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Practice Tip: FOCUS

Do you ever feel that you have so much to practice you don't even know where to start?  I do!! Trying to practice a little bit of everything is not only overwhelming, but also not very productive.  Here's what I do.


I remind myself that there is more music than I have time.  By the way, this is a good thing.  It's the reason I am enjoying playing the guitar more today than when I first started.  There is alway something new and fun to learn.  My list of songs, styles, and artist that I want to study is long.  I will never get bored playing the guitar!Pick something to get good at.  In other words, FOCUS.  Pick anything.  Make sure its something small and manageable - like a single measure of music.  Practice that measure slowly and with a metronome and play it over and over.  I don't know how many times you will need to play it, but I do know you will eventually get it.Here's the great thing about practicing this way, you will feel like a better player when you are…

A Better Way to Blog

As you can see, its been awhile since my last blog.  As I have been teaching more and more classes it is becoming evident to me that using this blog for class updates and practice lists is not an effective way to use this blog.  So, here's the plan.  If you are in one of my group classes, you will be on an email list for that class.  Whenever there is something to update about your specific class, you will receive that in an email.  That way you will receive information that is relevant to you and your class.

Now, what about this blog?  Here I will blog information that is relevant to all my classes and private students.  I would also like to get ideas from you.  What would you like for me to write about?  Please feel free to comment.

Santa Clara Weekly

Check out the article written about The Guitarist in the Santa Clara Weekly.

http://www.santaclaraweekly.com/1592.html

Practice Tips

Here are a few PRACTICE TIPS that I have posted at the studio:


Aim to practice at least 30 minutes 5 to 6 days a week.

Accomplish something every practice session.

Use a metronome and challenge yourself to play each piece at the proper tempo.

Do not sacrifice quality for speed.

Inch by inch it's a cinch (work on small sections of music).

TV time is great practice time (work on bar chords, scales, etc).

Don't be hard on yourself (practice makes better - nobody is perfect).

Trying it one time is not practice. Play it 100 times.

Show up for lessons and classes.

Barre Chord Tips

As promised in class, here are a few tips on how to play barre chords:

First, and probably the most important tip, accept that holding a Barre Chords will be a challenge. With consistent practice, though, you will learn how to play Barre Chords! I've seen many, many students conquer the Barre Chord.  Hang in there!
Make sure your thumb is low and pressing low against the back of the neck.Your first finger should be somewhat parallel to the fret.Experiment. Everyone's first finger is a little different. Maybe you need to move your first finger up or down a little. Maybe you need to roll it a little towards the head of the guitar.Be sure you are playing on the very tips of your other fingers (non-barre chord fingers). Don't press too hard! It's possible that your guitar may need to be "set-up." Let me see your guitar and I will be happy to give you my opinion. Keep in mind that your progress will be gradual. If you can hear four out of six notes, cele…