Posted by pcfive on Sunday, July 25, 2010
I usually have time to record myself on weekends. Yesterday morning I was discouraged because my recordings were so much worse than I expected. That's usually how I feel when I record myself after a week of not recording. I continued recording yesterday and today, and managed to fix some bugs in my playing. By the end of today I felt like I reached a new level.
Somehow I managed to stop thinking about each and every note. Instead, there are whole batches of notes that the right hand plays without my consciousness being involved. I still think about the melody notes, but not so much about the filler notes. So the melody gets emphasized, as it should, and the filler just flies by.
I think that's how it's supposed to be, as far as I know. The recordings sounded much better after I started doing this. And the increase in speed was sudden and dramatic.
My practice during the week is mostly mindless repetition, working on muscle memory, timing and tone. I don't usually record myself until the weekend. I think that's ok, because too much analysis would not be helpful.
But recording and listening carefully and analyzing is really a good idea, it seems to me.
When I started recording yesterday I felt like I'm getting nowhere and can't ever be any good. That was depressing. By the end of today I was flying high.
Sorry the weekend is over so fast.
I live in a small town, which also happens to be where my favorite jam session is located. I went shopping today and someone who was in the audience last week said something really nice about my playing. I forget exactly what. And that was before the light bulbs that went on this weekend.
So it's a hard process but rewarding as long as you get past those discouraging moments. And just when you need that bit of encouragement, it seems to come along just in time.
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'Sweet Georgia Brown' 3 hrs
'Milk in "bags" ... ???' 4 hrs
'Time to leave BHO.' 5 hrs