Best Linux Software Applications for Guitarists and Guitar Enthusiasts

- - 1 comment
Whether you're casually strumming the chords to your first song, or enthralling a head-bobbing crowd with your 20-minute solos, there are a few applications that a guitar lover like you must have on your Linux box. Even though there are countless guitar apps for Windows and Mac, it doesn't mean that musicians on Linux should be left behind. Remember that the Linux platform has given birth to some of the most prolific songwriters of the century like Maestro Richard Stallman. His masterpiece, the Free Software Song, is still crooned by millions of Linux geeks, getting them through those atrocious weeklong coding marathons. So, there's no doubt that Linux does have some excellent applications that every guitar player would love to have on his or her computer.

Without much ado, here's the crème de la crème of Linux software applications for guitarists and guitar enthusiasts:

Guitar Pro
Even if you are a rookie guitar player, you must surely have heard of Guitar Pro, the popular guitar tablature editor and player. The proprietary multitrack editor is very useful for editing guitar (bass and six-string) tablatures as well as creating full-fledged musical scores. Since its inception, Guitar Pro has gained a lot of popularity amongst guitar enthusiasts, with the ‘gp’ files being made available on sites like Ultimate Guitar.

Initially, Guitar Pro was a Windows-only app, but thanks to the growing demand, it now runs across a variety of platforms including Mac (Intel only), iPhone, iPad and of course, Ubuntu. Currently, the Linux version of the software only works on Ubuntu as downloads are available as .deb file. The full version of the application costs about $60 and if you want to upgrade from an earlier version of Guitar Pro, be ready to shell out 30 bucks. If you want to try out a demo version of the application, head over HERE.

If you're enamored by the aforementioned Guitar Pro app but are wary about trying something that's not free or Open Source, then TuxGuitar is just the right tool for you. TuxGuitar, like GuitarPro, is a multitrack guitar tablature editor and player. It comes with great features like tablature editor, score viewer, multitrack editor, tempo management and much more. The best feature, however, is its ability to open Guitar Pro files.

As of now, TuxGuitar can import and export GP3, GP4 and GP5 files. The number suffixed to the extensions corresponds to version number of the software; that is, gp3 files are for Guitar Pro 3 and so on. The latest version of Guitar Pro is Guitar Pro 6 thus, TuxGuitar, to a great extent, serves as a nice alternative to Guitar Pro.

Here's a quote from one of the reviewers on the Ubuntu Software Center:

“Closest Open Source replacement for GuitarPro. It can play .gp4, .gp5 files. It’s great and has no fallbacks. I use it all the time!”

TuxGuitar is free and open source so grab it and pass it on to your whole band.

Apt Link:

gtkGuitune is a guitar tuning application that uses the method of Schmitt triggering to help you make sure that your guitar is always in tune. This method ensures that tuning is fast and accurate by harnessing the sheer power of your CPU. The application is free and open source and works well on Ubuntu. If you are using KDE, you might want to try Kguitune, which is a KDE version of the same application.

Apt link

Now that you've tuned your guitar, composed the score, it's finally time to record that masterpiece of yours. Don't worry though, Audacity, an amazing cross platform sound recording application is here to help you with it. We've already covered Audacity in an earlier post so I'm pretty sure you must be aware of it. The Open Source application is popular not only on Linux but also on Windows and Mac platforms.

Songwrite is a guitar tablature (fingering notation) editor and player, that is specially designed for Linux musicians. Songwrite can edit staffs and tablatures not only for guitar, but also for a variety of musical instruments like banjo, flute, and ukulele. Formerly known as Gtablature, this application allows you to print your compositions as well as play them with the help of external applications. Like many applications for this platform, Songwrite is free and open source, so go ahead and download it.

Apt Link:

1 comment

  1. One cool addition to this list is Hydrogen

    It is an awesome drum sequencer that is very useful for all musicians. It is very easy to use and the resulting sound is quite organic.