IFR blog > Practice tips
How to recognize melodies by ear using the key of the music

In this video you'll learn the most important technique for recognizing songs and melodies by ear. The technique is to focus on the path that the melody traces through the overall key of the music.

Be yourself and discover your own music!

In IFR, we believe that the musicians who follow their own imagination are the ones who change the world. And we want to help you discover your musical voice and to share it with the world!

Animation Video - How Music Works, part 1

This animated video for beginners explains why understanding the major scale is the key to understanding all modern popular music.

How to practice difficult movements in Exercise 1

I'm wondering about the trombone? The image you use of the notes being connected as one long chain doesn’t really fit with the trombone because the notes are not evenly spaced. Do you have any suggestions?

What makes IFR different?

Improvise for Real is now being used by both students and teachers in more than 20 countries. The method has been described as a totally different way to learn about music and improvisation. But what makes it so different?

IFR video lesson: Sound, map and instrument

In this free video lesson, I show you how you can learn to understand music by ear and to play the sounds you imagine using the "Sound, Map and Instrument" technique from Improvise for Real.

IFR video lesson: How to study chords

In this video I show you a complete system for studying new chords so that you can improvise over them with confidence, use them in your compositions and learn to recognize them by ear in the music of other people.

IFR video lesson: How to play what you hear - 5 great exercises

In this video lesson I show you five great ways to practice using the IFR Tonal Map to play the sounds you imagine.

What's the best approach to ear training?

I have tried many different methods of ear training. I have tried interval recognition apps, functional ear training and even a perfect pitch course. But I have yet to recognize a single note when listening to real music! Can you give me any guidance?

Listening activity: Recognizing the chords in popular songs

This listening activity will help you learn to recognize chord progressions by ear. We have put together a list of beautiful popular songs that use the exact same chords that you're studying in IFR Jam Tracks Levels 2 and 3.