Category Archives: News

Gigajam Single Sign on for SWGfL Merlin Learning Platform

GigajamVLE has both a Local Authentication for single school users as well as single sign on through Shibboleth 2. Schools in the South West Grid for Learning can login into GigajamVLE using their Shibboleth credentials at:

For schools using Merlin who wish to have access to award winning music content for their students please contact our MD Brian Greene. Your students will be able to use a single username and password to access all their resources and tools through Merlin, including Gigajam.

Brian Greene |:t 0800 055 6797 |m:07976 208859 |e:

Gigajam now available in more than 100 UK Local Authorities

Gigajam across the National Educational Network

Gigajam’s award winning Essential Skills Course is now available in more schools than ever before with agreements that make Gigajam available in over 100 of the UK’s Local Authorities.

The UKs Regional Broadband Consortia lead the way in implementing the aims of the government’s strategy for ‘Harnessing Technology’. Six of the 13 UK RBCs, which make up the National Education Network, now provide all of their schools with access to a significant taster of Gigajam content.

Gigajam’s vision is to make learning a musical instrument available to All pupils and students, free at the point of access. We have a lot of hard work to do in enabling all students to be able have access to musical instrument lessons, whether they are at school, or at home, but we continue to make significant progress in support of the aims of our government’s Music Manifesto. Personalisation, Independent Learning and Assessment for Learning are just some of the ways in which Gigajam ‘Harnesses Technology’ to create genuinely affordable, sustainable and progressive opportunities to support music making in and out of the class room.

How to access Gigajam through your RBC

The first five lessons can be accessed at school from the participating RBCs listed on our National Education Network page.

For more information then please contact Brian Greene, Managing Director:


t|0800 055 6797

Gigajam available to all pupils in Buckinghamshire

Students can learn the guitar, bass, keyboard and drums courtesy of the Bucks Grid for Learning. The Online Music School can be accessed by all students in Buckinghamshire via . Students can study in school, or at home by simply logging on to the Bucks GFL.

Gigajam Junior Drum School is also available in Bucks and is especially suitable for students aged 7-10.

Please contact Brian Greene if you require any more information, or help in using Gigajam in Bucks.


t|0800 055 6797

Gigajam hits the high notes in Warwickshire

We have reproduced a Case Study developed by Warwickshire County Council ICT Development Service

Gigajam interactive software provides educational resources to help improve pupils’ ability to play music and enhance their enjoyment. Gigajam provides pupils with immediate, real-time analysis and feedback on playing techniques when plugged-in instruments are used.
Pupil’s own instruments can also be used inconjunction with instructional videos and audio files to play along with. The software is best used in a structured music lesson to enrich the teaching and learning experience. Gigajam can also be used as an extra curriculum activity to promote collaboration and help foster a music community and culture within the school.


Kineton High School wanted to use Gigajam to:
• Encourage participation and learning of music through the performance of a musical instrument.
• Encourage pupils to work together by performing in a band.
• Harness ICT to facilitate personalised learning in a classroom environment.
• Enrich the teaching and learning experience by making the lessons interactive and more enjoyable.
• Promote a community culture within the school.


Kineton High School has over 1000 pupils and is a rural, Sports College. In April 2007, the ICT Development Service worked with Kineton High to install the Gigajam software and set up a dedicated classroom where it could be used with different musicalinstruments. This involved setting up displays and working closely with the music teacher Dr James Haughton to understand how best to use the software with the pupils.


Initially, six pupils of mixed musical abilities and ages from Key Stage 3 and 4 regularly used the Gigajam software as an extra curricular activity. The pupils used a mix of their own instruments and midi instruments which ranged from bass, guitar, drums and
keyboard. Working together, the pupils regularly participated to play rock music with the supervision of their music teacher. Plugin
instruments could also be used with Gigajam to further enrich the learning experience for real-time analysis. Using a projector and a sound enabled whiteboard, the music teacher engaged the pupils with a starter activity. The pupils then logged onto the school curriculum network
and opened up the lesson. Pupils followed the instructions and played the individual elements of the lesson, bringing it alltogether towards the end of the lesson. The lesson was analysed to highlight the elements of good playing and where changes were needed to be made such as
notes, chords and tempo. Pupils used this information to improve their performance and could ask for help where necessary from
their teacher or from other pupils.

Impact and Outcomes

Since using Gigajam, the pupils have:
• Personalised their own learning when playing a musical instrument.
• Worked collaboratively together to playmusic.
• Used the real time analysis andfeedback to help improve their ability to play their instruments.
• Thoroughly enjoyed the sessions and encouraged them to participate moreactively in music.
• The school is planning to purchase further midi instruments and extend the experience to Key Stage 2 pupils in the local vicinity.
• The school is working with the ICT Development Service to allow remote access for pupils to use the software at home as an online resource.


• Gigajam does not rely totally on being delivered by a qualified music teacher. Anyone with a musical interest or background that has the confidence to use ICT equipment may support the use of Gigajam.
• It can be used flexibly in a structured music lesson or as an extra curriculum activity to promote collaboration and build communities.

Pupil Voices

Pupils from year 7 and 9 were asked about their experiences with Gigajam, here are just a few comments:

“I like the ability to choose my own pace and revisit elements where I feel I need more practice”

“Great to be able to try out and learn a second instrument, which normally I could not afford to do”

“..approach is very good as it explains the aims and objectives and introduces new notes and techniques step by step, backedup by video clips”

Teacher Voice

Dr James Houghton has been very impressed with Gigajam and said;

“I am looking forward to observing the impact of Gigajam on music lessons within school and will link observations with Open University research I am currently undertaking.”

“Pupils have been keen to remain after school to enable them to work on Gigajam and are very enthusiastic about the approach

“Gigajam pupils are to make a video demonstrating their new skills . This will be shown to other pupils in the school to promote interest.”

Useful website addresses personalised learning (access through Warwickshire broadband to 5 free lessons)

Yamaha EZ-AG guitars imported for Gigajam

Yamaha EZ-AG

Yamaha approved dealer, One Man Band, continue to supply Yamaha EZ-AG guitars for Gigajam and a fresh consignment has arrived for 2010 sales, with more on order.

The popular MIDI controller guitars are brilliant for use with Gigajam’s award winning Analyser software and as MIDI controllers for use with music technology desktop recording applications, such as the range produced by Steinberg. The EZ-AG doubles as a bass guitar.  

Please contact either Brian Greene (Gigajam) or David Cooper (One Man Band) for details.

Music Manifesto Pledge Renewed 2010

Musical instrument tuition for ALL through eLearning

Aim of Planned Activity

Gigajam’s Vision is to provide the opportunity for every child to learn a musical instrument, free at the point of access, through the provision of a progressive, sustainable, scalable and affordable solution which harnesses technology, provides continual and formative assessment and is accessible anytime, anywhere.

Gigajam continues to develop its products, services and partnerships in line with the aims of the music manifesto, the strategy under-pinning Harnessing Technology and the opportunities presented in Ofsted’s report, Making More of Music 2005-2008.


Gigajam interactive music school is at the forefront of musical instrument tuition through eLearning.

Gigajam won the BETT award (British Education Teaching with Technology) for its Essential Skills Course for guitar, bass, keyboard and drums.

Gigajam’s lesson content and software is now available in more schools than ever before with agreements that make Gigajam available in over 110 of the UK’s Local Authorities.

Gigajam’s unique content and software are truly interactive and enable students to follow a progressive pathway of study (equivalent of debut grade to grade 5). Students can store all of their performances online in an ePortfolio, which automatically scores students work providing both continual and formative assessment.

Gigajam launched their new GigajamVLE to integrate with the development of Learning Platforms enabling students access to their lessons content and software anytime, anywhere via the internet.

Gigajam and Yamaha start 2010 with renewed vigour promoting their vision of the Music Classroom For the Future, which would enable 100% participation in musical instrument tuition through eLearning, in secondary schools.    

Gigajam can be viewed in action here:
Bradley Stoke Community School
Pleckgate High School
Tiverton High School

Buckingham Primary School

Who is the activity aimed for

All school pupils aged 10-16
Adult learners
College students 16-21
Classroom Music Teachers
Music Service Teachers

Duration of activity



The landscape of music education has changed significantly since the Music Manifesto’s Report Number 2.

Although the government has been generous in providing the funds for the many excellent wider opportunity schemes at KS2, it is well understood that sustained musical instrument tuition remains an activity that is generally enjoyed by a minority of pupils and usually requires a parental cost contribution. The two main issues are:

I. Large scale progressive participation in learning a musical instrument is unaffordable under existing structures and,
II. Even if there were enough money to pay for instrumental teachers there are simply not enough music teachers to deliver the number of lessons required to give every student a chance to learn a musical instrument.

We do not in anyway suggest that the Music Services and the wider opportunity schemes are not succeeding in providing a significant uplift in the level of participation, but they are limited by the nature of the scheme and level of funding, which restricts them, largely, to one year of whole class instrumental learning for primary school pupils.

We believe that Gigajam provides:

1.  a continuation of instrumental support for students benefiting from wider opportunities.
2.  personalised and progressive support for students to learn a musical instrument at school and at home.
3.  an affordable and sustainable model, that sits alongside wider opportunities, musical futures and the traditional music service provision, enhancing the total offer to students.
4.  an opportunity for funding to be accessed for music from eLearning, leaving music funding intact for existing services.
5.  support for students to develop skills that enable them to benefit more deeply from the National Curriculum.
6.  support for students wishing to gain accreditation through a variety of awards including BTECs, Arts Awards etc 
Additional Information

We believe that Gigajam’s proposition, goes some way to addressing many of the key recommendations highlighted in the second music manifesto report:

1. address the aims and objectives of wider inclusion in music education identified by the Music Manifesto.
2. be delivered using existing education structures
3. create a sustainable model of musical instrument provision
4. be delivered through high quality partners and manifesto signatories
5. make best use of emerged and developed technology
6. significantly increase participation and inclusion – providing a ‘Universal Music offering’ free at the point of access and which can be scaleably extended to every child in the UK through their school career
7. reduce the level of variation in provision in terms of both quality and access
8. be funded through current funding streams and will not rely on additional music money, or diversion of existing funding from music funding
9. support the development of extended days and school’s community responsibilities and services
10. provide wider opportunities in terms of Keys Stage 2 initiatives as well as the true spirit of ‘Wider Opportunities’
11. provide demonstrable progression for musicians to add to Musical Passport/Young peoples arts award and accreditation
12. develop structures for FE & HE Colleges to create closer ties with schools for the development of more Qualified Music Teachers, whilst providing centres for Continuing Professional Development for the existing workforce

Gigajam&Yamaha BETT 2010 – Creating Musicians

Music Classroom of the Future - Creating Musicians

Gigajam&Yamaha will be launching their Music Classroom for the Future education solutions during the BETT show at Olympia in January 2010. BETT is the world’s largest ICT in education show and will be visited by over 27,000 delegates involved in education.

Brian Greene, Managing Director of Gigajam said, “Gigajam&Yamaha have shared a vision that all children can have the chance to experience learning a musical instrument over a sustained period. We have been advocating, through the government’s Music Manifesto,that increasing participation requires a technological solution to support and enhance the existing methods of delivering musical instrument tuition.

We believe that 100% participation is possible with Gigajam&Yamaha – music instrument tuition through eLearning – and that the focus now needs to be turned towards young people in secondary education, ensuring that programmes are progressive, sustained and provide continual assessment.”

John Hillier, Commercial Director of  Gigajam said, “This year we are heavily focused on Local Authorities,  Schools and Academies who our looking at transforming learning for the creative arts through the use of technology.”

Gigajam will be joined on stand by Yamaha ‘s much respected Education Manager Bill Martin, together with David Cooper, Director of One Man Band, Gigajam’s appointed Yamaha supplier. To demonstrate Gigajam’s use in UK schools music teachers Ian Wright, Head of Music at Tiverton High School and Sean Ashmore, Head of Music at Pleckgate High School will be visiting the stand to demonstrate their schools’ work.  Both schools are Gigajam Accredited Interactive Music Schools and will be presenting their ideas on harnessing technology and how it has increased participation and engagement in music.

For more information on Gigajam&Yamaha Music Classroom for the Future, then please contact:

Brian Greene |T: 07976 208859 |E:|W:

The Gigajam&Yamaha Creating Musicians stand can be found on the National Gallery, Olympia, London  Wednesday 13th Jan – Saturday 16th Jan. Stand number V20.

Jools Holland and Julian Joseph inspire

We have worked with our good friends at Brentford CLC in producing the first two films in what, we hope, will become a long collaboration in producing high quality content for musicians.

Our partners, Yamaha UK, very generously asked their artists Jools Holland and Julian Jospeh to help with producing these inspirational interviews which provide a unique and personal insight into the world of professional music.

Brian Greene, managing director of Gigajam said, ‘It is a huge personal joy to have these two artists contributing. I have a good personal friend who plays Sax for Jools, and Julian Joseph’s Proms appearance, with his big band, remains a key moment in my relationship with music – we hope you enjoy watching them.’

About Jools Holland

Jools Holland is a composer, pianist, bandleader and broadcaster. In this beautifully recorded video Jools provides his overview of the business of music and how he became involved.

From playing pubs in the East End docks as a teenage greaser, to leading his rhythm and blues orchestra and selling millions of records this century, it is his passion for music that has made Jools Holland into a doyen of the music scene.

Jools was awarded an OBE in 2003 for his services to the British music industry. He is married with four children and lives in a world of his own.

We hope you enjoy watching this inspirational interview with Britain’s much loved pianist and band leader.
You can see the video on the Gigajam YouTube Channel here:

About Julian Joseph

Julian Joseph is one of the most important jazz musicians in the world, best known for his piano playing and band leading, Julian though is one of those musicans who shares his musical journey and plays an important role in jazz education.

He was central to the launch of a jazz syllabus for the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music, is patron of the Jazz Development Trust and, always keen to pass on his knowledge and skills to aspiring players, regularly building time into his touring schedule to advise and nurture students of all ages.

We are delighted to present this beautifully filmed interview providing an inspirational overview into the world of music.
You can see the video on the Gigajam YouTube Channel here:…ltd#p/a/u/1/DVDqhtTdy1Q

Thanks to our partners, Brentford City Learning Centre, Dave Jones of DJPR, Yamaha UK and Alma Pictures.

Please visit our partners who project managed and created this video for their educational TV station.

Ultimate thanks to Jools and Julian for their generousity and involvement.

Congratulations to our good friends at Brentford CLC on the launch of their TV station.