No matter how good you currently are, if you’re not practicing, you’re getting worse.
Here’s some of my thoughts on approaching music practice, especially when you don’t have the time for it.
What You'll Find in This Post
- The Mindset
- Practicing Efficiently, Everywhere: All the Mobile Apps
1. There will never be time to practice.
It’s very helpful to start from the premise that you won’t have the time. There will always be something else to do, starting from this allows us to think about practice differently.
2. Never practice for long, do it in small chunks, consistently.
Find the smallest time you can commit to consistently and stick to it.
No matter how small.
Is it 5 mins a day? 5 mins twice a day? This is better than doing it once a week for 1 hour or 2 hours.
You want to establish a habit of spending few minutes getting better, consistently (think of it like brushing your teeth for a few minutes a day).
When you’ve established this habit, with time, you will be doing it on autopilot, again, like you brush your teeth.
Starting is hard, but it gets easier.
My routine is 15 mins in the morning as part of my wake-up routine, 15 mins at night as part of my wind-down routine.
And trust me, it’s not always easy, but then…
3. Even in the tedium, find joy
Let me be honest:
Practicing is boring, slow, and tidious. There are so many other interesting thing you could be doing but you know what?
There is no other way to get better as a musician, no shortcuts, no tricks, nothing. But, there is a lot of joy as you get better.
For that 5 mins you will spend practicing today, put everything away.
No distractions, say to yourself that “this is me & music” time, pick up your instrument and do it.
The more consistent you are, the easier it’ll be.The boredom goes away, you seriously look forward to the next minute, it’s so beautiful.
All good you say, and you’re now wondering where to start. Keep experimenting.
Here are my recommendation on some apps that will get you going. Browse through them, pick whichever interests you and explore.
Practicing Efficiently, Everywhere: All the Mobile Apps
On your phone, you can use these apps to practice anywhere, anytime.
One important thing:
All these are supplimentary. Nothing can replace a good teacher to give good feedback on vocal technique
Here are my favorite ((I use an andriod so my recommendation might be slightly skewed)).
Hear Songs Better
A seriously important skill, spend a lot of time on this. What is ear training?2
Play & Sing on Time
Really Understand how Music Works
Perfect Ear 2 (Andriod)
Hook Theory (Web, Andriod, iOS): takes you through everything you need to know on writing good pop songs. Highly recommended
Perfect Ear 2 (Andriod)
Music Tutor (iOS)
Sight Read Factory (iOS, Andriod, Online)
NoteWorks (iOS), this is primarily of learning music on the piano, love this app a lot
On Making Beats & Writing Songs
Strides (iOS, Andriod, Online) Set and achieve those goals!
If you care for them:
- First, Learn to Practice
- Eyes and Ears: An Anthology of Melodies for Sight-Singing
Did I miss you favorite technique? Let me know in the comments below.