How To Practice Music
Practice is everything
In music, learning and life. It’s simple: the people who practice every day in a focused way are the ones who are successful. Talent and age have nothing to do with it. Contrary to the old beliefs, practice can actually be fun. And it stands to reason that if it’s fun you will just want to do it more.
There are three big things to remember…
- Play every day
- Practice well
- Manage your emotions
You are a musician if you play every day. This has nothing to do with talent. It’s a choice, and it’s something that you can do. These articles and lessons will help you with this.
Learn and practice a new tune or skill by mastering very small bits at a time. If you break something down into small steps, you’ll have small wins which lead to bigger wins over time. This is a cornerstone of the FiddleHed method. It’s also known as “Deliberate Practice”, “Micro-learning” or “Chunking”.
- The Physical Challenge of Fiddling
- How To Build Your Fiddle Skills
- Fiddling With Deliberate Practice
- Fiddling With Desirable Difficulty
Looping is the practice of continuously playing one small piece. By doing this, you move from thinking and struggling to playing music.
A drone is a continuous tone that serves as a reference to keep you in tune. It makes practicing even technical things like scales and bowing feel like music. So you will enjoy
- Drone Practice
- Drone tuning the notes on the D string
- Perhaps the best method for playing better in tune.
- One Drone, Many Tunes
- Play a musical game called “Dronopoly” in which you play tunes that use the same drone.
- Drone Central
- This is a library of drones for every note.
- You can also find drones for common keys in the Practice Toolkit below.
Become aware of what and how you practice. This will make the process more fun and productive. You’ll come to see even the hardest challenges as something interesting.
Overcoming the emotional challenge
No matter who you are or how long you’ve been playing, you are facing emotional challenges when you learn something new and challenging. Here are lessons to help you overcome these challenges.
- The Emotional Challenge of Fiddling
- Six Ways To Overcome Fiddle Frustration
- Fiddling With A Growth Mindset
- Make Friends With Your Doubt
- It’s Never Too Late To Start
- Don’t Give Up!
- I Can’t Fiddle Fast Enough!
- I Just Can’t Make It Sound Good Today!
- Overcoming Fiddle Demons
- Developing Confidence
- End on a High Note
Power practice habits
- Fiddling with chords and melodies
- Fiddling With Rhythm Loops
- Fiddling With Transposition Loops
- Play Every Thing Twice
- First Things First
- Slow Down To Speed Up
- Take An Intermediate Step
- Mix Up Your Music Practice With Interleaving
- Alternate between listening and playing
- Alternate between a tune and its scale
- Music is a fun way to upgrade your mind
- The Three Phases Of Learning A Tune
- Repeat A Thousand Times
- How To Play With A Beat
- Listening Is Practice Too
- Listening Is Practice Too, Two
- What to do when you’re stuck
- Remember to Sound Good
- Make Up Your Own Exercises
- Make your own scales
- The Goal of a Good Process
- Three Phases of Learning a Tune
- Hey, Play Us A Tune!
- Practice Like A Master
- Learn it by heart with heart
- The Four Elements of Good Sound
- Play It Casual
- Practice Just To Practice
- Practice, even if it doesn’t sound good
- Speak With Your Fiddle
You first want to establish a consistent daily practice. Once this is established, you want to make your practice well using strategies like looping, micro-practice and chaining.
If you practice well, you’ll gain a series of small wins. These wins will help you overcome difficult emotions like doubt and frustration. Then, you’ll be more likely to practice tomorrow. In this way, you enter a virtuous cycle:
7 responses to “How To Practice Music”
Jason’s best advice is “Do it 1000 times.” He’s not kidding. Create muscle memory.
These are great ways to practice. I have fallen off the horse a few times but I seem to get back up and try again. Always trying, always learning!!!
It’s not how many times you fall off the wagon, it’s how fast you can get back on! 🙂
Jason you have a lot of videos on how to learn the fiddle that being said my question is after going thru all of the material for beginners the modules that is ok now in what order of the rest of the videos that you have posted would a person want to start learning my Problem is I need something in front of me to go by and follow a road map so to speak can you help me have been playing for around a year now Starting feel at a loss please help thanks Jeff
First, congrats on the new wondrous journey with your daughter.
Here’s some fun feedback. I barely got started on the fiddle when I had a shoulder replacement in January. I can’t play my fiddle yet, so taking the opportunity to ear train by humming, tapping and audiation. Your program is a gift because my untrained ear has been a pitfall in past attempts.
Now I got a piano keyboard and it is so fun and usefull for doing the exercises and memorizing tunes. I know this will pay off big time when I can pick up fiddle again.
Right now, when I’m repeating patterns and learning to distinguish between notes, it’s actually helpful not to also be paying attention to finger placement and bowing. It’s kind of like a pre-program to the program. When I can fiddle next month, I’m going to start at beginning again.
Anyone out there who was told to “mouth the words” as a child (there are hundreds, if not thousands of us) take heart. You can learn to hear and play, even sing, in tune.
Thank you Jason for this incredible program and your constant encouragement. Your spiritual path shines through and resonates.
More inspirational writing .
Thanks for your help and sound advice Jason.
having hard time! had lots of mini strokes .can’t seem yo get brain to work. been practicing