Great iPhone apps from popular musicians

Nov 29, 2010
Music

I imagine the modern-day family road trip to be a car full of parents and children listening to and playing with their iPhones, sans the driver, of course. And what better avenue to find something for everyone than with music? Below is a list of some of the most original apps from some of your […]

I imagine the modern-day family road trip to be a car full of parents and children listening to and playing with their iPhones, sans the driver, of course. And what better avenue to find something for everyone than with music? Below is a list of some of the most original apps from some of your — and your parents’ — favorite popular singers. These are not just your standard bio and song clip apps. If you dream about singing with Taylor Swift and receiving advice from Lil Wayne, put on your headphones, ignore your brother’s teasing, and look no further. Your search has ended.

Lil Wayne Fortune Teller (99 cents)

The Lil Wayne Fortune Teller is not exactly like the Magic 8-Ball I turned to for answers growing up, but the concept is virtually the same. Ask a question, in this case to a crystal ball, and get a response from Lil Wayne. Instead of “Don’t count on it,” he says “”Doubt it, son,” and rather than “Yes, definitely!” he offers, “Absolutely, b—-!” Lil Wayne even has his own version of “Reply hazy, try again”: “Undefined.” Other highlights are “Lil Wheezy say fa sho” and “Lil Wayne say get outta here with that.” The ideal setting for using the LWFT app is blasting his music while really taking in the somewhat aggressive, somewhat endearing photograph of Lil Wayne behind the crystal ball.

Mix Me In2 Taylor Swift ($1.99)

The Mix Me In2 Taylor Swift app is as much fun as I thought it would be. First, you select a song — the options are “You Belong With Me” and “Love Story” — only two choices, yes, but with options as good as these, we’re talking quality, not quantity. Then you make your own mix of that song… and here is where the possibilities are endless. While the song plays, you decide which instruments you want enhanced or changed, and then you click on a character for “he” or “she” to carry out that action. For instance, Taylor either sings or she doesn’t, her guitarist plays rock, original or acoustic, and one of the guys in the far back can either be an additional guitarist or a keyboardist — you decide. And the best part? You can opt to sing along with Taylor if you’d like to, kind of like your own personalized Karaoke machine meets a session in the studio.

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Alicia Keys Open Mic ($1.99)

This Alicia Keys app is similar to Taylor Swift’s, but it’s more focused on singing. It’s just you and Alicia and the songs “Doesn’t Mean Anything” and “Try Sleeping With a Broken Heart.” You choose the level of difficulty at which you feel comfy singing — easy, medium or hard — and then you sing along with Alicia and her backup vocalists. The app automatically keeps your score as you sing though I’m not sure exactly what you’re being judged on — keeping up with the music, your pitch, how good your voice sounds… Regardless, any excuse to sing along with AK to her own songs I’m down with.

Billy Joel Lyrics Studio (99 cents)

As it turns out, Billy Joel is not the only one with a “Lyrics Studio” app, but (a) he’s probably the best of them all, and (b) it’s a pretty cool app concept so I can see why a lot of musicians would want one. This app really cleared up some mysteries for me — in the song “Josephine,” I always wondered what Billy was saying in the line “Would your love turn sour and moldy green?” Now I know. And “Back in the U.S.S.R.” was a whole blur of confusion, but I finally heard it clearly on my last listen after studying the lyrics: “B.O.A.C.” in the line “Flew in from Miami Beach B.O.A.C.” Who knew?! Other songs included in this app are “The Entertainer,” “Don’t Worry Baby” and “New York State of Mind.”

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Katy Perry Revenge ($3.99)

You knew it was coming… what would this list be without Katy Perry, and without a Tap Tap Revenge game? There’s really no better way to listen to a song you love by an artist you adore even more, than to listen while you tap. If you are still new to the Tap Tap Revenge games, the gist is that you choose a song, from three Katy Perry songs in this case, and then you tap along to the beats of said song as they come sort of flying at you in the form of balls or stars, etc. You score points by how many objects you actually catch in time, and all the while images of Katy Perry striking poses are gracing the screen. Next time I feel like listening to “Teenage Dream” and playing a game on my iPhone simultaneously, I know just where to turn.

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Jesse Sposato

Jesse Sposato is a Brooklyn-based freelance writer, and one of the founders and editors of Sadie Magazine, an online counter-culture magazine for young women.

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