An aspiring jazz trumpet player's blog about jazz improvisation and ear training.

January 1, 2005 Ear Training 12 Comments

Ear trainer - major update

Online ear trainer - click to try!I just finished a major update to my ear trainer software. This is the version I've been thinking about for some time. Finally, after many late nights and early mornings, it's ready!

I also updated the accompanying text with new exercises and instructions.

Try It!

UPDATE 10/11/06 - I recently finished a version 2.0 (BETA) of my ear trainer! There are several new features, including a new rhythm section that you can use for play-along purposes. Click here for more information.

Comment by Shawn

Wow. A very beautiful layout to your site. I enjoy your music ear training program, and reading about yourself (since I gandered at the link). I am glad I came here. i hope you update your site frequently for this is the best blog/resource/inspiring stories that I have seen in a while.

Best of,


Comment by Rick

Hi Shawn. I'm glad you like the site!

Yes, I do update this site regularly. I try to have at least 3 new posts each month. During the first year that this site has been online, I've been pretty good at keeping the frequency up and I've got no intention of slowing down. If anything, posts like yours inspire me to post more often.

I checked out your site. Looks like a great start. Please let us know when you get some sound clips up.


Comment by Bill Fairchild

Good Job, Rick!

I was directed to your program by a post on the JustJazz group. I, too, like to associate intervals with tunes and use many of the same ones you listed. For the ascending and descending minor 6th I think of Jobim's tunes Manha de Carnaval (Day in the Life of a Fool) and Chega de Saudade (No More Blues). For the descending major 6th I think of the spiritual "Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen".


Comment by Rick

Thanks for the suggestions, Bill! I just added them to the association list.

Comment by Shawn

Hi there. I decided to post a link to your ear trainer on the jazz guitar forum that I'm starting (check it out at shawnstrickland.net/forum/) I'm just starting it, and if you object (for any reason) to me having a link to the ear trainer I'll be glad to take it off... it's just such a great program!

You're a hero! LOL.

Comment by Eric B

Man... you have out done yourself on this one. I've got to post a journal entry to pump it up even more. The visual of the piano and notation is EXTREMELY helpful for me.

Great job (as usual).

Comment by Rick

Thanks for the links and the support, guys!

I just updated the ear trainer: in addition to major scale random melodies, you can now generate blues scale and whole-tone scale melodies.

Comment by Michael


just thought I'd say great work on the ear trainer it's helping me a lot, it's extremely useful!

Comment by Carlo

I just discovered your site. I've started to use the ear trainer and it's just the best I've seen! Hell of a job! I used other ear training software but stopt working with it after a while. Don't expect that to happen this time also because you have expressed so well the importance of playing by ear. ....

I do play sometimes simple melodies in 12 keys and once i transcribed by ear some songs of Chet Baker. But almost all of my time on learning to improvise is spent on what i call 'cognitive things'. Lets get these ear working with the tips you give on your site!



Comment by Clint

Hey, I've been using the the ear trainer quite a bit, for a couple months now.

And I'm finally starting to see some pay-off so that makes me happy.

There are a few things that I think would be helpful though. Especially for me because I'm starting at rock bottom.

1. Lock the intervals section to a given key

2. Specify a start note for random melodies.

3. Specify a 'maximum interval skip' for random melodies.

And also it'd be nice to have midi files for the songs containing the sample intervals you presented.

Comment by Rick


Sorry to take so long responding, but I wanted to let you know that I read your suggestions and agree that they would make a nice addition to the tool. I also decided to make a new version of the ear trainer in Flash (instead of Java). That will take a few months to complete. Hopefully, at least one or two of your suggestions will make it into that version. Although, by then you may be so advanced that you don't even need them!


Comment by Matthew Buehler


First, I want to say that the time and effort poured into this project make me feel real good. I really feel good when I see someone want to help others! Thank you for your efforts. I, too, am a trumpeter that has more desire than ability but I am not smart enough to give it up so I will continue to torture myself(at least until I am responsable for someone other that myself...i.e. wife, kids, etc.). I wanted to tell you that I think your name is Rick(based on the other comments left) but I couldn't find it clearly and concretely. I even looked on your, 'about me' page. I couldn't get the ear trainer to make any sound...maybe due to a non-midi compatable sound card as you mentioned. And lastly, on the song randomizer(great idea) you should put a link back to the home page or something because I hit it like 100 times and then tried to go back by hitting the back button on my browser...Please don't misunderstand, I think this is a wonderful idea...I am not a snob, I just wanna help. Thank you, Matt B.

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