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Title21waysThe Monster Jazz Formula by Chris Punis
File Size5.5 MB
Total Pages60
Document Text Contents
Page 1

21 Great Ways to Become a Monster Jazz Musician by Chris Punis

Copyright © 2008 Chris Punis & Learn Jazz Faster LLC 1

Page 59

21 Great Ways to Become a Monster Jazz Musician by Chris Punis

Copyright © 2008 Chris Punis & Learn Jazz Faster LLC 59

Have good records
I’m not talking about vinyl here (although that’s a good idea too). I’m
talking about a practice journal. Keeping a journal about your
sessions has several benefits. First of all it helps you to track your
progress. Looking back through your journal can help you to realize
how much progress you have actually made. That will keep you
motivated. Second, it’s a great tool to decide what to practice at your
next session. You can reread it and pick up where you left off. This
will add continuity and consistency to your practice sessions. It
doesn’t have to be fancy; just a few notes about your session will be
Fend off interruptions with a stick
The vast majority of people in all walks of life are too generous with
their time. Schedule your practice sessions and stick to them. Don’t
bend your schedule for anyone except in extreme situations. Don’t let
people interrupt you. If you need to keep a big stick next to you to
fend them off, so be it. Just kidding. But make the people around you
understand that you are not to be interrupted during your practicing.
Explain to them the importance of focused practicing and don’t let
them steal your time. Ask them to respect that time.
Push the envelop
Each and everyday you should push forward slightly. Whatever you
accomplished yesterday, you should pick up where you left off and
push a bit farther. If you are in the habit of always learning
something, always getting better in some way, no matter how small,
you will achieve your musical goals. Here are few ideas you can apply
to just about any practice topic to take it farther:
1 Increase the tempo
2 Decrease the tempo
3 Learn it in another key
4 play it with a different time feel
5 Play it in a different meter
6 Add dynamics

Page 60

21 Great Ways to Become a Monster Jazz Musician by Chris Punis

Copyright © 2008 Chris Punis & Learn Jazz Faster LLC 60

7 Learn more of it (another scale, another page, another tune,
another bar, etc)
Under promise/over deliver
Plan your practice sessions so you can finish your routine and plan
the majority of the time. It feels great to accomplish everything you
set out to do and then some. If you’re always leaving things undone
and not getting through your daily plan then your plan is unrealistic.
You’re over promising and under delivering. This will cause you
stress and anxiety. By all means push yourself, but you want to see
yourself hitting your daily goals. This is how you gain mastery and
increase your musical confidence.
Celebrate your victories
When you accomplish a goal, no matter how small, take a moment
and bask in the glory. If you learned a new tune, or finished a
method book pat yourself on the back. You’re moving forward with
your music and you should be proud of yourself.
Play for the spirit of the music
Don’t forget about the whole reason you started playing in the first
place. It’s easy to get caught up practicing and forget to play for fun.
Schedule time into your practice session simply to play, the way you
did when you first started out. No limits, no judging. Just for fun!
Dedicated to Your Musical Success,
Chris Punis
[email protected]

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