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A Viable Practice Tool For Guitar Players

Jun 8, 2008
When it comes to practicing your guitar, there are literally thousands of teaching methods available. Basic, logical and effective practice habits are an essential building block for any guitarist. You can't get away from the concept of dedicating a certain amount of time everyday with out any excuses to practice your discipline.

Guitar tools considered standard tools for practicing the guitar, such as a metronome and tuner are indispensable, however there may be ways to improve your skills right under your nose. People can be very imaginative, and come up with some terrific, out of the box practice methods that are quite unique and helpful.

Perhaps it is not unique, but one method I use and really enjoy since it is not as much work as a structured practice session, is to play to the television. The strategy is fun and really develops your ear to find 'tones' and the 'keys' and improve timing issues in a realistic way. We all watch television to some extent. The music used in different types of shows is fun to emulate in terms of how fast you can figure out what 'key' it is in and even the type of 'scale' being used.

Simply put, television commercials and shows use music that is suitable for the medium. Meaning, a suspenseful 'Law and Order' episode may have a lot of tension in the notes played, especially before the 'dicks' find the unfindable clue. Commercials such as the 'Cialis'
( erectile dis-function medicine ) has a great lead-in slide-able chord that is a great 'measure of music' to play with.

Since I mainly watch sporting stuff, I hear certain types of commercials that relate well to sports lovers. Maybe you have seen the car commercials for Nissan and I think Chevrolet too, and even the NFL, they use Stevie Ray Vaughan's "Pride and Joy" as their song. Well, I know this song pretty well, but it is fun, and Stevie Ray is one of my influences. I hear tunes and songs on television shows also that force me into quick 'key' and 'scale' decisions. For the little time I spend in front of the television, I get a lot of real world practice at these two important elements of music mentioned above.

I call it multi-tasking. Watching television and playing the guitar! Try it, but don't forget the logical and effective methods for practicing your guitar that allowed you to play with the television. Now your mom or wife can't say TV is a worthless waste of time! Enjoy.
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