Saturday, February 04, 2017

6 Steps to Becoming a Musical Master

Learning a musical instrument is a wonderful skill to acquire. It allows you to express yourself creatively, perform for family and friends and perhaps, could even lead to the career of your dreams. 

However, learning a musical instrument is also a difficult skill to acquire. When you watch someone like Jimi Hendrix or Elton John on stage performing at such a high level, it can seem as though musical virtuosity is only for superstars. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Anyone can learn how to play a musical instrument if they’re willing to put the hours in, but sometimes some guidance helps too. So, here are the six steps you must follow before you can start cranking out your favourite tracks.


Step 1: Choose your weapon 

It may sound obvious, but before you can master a musical instrument, you first need to own one. Your initial decision will simply be which instrument you want to play, with some of the most common being guitar and piano. If, however, you want to learn something more niche, like the Theremin, then go for it!

Once you’ve made that choice, you’ll then have to decide how to get started. Many instruments offer beginner starter packs with all the additional equipment you need, like replacement strings or cases, so take time to do some research before you make your purchase. 

Step 2: Find some helpful resources 

The internet has a wealth of great resources when it comes to learning an instrument. Hunt down relevant YouTube videos, eBooks on musical theory, useful apps and skype tutorial sessions. If, however, you’d prefer to go down more traditional routes, ask your library for beginner instrument books and see if anyone in your local area is offering face-to-face lessons. 

Step 3: Practise, practise, practise 

There’s a lot of debate, not just in music, as to whether talent really exists or if success is actually achieved through hard work alone. Certainly, it is never achieved without it. It is recommended that you spend at least an hour each day practising, but even if you can’t commit to this, do as much as you can, even if it’s only 5 minutes. 

Step 4: Have a goal 

Having a goal is a great way of focusing your practise. This could be something small, like learning a pentatonic scale or a grander ambition. For the latter, why not aim to create an album? There are outlets like Nationwide, which can help with this, but whatever your goal is, remember to update it every time it is achieved. 

Step 5: Don’t rush 

Learning a musical instrument takes time, so don’t expect to be able to play the complete works of Mozart on day one. Practising slowly, but carefully, is more useful than rushing through your lessons as fast as you can. 

Step 6: Don’t give up 

For every person that picks up a musical instrument for the first time, someone else is probably putting it down in frustration. The only way that you’ll ever master your instrument of choice, however, is to stick at it. So, even when frustration strikes, take a deep breath and start playing once again.

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