing. It does help to play along to a slowed down video, I am trying to do that more. With this thread, will look at some alternative apps to slow songs. YouTube is not great at that.

If you are working on improvising leads, trying to make music out of a scale or chord tones, or just exploring, jamtracks or backing tracks are helpful and quite fun. Saves needing a looper to set your own backing track. You ca also work on chord progressions, timing and rhythm strumming along with a backing track. I probably should do this more.