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3 Ways To Pwn Your Music Practice (Guitar, Drums, Etc)

December 20, 2013

playing-guitar-3-1077303-mLast week, we talked about how to suck at practicing. As promised, we are now gonna check out three practical tips to help you starting pwning it.

Pwning it, in da face.

No matter how good you think you are, there is ALWAYS something new to learn. These techniques will help you improve any skill, at any instrument. I dare you not to try ’em!

1) Find A New Technique

The first-and-foremost thing about practicing is this: It’s not improvement if you can already do it.

So you need to find something that you can’t already do, or can’t already do well. It can be a song, a section, a technique, and just about anything.

Google it! Or better yet, Youtube it! There are countless articles and websites dedicated to giving guitar/drum/bass/vocal/keys tips, many of which are free.

There are entire Youtube channels with detailed lessons, song breakdowns, and clear explanations of techniques. This is 2013. You have the freakin’ internet. Use it!

To get started, there are 3 excellent channels right here:

2) Slow It Down

Once you find the new technique/song to learn, please avoid the noobish mistake of practicing at blazing fast speeds.

If you can play it at blazing speeds, you’re not learning anything new because you can already do it!
If you can’t do it, trying it at blazing speeds will keep you from learning it.

Slow. It. Down. Slow speeds are like a microscope: they let you see all the little stuff so you know what to fix!

Though it’s optional, try it with a metronome to keep it consistent. That way, you can monitor your progress as you slowly speed it up. (i.e. Start at 90 bpm until you’re good, then go up to 95 bpm). There are all kinds of other awesome things metronome practice can do. Here’s three reasons why you should use one, and here’s four ways to help you do it.

3) Schedule Smarter

Awesomeness comes out of structure. Set a practice schedule for your new found technique.

10 mins? 30 mins? An hour? Whatever time you choose (a little bit of time is better than none), commit to it.

I use E.ggtimer all the time. It’s an online stop-watch. I love to set it up for 30 mins and just work on a technique the entire time. It’s super-effective! (Pokemon fans will love that reference)

sticker,375x360You Can Do It!

This is effective because it’s how I’ve learned 95% of everything I know on the guitar. It works if you try it! There is always something to improve and make you even more awesome than you already are, so get to it. Happy practicing!

-By Noah Copeland

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