3 Ways to add to your sheet music library without paying a dime

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You just installed a brand new digital sheet music viewer – like MusicFolio – and you aren’t sure where to start.  Or maybe you’ve been using one for a while but want to step up your sheet music game.  Either way, here are a few tips to take your collection from mailbox library to Library of Congress without dropping any coin.

If you need help getting your music onto your iPad, check out this post.

Online

There are countless options here.  The hardest part is weeding through the useless sites to find useful music.  If you do a web search for ‘free sheet music’ the majority of pages you’ll see aren’t going to get you anywhere.  But, once you find what you’re looking for chances are the digital sheet music viewer you use can import music directly from the site.  If you’re a classical musician, try IMSLP.org, the Open Music Library, or musopen.org.  If you’re not, you may have a harder time because of copyright restrictions.  Guitar players looking for tabs can try https://www.guitar.ch or the ever popular Ultimate Guitar.  For UG, you can make use of the print function on your web browser to convert these tabs to PDF.  If you know exactly what you’re looking for try a more specific web search using the format “[Title of music] sheet music free”.  It’s amazing what you’ll be able to track down.

A Friend’s Music

Just like my sisters raided their friends’ closets, you can raid your friends’ music collections.  The only difference is that with a digital sheet music viewer you don’t have to give it back when you’re done.  Many apps come with a feature that lets you use the camera to load music.  Or, if your friend also has a sheet music viewer take advantage of the share feature it probably has and email yourself a copy directly from her app.  No more borrowing and forgetting to return your friends’ music!

Music from concerts

For the professional, semi-professional, and serious amateur musician this is my favorite.  If you freelance, it isn’t uncommon to head to a gig and not have your music until it’s handed to you when you show up.  With a digital sheet music viewer, not only will you likely have some of that night’s music in your app, but you can also take advantage of the moment and import the music that’s new to you using the camera on your tablet and keep it with you forever.  Win win!

What are some of your favorite ways to add to your music library? Let everyone know in the comments below.

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