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Welcome to Musician War!

Published: Tue August 01, 2006  News Feed

Musician War is an international community of musicians who help and encourage each other to improve their musicianship. Our main tool is two-member on-line competitions. We use these competitions to stretch our skills and expose strengths and weaknesses in our ability. Each competition is an opportunity for members to critique each other's efforts and to collectively find the answer to the question "what makes one piece of music better than another?"

How It Works

1. Members upload MP3 recordings of their own playing.
2. Entries are paired by rules set up by the participants.
3. Each competition lasts for 3 days.
4. Entries are judged and evaluated by other members.
5. The participants learn and improve.


This site began in late 1999 as guitarwar.com. The idea for an on-line voting game for guitarists came from Peter Larsen, a key contributor to the guitar lesson site guitartricks.com, and was implemented by Jon Broderick, webmaster of guitartricks.com. The first ever on-line guitar war was held in February, 2000 between Jon Broderick and David Farmer (also of guitartricks.com).

Several months of painful learning ensued. To our surprise, people would go to great lengths to cheat the system, either by stuffing the voting box, posting songs they did not play, or speeding up their entries. Several more months of changes to the system yielded greater security in voting and the formation of a cheat committee proved suprisingly effective at ferreting out dishonest players.

In 2001, Bass War spun off from Guitar War. In 2002, Bass War came back.

In 2002, we created the challenge system, which allowed any competitor to challenge any other competitor, either personally through grudge match or by skill matching based on win/loss average. Challenges further added the ability to specificy genre, same backing track, or solo performance. The custom rules option was a surprise hit with members, allowing any criteria at all to be applied to the entry and judging rules.

In 2003, we changed the site name to Musician War. We created Synth War and Team War to allow for all modern instruments to have a place in our community. Synth War allows keyboardists, midi composers, and DJs to compete with each other in challenges. Synth War entries provide a wealth of information about home recording and have been a welcome addition to our community. Team War allows members to collaborate on music together and post against other teams in a Team Challenge. Teams share files, each member adding a track, until the final symphony is ready to post.

In 2004 the site had a facelift, and began to look the way you see it now.

In 2005, we added Vocal War and Songwriting War, as well as the member presence and voting volume indicators. We began Showcase, our first non-competitive event. We also added Bass Pro War and Synth Pro War to encourage and highlight our most skilled members on those instruments.

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