4 Ways to Improve Your Music Making Without Practicing — Alex Taylor Lessons
Practice makes perfect. But did you know there’s other things you could be doing to improve your singing or playing? Here are 5 non-practice related things you can do to get better at making music:
Take care of yourself! Life can get overwhelming at times, and music can very quickly become a chore if there’s too many things going on in your life. Often time things are out of your control, so it’s imperative that you have some kind of support system for whenever it does. Reach out to friends and try to do things that make you feel happy and connected to others.
If you can, find a counselor or therapist that you can check in with whenever things get too overwhelming. It’s important that you feel like you can trust your counselor, so don’t be afraid to search for someone that feels right. Asking for help can be hard, but it’s way harder to bear an emotional burden all on your own.
Your body is responsible for making your music, so you should treat it well! Eating healthy foods in reasonable portions will help keep your body in tip-top music-making shape.
Although tempting in the lifestyle of music, try to avoid too much alcohol, especially leading up to a big performance. Too much will numb your brain from making all of the preparations you need to have the best performance (though, of course, celebrating a good performance is a different story — if enjoyed legally and responsibly).
Exercise will clear your mind and keep your body ready to do all of the physical things you need to do to make music. Many musicians advocate for some kind of yoga practice to regulate your body and your breathing.
Listening to music is probably what got you interested in the first place, so it’s good to go back and remember that! Try to listen to music more critically — how does this music work? What instruments do you notice? Do you notice the musician using any of the techniques you’ve learned in your lessons?
Think about what kinds of music you like and dislike. Why do you like or dislike them? Engage with your favorite music more than you would by just passively listening to it. What new things do you discover?
Listening to music on your phone or in your car is a completely different experience from listening to music live. In a world free of the coronavirus, look up some local music venues and plan to go see performances. Most colleges and universities offer free tickets to their classical or jazz ensemble events, and a lot of these ensembles are really good. For rock or folk concerts, if you’re of age, look into local bars to see what kind of music they’re putting on. Usually you have to pay a cover to get into these events, but it’s a really awesome experience, especially if you’re used to sitting in a dark theatre watching concerts that way.
Notice what feels different when you’re at a live concert versus listening on a device. What do you notice about the musicians? How does the music sound different? How do you feel different listening to the music?
There’s a lot of ways you can improve your music making without practicing. Taking care of your mind and body as well as engaging with music both streaming and live can expand your musical mind and body, and it will make your own music-making more rewarding — and fun!
Originally published at https://www.alextaylorlessons.com on September 3, 2020.