Interactive Listening

Two Chicago Music Teachers Remix Music History and Get Apple's Attention with iBook

Apple picks Interactive Listening as Editor's Choice iBook.


Chicago, IL -- (ReleaseWire) -- 05/16/2013 --Interactive Listening iBook Chosen as #1 Editor’s Choice by Apple

Interactive Listening announced today the launch of an ingenious new approach to music education with the release of its Interactive Listening iBook, recently named by Apple as the #1 Editors Choice in all categories of textbooks.

Interactive Listening is the brainchild of Pete Carney and Brian Felix, music educators and jazz musicians in Chicago, who were tired of the “dead-end” approach of using traditional textbooks to teach music. Instead they created a compelling iBook (interactive book) for iPads that remixes education with technology. “At last, music history is fun!” said Vandercook College of Music President Charles Menghini.

Created for digital-savvy students, Interactive Listening features Hollywood-style graphics, interactive 3-D instruments and computer games. At the same time, the iBook includes interactive educational content spanning 35,000 years of music, with sounds from every continent, from prehistoric cavemen to Beethoven to Coldplay. “I’ve never seen anything like it.” Jennifer Foxx, President of the Phoenix Music Teachers Association.

In its early release in select markets in the United States, Interactive Listening is winning rave reviews.

“It’s thorough, and beautifully conceived,” said Barbara Freedman, author for Oxford Press.

“This book changes everything for education, not just music,” said Mike Lawson, executive director of technology in music education in Nashville.

“This book is the next step in education. Thanks for paving a way forward,” Jay Berckley, music director at the Village School and TED Conference Speaker.

The Interactive Listening iBook was designed for schools that are replacing traditional textbooks with iPads. The self-published digital title is priced at $14.99, ten percent of the $149.99 textbook price Carney and Felix paid for a comparable textbook in college.

The Interactive Listening iBook is available immediately on the Apple iBookstore for downloading at $14.99, and available in eight countries, including the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

To view the multimedia assets associated with this release, please click:


About the Interactive Listening iBook
Music Educators Carney and Felix sought to create a more relevant, current experience for their students with Interactive Listening.

“We used the tactile experience of gaming and visual graphics from Hollywood movies to help music teachers in high school and college compete in the digital world,” said Carney, “Listening to classical, jazz or Tibetan music can be an entirely fun new experience if you’re receiving instant quiz feedback about your listening skills. We discovered that students had a blast playing musical games, such as dragging and dropping parts of a symphony into the right order.”

Carney said students are more engaged and drawn into their new interactive way of conveying the drama, history and elements of music.

“Instead of reading about the great composer Beethoven, we created listening homework for the digital world,” said Carney, “We found that students want to discover music, express themselves and test themselves, not read boring biographical fillers and factoids. The Internet is full of information about when Beethoven was born, but that doesn’t teach you how to understand his music. We believe our interactive approach instantly brings home the impact of music to our students in way old textbooks never could.”

The Interactive Listening iBook features:

- 120 built-in musical examples
- 50 tactile interactive games
- 220 interactive pages and 10 videos
- 2 live webcam links to famous places in music history (Paris and Venice)
- 50 instantly responsive quizzes and listening tests
- 200 high-resolution images of global music

About the Creators of Interactive Listening
Pete Carney teaches at the City Colleges of Chicago and Saint Xavier University, and is Assistant Band Director for Chicago All City Jazz Ensemble. As a saxophonist, he has performed and composed music for Grammy winners, including Kirk Franklin, Tito Puente, the Winans, and the Plain White T’s. He studied composition with William Bolcom and William Albright at the University of Michigan and classical saxophone with Donald Sinta, before completing graduate school at Florida International University and the University of Miami. As a Jazz artist, Pete Carney headlines Jazz festivals in the U.S. and overseas with his group Orange Alert. He was the first American to be featured at the Aberdeen Jazz Festival in Scotland. He lives in Chicago with his wife, Caroline. For more information and music go to

Brian Felix, Ph.D is a music performer, composer and educator. He is an Assistant Professor of Music at the University of North Carolina at Asheville where he teaches classes on jazz piano, jazz history, music business, the Beatles and the Grateful Dead. His ensemble, OM Trio, has toured extensively throughout the U.S. and garnered considerable critical acclaim. Felix holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and lives in Asheville, NC, with his wife, Bridget, and sons, Sean and Gavin. For more information, visit