Ep. 111: Behind the scenes of my favorite piano learning app, Piano Maestro; With JoyTunes’ Becki Laurent

Piano Maestro app by JoyTunes

Piano Maestro by JoyTunes (app store screenshot)

Piano Maestro by JoyTunes is the one subscription I DO encourage my students’ parents to use because it is so effective, motivating, and fun! JoyTunes Music Education Specialist Becki Laurent explains her favorite features, how the app came to be, and tips for teachers and students alike.

Becki Laurent
Becki Laurent


My guest today is JoyTunes’ Music Education Specialist, Becki Laurent. Becki is joining me today from West Texas. In addition to her work with Joy Tunes, Becki is the director of a music school; she conducts teacher workshops and promotes the use of tech to make teaching easier.


We discuss:

  • What IS the app and what does it do?
  • The story behind how the app came to be.
  • Our favorite features and cool feature we wish more people knew about.
  • Different ways that teachers utilize Piano Maestro within the lesson, outside the lesson, and during that “crossover” time between students on a lesson day.
  • Piano Maestro is for iPad only.
  • Songs included in the app represent all genres, holidays, and levels; many standard method book songs are included.

 Connect/Other Resources

In-Episode Promo

This is a quick break to tell you about the digital sheet music site I have used for probably a decade! Sheet Music Direct is powered by music publisher Hal Leonard. They have more than a million sheet music arrangements that you can view – and listen to – right from your device for convenient online shopping and immediate downloads of educational, classical, and pop scores representing any genre and holiday. Prices start at $0.99 and you can both print your purchases instantly and access them on any device, which really comes in handy for our family when we’re out of state visiting Grandma & Grandpa, and they want to hear my kids play the piano! Sheet Music Direct has saved me countless hours of driving to music stores and sifting through bins of sheet music and books to find the right song (and hoping the perfect song isn’t out of stock). Access the latest hits and yesterday’s classics at sheetmusicdirect.com.


Becki shares the powerful story of her daughter’s discovery of Learn Mode for “Shut Up and Dance” in Piano Maestro.

Closing Words

You may have noticed there was no episode release last week! If you listened to the last episode, Ep. 110, you know that I recently started a new job with Schmitt Music, a music company headquartered here in the Twin Cities. I’m in institutional sales for them, selling pianos & keyboards to universities, schools, and houses of worship in several states. (So if you’re looking for a piano, let me know!) I’m also still teaching this fall in order to give my students time to find another piano teacher. So with this busier schedule, I’ve changed the release frequency to once a month instead of weekly. I’m secretly hoping to release a couple episodes each month instead of just one; either way, just be sure you’re subscribed and each episode will be conveniently delivered to your device whenever it is released. Subscribing is free – just hit the plus or follow button in your podcatcher. You can also be emailed whenever a new episode is released. Just go to mpetersonmusic.com/podcast and click the envelope icon in the sidebar that says “Email me when a new episode is available.” In January, I will be done teaching and will be back to weekly releases again. I want to include a shoutout to Podcast Magazine – I was so honored to be the featured music podcast in their August issue. And since the my last podcast episode released, I received a print copy in the mail from them. It was such a treat to have that show up in my mailbox; thank you, Podcast Magazine for that extra touch! I did post pictures of that on social media. If you haven’t connected with me yet there, please do! You’ll find me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.  I want to congratulate a couple listeners who were winners of our recent book giveaways – Maddie in MN won the drawing for the brand new book, How to Talk When Kids Won’t Listen, by Joanna Faber & Julie King. (They were guests on Ep. 106) This book is the latest installment in my FAVORITE series of books for teachers & parents, the How To Talk series. Congratulations also to Jesse in London – he was the winner of the e-book How to Hook Your Customer With Music, by Pavle Marinkovic (from Ep. 107). A special thank-you to Jesse for the review he left on Podchaser.com – Jesse mentioned “My 12 year old son has been playing music for years. And while I am not musical I have really found the podcast useful in terms of learning more about his journey. He has just gotten into a strong music programme and I have suggested this as a great resource to compliment his rigorous studies.” I thought that was such a cool reason to listen – it was a way for this Dad to enter into the interests of his son and be a part of that journey even though he himself didn’t have a musical background. Thanks for sharing that, Jesse, and for taking the time to write a review – I really appreciate that. If you enjoy the show, I’d really appreciate you also leaving a review on Podchaser or Apple Podcasts. That is a huge support and really makes a difference in helping others find the show. Thanks so much for joining me today. If YOU have a favorite Piano Maestro feature or a favorite music learning app, I’d love to hear about it! Let me know on email (mindy@mpetersonmusic.com), Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn. All links, as well as today’s show notes and a transcript of this episode are at mpetersonmusic.com/podcast; this is Ep. 111. All links are also in the episode details right in your podcast app. Until next time, may your life be enhanced with music.

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