by Jesse Austin, with thanks to Tearaway.
The saying goes that you will be a master of something if you do it 10,000 times and while some people dispute this, it is definitely the case when it comes to you, your music and practicing.
Every artist, whether they be Kimbra and her backing band or a singer songwriter who has just started out needs to put time and effort into practice. This can be a difficult when starting out though. How do you practice properly? Where do you do it? All these things matter, and hopeful I can sprinkle some wisdom that will make your music sound better than ever!
When starting out, it can be difficult trying to find a place to place. If your parents are really nice and let you practice inside the house or in the garage, go for it! This can be great if you live on a farm, but if you are in town, the neighbours can sometimes get a bit annoyed. To combat this, try turning down your amps, and getting practice pads for the drums and it should be problem solved. If this all fails (and even if it doesn’t) try practicing at school during your lunchtime or after classes are over for the day.
There is no hard and fast rule about how often you should practice, but you should be thinking about fitting in at least 2-3 hours once a week. You may get a gig offer at really short notice, so it is important to be prepared. Sometimes this can be hard to fit within everyone’s schedules if you are a large band, but this is where commitment is important. Remember that you are all supporting each other, so if you don’t pull your weight, you are letting the team down.
This can be the hardest thing to work out, and there is no one way to go about it. It is important you set goals. Before you begin your practice, think about what you are trying to achieve, and what you hope you will get done by the time you pack up your instruments. Try to get rid of distractions. No one’s girlfriend or boyfriend needs to be hanging around at your rehearsal, and try get some solid work done before embarking on shenanigans. Make sure you are listening well to one another and how your parts glue together. Most importantly – have your stuff together. Turn up to practice with all the right gear, the right attitude, and know your parts.
Practicing can not always be easy, but just think about what is ahead! Dream of the gigs you will play and how exciting it will be to see something you have created come to life. As Will McGillivray of nomad puts it ‘To us, practice is vital. Not only does it put us in the best position to give our greatest performance musically, but it gives us confidence knowing that we have our songs down, allowing us to enjoy the moment.’
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