Saturday, July 18, 2009

Practice: Swimming or Treadingwater?


Treading water is deceiving. You're working, but not that hard...and you never get anywhere.


Swimming is harder...you have to use your whole body...it makes you move foward into newer waters...deeper waters...


Practice is similar. Alot of players say they practice...a small percentage of those are actually doing it...or should I say doing it correctly.


You see, we sometimes get review confused with practice.


If you can play a figure or piece of music at an acceptable level, then each time you play back over that piece you're reviewing. Review is necessary...when you have a big test coming up, you learn the material and then review it so that it's fresh on your mind. The problem is, if you take that same material and review it for the next test (which is on newer material) you'll mast likely fail. Not because you didn't look at the material, you just looked at old material.


So what is practice? Practice is learning new material...harder material. I don't sound good when I practice...actually, I sound awful. I flub fills, drop beats, screw up patterns, hit rims...and that's ok...because the next time I drop fewer beats, flub less, don't hit the rims. And the next time I actually sound good...that's when I know it's time to move on.


Here's a few points that let you know if you're practicing...


-You sound like a 3 year old.


-Your brain hurts when you get done.


-You stop in frustration, hit the snare real hard, compose yourself...and try it again.


-There are stick shaped holes in the wall...


If you're always reviewing the old stuff you know and you sound good playing it you're not really learning anything new. You stop growing, and that's the goal of practice.


Here's the point...if you set aside the time to practice, make sure you're really practicing. The goal is foward movement...faster hands, quicker reactions, deeper groove, etc. It's harder...you don't feel as good about your playing when you leave because you still can't play it, but that's why you get up the next day and hit it again, and again, and again...and when it sounds good you move on.


So here's to sounding bad...here's to headaches and sore hands...here's to patching those holes in the wall...and here's to swimming to better beaches.

4 comments:

Kurtis said...

yes!!!!! exactly! it's good to know that those frustrated super hard snare hits are actually a good thing... but try telling that to my broken snare head... hahaha thanks keep up the good blogging

Audiyo said...

They are a great thing...expensive, yes, but great to get those frustrations out! I guess I could have added...HERE'S TO BROKEN HEADS!

Thanks for reading Kurtis...stop back by soon, new stuff is in the works...

sixtyeightstate said...

Really good post. This blog is great, keep it up!

Audiyo said...

@ sixtyeightstate...Thanks so much! I really appreciate you checkin it out.

Let me know if there's anything you'd like to see discussed. I've got some great interviews and guest posts comin up. Also, if you haven't signed in at our forum, please do (clickable link at the upper right hand corner of this page.) I'm just getting it started but it should be in discussion mode by mid week...

Thanks again and keep practicin'!

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