This is likely going to be a pretty large effort that we really want to do correctly. While we could in theory extend the current dictation to include some chord progression training, we are more interested in rethinking the entire experience for a couple of reasons. First, the whole thing is still on Flash, which will soon be removed from the internet, and so it needs to be redone anyway. Second, the current dictation part of the site started out as just a fun side project, but is not, in my opinion, the most effective ear trainer.
Ear training is something that I am personally very passionate about, because I believe that being able to recognize and understand chords and melody is an extremely rewarding part of being a musician. Just as the Hooktheory Book Series was designed to teach the “practical” aspects of music theory, we ideally want to design an ear training platform that teaches you the skills that you (and most Hooktheory users) are most interested in.
As a personal aside, I studied classical piano growing up and went through a fairly conventional music theory/ear training regimen. When I got older, I realized that I could name intervals and chord quality with ease, but it was much harder to listen to my favorite songs on the radio and know what was going on musically. Part of this was that I was trained to listen for classical devices (cadences and chord progressions typical in baroque and classical music), and part of it was that I was great at hearing piano music, but as soon as you use a voice as the melody and an electric bass or synth defining the harmony, I was lost. Nowadays my ear is very good at pop music, but I can’t help but believe that there is a more direct way to this end goal that doesn’t involve Bach as an intermediate step.
We’re currently focused on tying up some loose ends with Hookpad and the site, but anticipate that an ear training platform is starting to make a lot of sense for our next big project. We’ve been brainstorming a lot, but would love to get ideas and feedback from our users as well.
We appreciate your patience, and will post updates as we start fleshing out the project.
It would be cool to use Youtube videos for the audio, since you already know where the chord progressions show up in scores of Youtube videos from the crowdsourced Theorytabs. The ear trainer could play small snippets of different Youtube videos so the user can identify the progression. This would help people with identifying progressions in the wild: the problem @Ryan says he ran into after ear training using mostly piano music.