Posts Tagged 'learning'

Why learn music theory?

“Why learn music theory? I don’t want to be restricted…”

To the uninitiated, music theory is often thought of as being a set of rules that must be obeyed.

This is not what music theory is about

Music theory is a well-organised system of naming and describing music and how it works. Learning music theory brings meaning to what would otherwise be an anonymous sequence of chords or notes.

Whether a musician plays punk, funk or Paganini, the same names and descriptions apply, and it doesn’t matter ...

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Do guitarists need to learn to read music?

A common quote about reading music

“…and do you know, [insert name] can’t even read music? Isn’t that amazing?”

We’ve all heard this line or something very similar to it.

To someone that dabbled in learning classical piano or violin back when they were at school, it might seem that the ability to read music is essential. But really it’s nothing more than a method of communicating information.

So, do guitarists need to learn to read music? This depends primarily on two things:

  1. The style of music they ...
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There is nothing natural about playing guitar!

My tennis years

Why does an article called ‘There is nothing natural about playing guitar’ start with tennis? Bear with me…

When I was in my teens, my friends and I joined the local tennis club. It was a small place with no coaching so none of us knew what good tennis technique was. We just battered the balls around with boundless enthusiasm in a way that felt right to us.

A couple of years later, with our abilities having developed steadily from ...

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Guitar practice and spreading yourself too thinly

Time, our most valuable resource

Music is a vast subject with many different styles and areas of study. Time is a limited resource that very few of us feel we ever have enough of. How can we make the best use of the time we have with regard to guitar practice?

Having a well-structured guitar practice regime helps enormously to keep you focused on specific skills and tasks that you want to master (if you don’t have one yet click here for a free copy ...

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Is it ever too late to learn guitar?

“Is it ever too late to learn guitar?” is something that a lot of people ask themselves when they’re considering taking up the instrument. Many regret not having learned an instrument at school, or not having stuck it out.

Some worry that they will now find it too difficult. The implication here is that learning to play an instrument is easier for children than adults. Is there any truth to this though?

My view on whether it’s ever too late to learn guitar

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A short essay on musical education

To learn or not to learn…

Around the time when I first decided to study music, I was introduced to an aspiring guitarist by a friend.

We started chatting about who inspired us, and who we were listening to at that time. We shared similar tastes in music and it was a nice conversation – right up to the point when I mentioned that I planned to study music full time in London.

‘Why would you want to do that?’ he asked disapprovingly, followed ...

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