5 Things To Know Before You Start Playing An Instrument
Playing a musical instrument is a beautiful hobby for anybody who has been doing it for some time. You can take a break from your primary instrument and return to it with new eyes and ears, and you can even come up with some interesting musical ideas that you would never have had if you were only playing your main instrument. There’s a chance that learning another instrument could help you book more performances. Familiarity with music may make learning a new instrument much more straightforward, but mastering many instruments is not without difficulties. Here are some things I’ve done to improve my proficiency on various musical instruments.
Begin slowly and patiently.
It’s tough to remember what it’s like to be a novice after we’ve achieved skill on one instrument. It might be difficult to be unable to execute ideas in your brain that you could easily perform on your main musical instrument when you take up a new instrument on which you are not adept.
The innate reaction in this situation is to attempt to force the thoughts out and push yourself to perform beyond your boundaries on the new instrument. Unfortunately, this is a risky method; at best, you’ll acquire a lot of poor habits; at worst, you might get performance injuries that will limit your capacity to grow on your new instrument and potentially even harm your talents on your main instrument.
Take your time. You’re a newbie once again; enjoy it! Play your scales at very slow tempos while listening to “Mary Had a Little Lamb” until your ears bleed. It will be worthwhile.
Rely on your current technical understanding
If you play an instrument that is related to or comparable to your main instrument in any manner, there will most certainly be some technical overlap. You may use your technical knowledge to help you design your new musical instrument more quickly.
You’re obviously out of luck if you’re a clarinettist attempting to learn the drums or a bassist trying to understand the bagpipes. Choosing a new instrument to double on related to your main instrument will result in the most rapid learning and prospective gig chances. For example, many violinists double on mandolin and viola, sax players often double on flute, drummers acquire hand percussion, guitarists learn banjo or lap steel, and so on. Of course, you’ll have to learn the technical aspects of your new instrument, so you’ll already have a leg up by using some of your existing talents.
Get familiar with musical theory.
Everything you know about music theory can and should be applied to any instrument you choose to learn. In addition, your grasp of approach will help you to pick up numerous concepts on your instrument that would take the ordinary novice years to learn or master.
Once you have a rough understanding of how your new instrument works, it should be very straightforward to use what you’ve learned on another device to begin working out fundamental scales, chords, or arpeggios on your new instrument. Once you’ve mastered them, it shouldn’t be too difficult to start picking out tunes or sections of songs that you’ve learnt on your other instrument. Again, beginning slowly is vital, but if you have a music theory foundation to fall back on, your progress on a new instrument will be greatly accelerated.
You’ll also discover that going through this procedure strengthens your theoretical understanding. You depend on theoretical knowledge since you have no (or limited) technical familiarity with the instrument. This will rapidly reveal where your knowledge is lacking and will assist you in strengthening that knowledge.
Join a team
One of the quickest methods to improve your skill is playing with others. Once you began performing in bands, you presumably discovered this. So, after practising your secondary instrument for a while, the next step is to look for an ensemble to join.
If you discover a welcoming group of musicians, it may be exhilarating to try out for a band, even if you are still developing your skills on your new instrument. You might even enlist the help of your pals! Get together once a week and perform music, but no one can play their main instrument. I’ve done this before, and it was a great time and a way to become better at playing any secondary instrument you were practising.
Or, you may investigate the music programmes offered by regional institutions. It’s common for schools to provide not just classes but also “band” style performance activities. These won’t come cheap, but they’ll offer a friendly, encouraging space for you to develop as a musician and share your music with others.
It’s quite obvious but worth reiterating, nevertheless. The most effective way to learn an instrument is through a qualified instructor. It’s far easier to prevent developing harmful habits in the first place with the help of a mentor who can teach you the ropes and point out any potential pitfalls. If you know someone who already plays the instrument you want to learn, you may offer to swap lessons with them; in return for teaching them your main instrument, your buddy would teach you how to play the device you want to learn. It’s possible, and it’s worthwhile trying.