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Kickstart your guitar playing in 2014

kickstart guitar playing 2013 is slowly fading away. I don’t know about you, but for me it was the shortest year ever. I can clearly remember how I was creating New Year’s resolution for 2013 last December. It seems as if it was yesterday. Every year time flies faster.

Anyway, it was a very good year for me. I have accomplished some great successes in music: target=”_blank”>debut album release, lots of concerts played, many hours spent practicing guitar and creating music and hundreds of hours spent teaching guitar. I cannot be more happy.

But there were also things that didn’t go so well and there are many areas ready for improvement. I will be work in progress forever.

I have lots of ambitious plans for 2014. I’ve been thinking a lot about my past victories and failures, I’ve been deeply studying lessons that life taught me this year. One thing I’ve learned is that I am much more successful with my goals, if I don’t talk about them. Derek Sivers talks about it in target=”_blank”>this video.

So instead of talking, I want to be doing and let my actions talk for me. Everybody can talk, but not everybody is willing to take responsibility for his or her life and do the work. This year I will try to become the doer.

With that said, I have a little challenge for you and also for myself.

Kickstart your guitar playing

Instead of creating magnificent plans for 2014, let’s try something different this year.

I declare January 2014 to be “No-Excuses month”.

No more talking how busy you are or how things can’t be done. Enough is enough, let’s do some work here.

Here is what I want you to do: Continue Reading →

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What is the difference between playing and practicing guitar?

practicing guitar, playing guitar

Maybe it sounds obvious to you, but from my experience, there are many aspiring guitarists who don’t know what is the difference between  playing the guitar and practicing the guitar.

And even if they understand it on a theoretical level, they have hard times applying this knowledge.

Playing and practicing guitar is not the same thing. Following a pre-written guitar practice schedule is something completely different than just noodling around. When you are playing the guitar, your goal is to have fun, entertain people or earn money. When you are practicing guitar, your only goal is to improve some aspect of your playing.

There is a big difference between playing for 3 hours and practicing for 3 hours.

I’ve created a table which sums up some of the most obvious differences between practicing and playing guitar.

When you are in doubt whether you are playing or practicing, just check this table 🙂

Practicing the GuitarPlaying the Guitar
Working on something you don't knowPlaying/performing what you already know
Slow tempos so you can control what you are doingPlaying at the desired tempo
Lots of repetitionsNo repetitions of the same stuff
Thinking "How can I improve this?"Being in the moment, let the mind and fingers do their job
Working on different musical skillsApplying acquired musical skills to perform at your best
Correcting mistakesHidding mistakes
Mentally very demandingUsually lots of fun
Working on your weaknessesShowing off your strenghts
Isolating problem areasPlaying from the beginning to the end
Doesn't sound goodShould sound good and polished
UnfluentFluent
Following practice scheduleNoodling around or following playlist

Is there any other difference that you can think of? Let me know in the comments.

Image courtesy:  Alberto Ferrante

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