Thursday, May 29, 2008

Thoughts & Observations

So practice lately has been incredibly productive (though I still need to do more) ... I've been working a lot on faster tempos (140 & up) doing chord patterns in the LH w/ different rhythms in the RH. I've also been working on the pentatonic scale, and mapping that out, b/c I'm trying to work on figuring out rock/metal tunes, and knowing the scale will help immensely, since most of it is blues based.

On top of that, I've discovered some physical/kinesthetic things about playing:

Breathing! More Important than anything (well this isn't exactly a new discovery, but I'm progressing w/ it more & more)
Maintaining a C shape with both hands at (almost) all times ... This came into play first w/ the LH from practicing scales & really gripping the string w/ my fingerpads for once (in part from playing on fingertips) ... I noticed that the C shape is just there ... it's the natural progression for it (which I've of course had pointed out to me before) ... I also used to have that/my LH is starting to look feel like it once did, in terms of callouses/relaxedness. Then, w/ my RH, I was trying to work on bowing in the middle of the bow, because I realized that it's a tremendous weak point of mine, and that I always practice bowing at the frog. From there, I started to actually really feel my 3rd and fourth fingers and their connection to the bow and it occurred to me that by maintaining what I'm now calling a C shape, that the bowing was much more fluid & free and could come from the elbow - instead of me arguing w/ my hand. It's nice to be getting to this point...

In general, I need to practice with more intensity (in my sound) & focus at all times, and also with a greater level of precision (I'm just finally starting to get to a point where I'm really focusing on eliminating extraneous noise & being extremely precise w/ articulation & timing & then eventually w/ tonal qualities)

So in general, I need to practice more ... I practiced some quartet stuff & jammed w/ a few people earlier ... it was embarassing how poorly I was playing ... so time to step things up ... I'm making my students keep practice logs, and I'm going to start doing the same, so I can really get on top of myself w/ this...

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