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Guitar Practice (Part 2) - Does Practice Make Perfect?
You've probably heard the saying "practice makes perfect" and it sounds true enough, but is t really? We all know the importance of practicing a new skill in order to become proficient at it. This is especially true when it comes to playing the guitar, or any other musical instrument for that matter. But, practicing incorrectly can actually be a detriment to your progress.
How is that you say?
Because you will continue to reinforce whatever it is you practice. So, if you always practice doing something the wrong way, you will end up with the wrong result. For example, if you practice holding your hands in a poor position, it will eventually become a habit that will be difficult to correct. Poor position of either your right or left hand when practicing the guitar can create tension, thus making certain techniques more difficult to execute. Poor hand position can also increase the possibility of developing injuries that are somewhat common to musicians, such as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. This is a very debilitating injury of the wrist which can bring your guitar playing to a complete halt. When practicing, use a "cupped" hand instead of a "flat" hand to help promote a good relaxed position.
Another problem area for some students regarding guitar practice, is rhythm. Rhythm is so foundational to every aspect of music that I really can't stress its importance enough. Whether or not you know how to read music isn't the issue. But you absolutely should try to learn how to count the beats within a given measure of music in order to play the piece correctly. If you can't keep time, no one will really be able to tell what you're playing anyway. It will also be very difficult for you to play along in a band, or with other musicians who just want to "jam."
Speed is one of the biggest practice obstacles I see among my students. When speed is king, rhythm and timing are often sacrificed. It is absolutely necessary to SLOW DOWN in order to interpret the timing correctly, especially if it is a fast lick or strumming pattern. Speed also affects articulation, which simply means "to pronounce distinctly." What good is it if you can play something real fast,but do it poorly? Who is going to be impressed with that? Instead, take your time and practice playing each tone clearly, at a speed that is comfortable for you. Try using a metronome or drum machine to set a tempo. Then practice short "speed bursts" one section at a time. Keep increasing the speed until you can play the entire lick, riff or measure, etc. at the desired tempo. But, do not sacrifice hand position, rhythm or articulation in the process. These three things should receive top priority when practicing the guitar. After they are well established, work on the speed or tempo of the music.
Knowing what finger position to use when playing notes on the guitar fretboard is also important. If you use a haphazard or random approach, you will likely become confused and disoriented as you begin to move around. I tell my new students that the guitar is "upside down and backward" to give them some idea of what they're facing when it comes to learning the notes on the fretboard. Meaning that the guitar is played both horizontally and vertically, as opposed to the piano which is a linear instrument. When learning to read notes on the guitar, you must flip it upside down to match it to a fretboard diagram. Down is up and up is down when referring to direction and how it relates to the pitch of each string.
To sum things up:
1. Start Slowly
So, it is true that "practice makes perfect" if you learn to develop a "perfect" practice routine. In order to do this, you will need to work on establishing your priorities and developing good practice habits. Realize that it takes time to become a good musician so don't rush the process, instead, embrace it and enjoy it.
If you keep these ideas in mind you should see a steady, progressive improvement of your overall playing in a relatively short time. You will also discover that when you develop good habits, you automatically develop good technique. Once you have established good technique, playing the guitar will seem much easier and that will make it all worthwhile in the long run.
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Kathy Unruh is a singer/songwriter and webmaster of ABC Learn Guitar. She has been writing songs and providing guitar lessons to students of all ages for over 20 years. For free guitar lessons, plus tips and resources on buying a guitar, songwriting, recording and creating a music career, please visit: http://www.abclearnguitar.com
Are iPods Changing the Way We Listen to Music
They're everywhere, and not only are they everywhere, they look cool too. Since its launch in 2001, 10 million have sold and 8 million of those were in 2004. So welcome to the next generation. 8 tracks, records, cassettes, CDs, and now the iPod.
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Music Licensing: The Cold Cash Facts About Money for your Music
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A Dying Cat And A Nylon String Guitar
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This article is designed to help anyone to enjoy karaoke and improve their singing performance whether it be as a "virgin" karaoke singer or as someone starting out on a singing career. It contains tips designed to help old hands and newbies alike achieve a better karaoke singing style. The best piece of advice is to bear in mind that one of the whole idea behind karaoke is that it doesn't matter how good(or bad) your singing is - you are singing for your own enjoyment. The people in the karaoke bar are there usually because they enjoy karaoke too, so it is not expected that you perform like the next American/Pop Idol. In fact some of the most boring karaoke nights I have been to have been spent watching a succession of pretty decent singers. If I wanted that I would go and see a show.
How To Make Money On A Music Website Through Pay-Per-Click?
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Vintage Guitar Collectors Can Still Find Deals
If you're a recent vintage guitar collector, the stories you've heard are true. You once could step into pawn shops or flea markets and find vintage Gibson Les Pauls and Fender Stratocasters for $50 to $100. True. These guitars now sell for thousands of dollars on Ebay and Gbase.
You Cant Force Play
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Recording Vocals at Home
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A Brief History Of Gibson Guitars
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The Dark Side of P2P File Sharing
P2P file sharing programs are free. Period. But there are P2P scam sites out there that want you to pay them instead. P2P scam sites are rogue companies that have set up shop to fleece unsuspecting music downloaders looking for file sharing programs by charging a fee for an otherwise free service.No P2P file sharing software costs money. Exceptions would be a site asking members to make a monetary donation to help pay for bandwidth, hosting costs, and other administrative costs.Some P2P file sharing programs offer "pro" versions of their free software. But again, their basic service is free to the public. I want you to fully understand this, because paying a P2P scam site money can not only make your wallet a bit lighter, it can also make your computer vulnerable to dangerous spyware.That's right. These scam sites are only interested in making money off you. As well as actually taking your money by fooling you into paying them, they'll make money off you by installing spyware on your PC, so that they can get paid by sharing your online habits and personal information with others.For music download beginners, all of this can be very confusing. Why? Because these scam sites advertise all over the Internet. Search engines return results chockful of these scams alongside the real P2P file sharing programs; their banner ads riddle the Internet landscape; sites are promoting these scams to get their piece of your money.Most real P2P programs don't advertise much on the Internet. The reason is that they're not money makers. It takes money to advertise, and who has more money--the free P2P file sharing programs or the scam artists? You guessed it. P2P relies on word of mouth. The scam sites rely primarily on advertising.How Can I Tell a P2P Scam Site?This is the easy part, if you know what you're looking for. P2P scam sites often use phrases like 100% Legal, which is absolutely untrue. This is a trick they use to prey on people interested in P2P file sharing programs, but who are worried (rightly) about Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) lawsuits. Keep in mind that sharing and downloading of copyrighted files is, at this moment, an illegal activity.Another tactic is to use fake endorsements and recommendations from legitimate companies. Other cons are to use phrases like Direct Downloads!, Get Access Now!, Download Unlimited Free Music!, and other phrases that are promising you things they absolutely CANNOT deliver.How Does It Work & How are They Doing It?To be honest, I do not know the ins and outs of P2P scam sites. But I know this: all P2P file sharing programs are free. Think about it a moment. It is because music files are being shared free of charge (without artists receiving royalties) that organizations like the RIAA are mad and suing.These P2P scam sites are merely taking your money, downloading a little spyware to your PC, then connecting you to one of the real P2P file sharing programs. This is all convoluted by the nature of P2P, which is a series of servers networking files to one another. Unless you're buying your music MP3 downloads from a legitimate company, either per song/album or through a monthly subscription, you cannot be sure where your music is coming from.The legal status of P2P file sharing programs is confusing. We know that MP3 files themselves are not illegal. For example, it's legal to possess MP3s, to rip your CDs to your hard drive, and to burn CDs for your personal use. But, by sharing and/or downloading these files, you are breaking copyright laws. To my knowledge, P2P scam sites are not actually breaking any laws. But why pay for something you don't have to?One of the most common techniques these scam artists use is to set up sites that are misspellings or derivations of popular P2P file sharing programs. KaZaA is probably the most hijacked name being used these days.Other sites may not actually charge you anything at all, but they'll "give you the software for free" if you give them your email address. This too is a scam. Because once again, they're just sending you along to a proper P2P program, but after collecting your email address, they're selling it to third parties. Don't give these scammers any of your personal information!If you're on a website you trust, even this website, you may see ads by these scam artists, preaching their lies about 100% blah, blah, blah. For your own security, don't click on the links. They're still scams. (Many independent websites rely on ads to pay the bills. We don't always have full control over what advertisements appear on our sites. Keep in mind that most online advertisements are arranged and distributed by third-party companies who pair up advertisements with appropriate keywords. So a page that discusses "music downloads" is likely to have an ad from a scam site singing their own false praises.)On this note, there are sites all over the Internet that actually promote P2P scam sites. Why? I have my opinions. First, these scam sites are paying large sums of money to affiliates who promote their sites. For example, a scam site may be charging you $29.95 for their non-service. Well, they're paying affiliates over half (I've seen the pay-out as high as 75%) of that just for getting you, the visitor, to their scam sites.I Think I've Used One of these Scam Sites. What Do I Do Now?Stop! Right now, stop using that service. If you've got some type of monthly payment with them, stop paying them. Cancel your "membership," contact your bank or credit card company, and stop paying them immediately! Secondly, your computer has probably have been infected by spyware, and you need to remove it right away. I recommend purchasing spyware-removal software like Pest Patrol because they do the best job at clearing out spyware parasites.If you've been pulled into a scam site, just rack it up to experience. Their ad copy is very convincing, and you just wanted to "be legal" while downloading. Take heart in knowing that you're not alone. But you're better off now, with this information at your disposal.In my opinion, this is another reason to consider not using P2P file sharing programs as a means to get your online music. I think that these P2P scam sites will increase in number, and will use more clever tactics to get your money and your information. Until the peer-to-peer communities are regulated in some way, I fear that these types of activities will get worse before they improve.
Improvisation and Musical Form
Do you ramble on endlessly with your improvisations? If so, good. This has its place in music making and in new age piano playing in particularly. Just listen to New Age pianist Michael Jones's music to hear an example of this kind of free-form improvisation.
Born into musical family, Michael Jackson is as big as ever today
Michael Jackson was born Michael Joseph Jackson on August 29, 1958 (making him 47 as of year 2005) to Joseph and Katherine Jackson in Gary, Indiana. He was the seventh of nine siblings. The Jackson family was raised as Jehovah's Witnesses and practiced door-to-door evangelization. Despite being known as the cute and talented lead singer in Jackson 5, a band that he formed together with his other siblings, he is now better known for his flamboyant style and negative press.
Tips on Performing Your Music for Others
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Kenny "Axil" Rose (Lead vocals), D.J. "Slash (Lead guitar), Joshua "Duff" McKagan (Bass Guitar/backing vocals), Terry "Izzy" Stradlin (Rhythm guitar/backing vocals) and Chuck "Matt Sorum" Johnson (Drums/Percussion) make Guns N' Roses. The group has ridden a wave of success and failure spanning decades, which is almost unknown in the Heavy Metal music scene. Many fans of Guns N' Roses believe that Guns N' Roses is a Heavy Metal Rock band that is larger than large and has a collection of songs and hits not known to the Heavy Metal music scene since the Sex Pistols.
How Many Guitar Chords Do I Need To Know?
Guitar chords, (chords played specifically on a guitar,) differ only from other types of chords by virtue of instrument; they're simply a series of three or more notes played together. These notes don't necessarily have to be played simultaneously, however.
Review: Coheed and Cambria - Second Stage Turbine Blade
Ever wonder what would happen if you mixed the progressive showmanship of Rush with Dashboard Confessional's emotional escapism? Me neither, but Coheed and Cambria has been described as that exact mix-up more times that I'd like to recall. While it's easy to understand the Rush comparison, with lead singer Claudio Sanchez's high-pitched vocal delivery. The emo label is a little less obvious, the band's sound may fit into the 'emo' genre, but the lyrical content certainly does not.
How to Create Backing Tracks If You Dont Play All the Instruments... or Any
Congratulations! Your singing has become amazing, and it's time the world knew. You've also written some songs that are just kick you-know-what. They need to be recorded, MP3ed and put on the net ASAP. But you've got two problems. First, you can't afford a studio, let alone a band for all this stuff. Second, you don't play all, or any, of the instruments.
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