A More Interesting Way to Learn New Music

When setting into the task of learning new music, we usually put the sheet music on the stand and continue to bang out the notes until we learn it or start bleeding from the chops.

Next time you are faced with this sometimes boring task, try this approach and see if it works for you.

I have selected this exercise as our example for it is an exercise one of my beloved grandsons needs to learn for his school; but the concept can be applied to any new music you undertake.

Printed sheet music- #102 – Trumpet in Bb
Practice track at 80mm
Practice track at 100mm
Practice track at- 120mm
Practice track at- 140mm

To utilize this example, start the track at the slowest tempo you are able to play perfectly and gradually increase the speed until you have it mastered.

10 Advantages with this method-

1. You are listening to the melodic line at all times.
2. You are resting as much as you play.
3. You are forced to see the notes at all times in order to know when to reenter.
4. You should be able continue practicing indefinatly for you should not tire.
5. You are forced to keep time and be aware of the eighth note beats.
6. When playing with the midi trumpet melody, out of tune notes will be obvious.
7. By playing and resting each measure you are resting will give your brain a short rest which will eventually increase you power of concentration.
8. By constantly viewing so many notes, your sight reading skills will improve.
9. Resetting your embouchure every four measures will improve your embouchures accuracy.
10. It’s more interesting!

Note- If you have problems hearing the click track, just adjust your left and right fader for I recorded the midi trumpet and piano in one channel and the click track in the other.

Also- I’m sure everyone would have chosen better chords, but who cares. It’s only an example! LIVE WITH IT OR TURN IT OFF!

Bruce was a member of the faculty at the University of Northern Iowa, School of Music in Cedar Falls from 1969 until his retirement in 1999. He has performed with many well-known entertainers such as Bob Hope, Jim Nabors, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, Anita Bryant, Carman Cavalara, Victor Borgie, the Four Freshman, Blackstone the Magician, Bobby Vinton and John Davidson.