Music Technique – 3 Steps to Improving Your Music Technique

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in Music Technique

Improving music technique is to be able to groove without concentrating. That means you have adequately learned the technique that it becomes secondary to your playing.

I’ve considered this idea as presented in Victor Wooten’s book “The Music Lesson” and I'm expressing a way to understand and actually improve music technique.

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Concentrating is the first part of the process and that involves learning a music technique, music principle, or music element through a two step process of awareness and endurance.

The third step is moving from endurance to grooving.

Try these steps to improve your music technique.

This three step process when applied can quickly get a technique down sufficiently enough for you to be able to use it and then get focused on playing without concentrating on the music technique.

    1. Get into a concentrated mode. Become fully aware of the technique you are going to acquire. Explore it from all angles.
    2. Move slowly from awareness into endurance. Start by making sure you have the technique down. Usually you will speed it up or become more fluid with it.
    3. As you can endurance (practicing for a few minutes to several minutes at a time) let distractions take over and try to maintain the technique
      • Watch someone do something
      • Watch the screen on a TV, with and without sound
      • Mediate on some issue other than the music.

Example

Let’s use a basic music rhythm example to show how this would work.

1. Awareness – learn a rhythm, discover the pattern. In our case here it’s a skip beat pattern.

theroy-rhythm-3-4time-rest-6It's counted as 1 and 2 and 3 and. You will clap where we have bold the beat counts.

|: 1 & 2 & 3 & 1 & 2 & 3 & : |

2. Gain Endurance – Work on this rhythm in a series of several steps to gain endurance.

    • Play at slow speed for 30 seconds
    • Rest
    • Play for 1 minute at comfortable speed
    • Repeat rest and play increasing time by 30 seconds
    • Do this until tired then repeat for 3 to 5 days.

3. Once you have achieved 5 minutes, start using distractions like someone talking to you or watching the TV to see if you can maintain.

4. Repeat this process until its secondary.

The essence of this process is to quickly get your technique to sufficient stage that you can apply it to your playing without having to concentrate on the technique but on the music.

I’ve effectively used this method on several music technique areas such as turns and scale note grouping to get past trouble spots. I can always tell when I haven’t spent enough time and need to revisit the technique before moving back to music.

I invite you to experiment with this method to see how it helps you.

isaac kemboi November 9, 2012 at 12:57 am

what about the vocality,does it affect the performance?
 

Brad_C November 10, 2012 at 8:44 am

Not exactly sure what you mean by vocality. But if you mean the quality of a vocal or voice, yes it would affect performance. Your ability to control that with distractions would improve performance.

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