Often times we find ourselves in situations where we are unable to practice our instrument.
Maybe the volume is too loud for you to practice in the space you're in, maybe you're traveling, or maybe you can only play during limited hours in the day.
These situations happens all the time... so what do we do?
Here are 10 ways you can become better at your instrument... without even being near it.
Learn from the greats, and use their vocabulary to develop your own personal sound concept.
#2. READ BOOKS ABOUT MUSICIANS
Learning about the life of a musician who has been successful in their genre can provide great insight on how to (or how not to) succeed at a career in music.
#3. PRACTICE A NEW DISCIPLINE
Take up painting, writing, photography, or anything creative. Music has always been (and will continue to be) influenced by non-musical art forms.
When you write a piece of music, you start thinking “Big Picture,” which helps you to focus on the role of your particular instrument.
#5. GO SEE LIVE MUSIC
Professional musicians and educators spend a lot of time on stage, but we can’t forget what it’s like to be an audience member as well. Go enjoy the concert experience and soak in the inspiration!
#6. LEARN A NEW INSTRUMENT
Becoming familiar with another instrument allows you to 1) communicate with other musicians more effectively and 2) recognize what other players would expect from YOU on your instrument.
#7. READ MUSIC MAGAZINES / ARTICLES
Knowledge is power. Subscribe to music magazines for news, interviews, and lessons relating to your instrument.
#8. DISCOVER A NEW ARTIST
We all have favorite artists/albums, but it’s important to check out new music to keep things fresh and to get new sources of musical inspiration.
#9. WATCH INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEOS
Be a musical sponge, soak up as many approaches to playing your instrument as possible. YouTube is your friend!
Many books have been written about the power of visualization. In your next practice session, work on everything as you normally would, but WITHOUT your instrument. Instead, visualize the physical movements made and sounds created, the way you WANT them to be. The next time you pick up your instrument, you’ll notice a difference. Try it!