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5 Tips for More Productive Band Practice

Someone very smart once said “Consistency Breeds Results” so if it’s a productive band practice you’re after it is essential to maintain consistency. Band practice sessions are where the whole group gets together to brainstorm ideas, practice tunes, and write new songs. Most bands have their schedule for practice down, but the real question is – what makes a practice successful? Maybe a more appropriate question would have been how to increase productivity while practicing? Here are 5 tips for a more productive band practice:

Be On Time

There is perhaps no greater asset in life than time, and to be respectful and productive it is important that you arrive on time for your band practice. If one member is late, everyone else might have to wait and it may lead to a bad start where you’re pissed off at your drummer…again. Things to keep you on tack include shared calendars like Teamweek, Google Calendars, Sunrise or even Slack to schedule timings in advance to make sure there is no confusion and everyone is on time.

Be Distraction Free

Even more important than being on time is that you put away your phone, and remain distraction free. We humans, and sometimes especially musicians can have a short attention span. Unless it’s an emergency, try to stay off your phone and avoid other distractions for the benefit of the practice and in the interest of being respectful of everyone’s time. It is important to stay away from distractions if you want your creative juices to flow naturally.

Take Breaks and Communicate

Pomodoro technique is something that is beyond the scope of this article, but in essence it is a system where you take a short power break of 15 minutes after every 45 minutes work session. You can do something similar with your band practice session. Breaks are important to relax and give your mind sometime to think and clear itself.

It will also allow you to communicate with other band members and clear doubts, discuss the music, and improve upon communication. It is important that all the members of the band are communicating and participating in the discussions. Make sure no one is left out and everyone gets an opportunity to speak freely.

Goals

Are you planning a show soon? What’s the set-list? Run that, again, and again… Maybe you’re planning a new EP. I know, I know, you have enough goals in your life already, but you still need to outline your goals clearly before you start off. Once you have listed your goals clearly, you need to write down actionable steps that will help you achieve these goals. This will help you stay focused and on track. Visualizing your goals will motivate you like nothing else and increase your productivity like anything. Practicing without goals is like walking without direction and we all know how dangerous that can be.

Record Everything

Make it a habit and record every practice session, and not just the playing, also record you and your band mates discussing the songs. This will be helpful for reference later. Listen to it when you are driving to your office and back home, or whenever you get free time. This will help you critically analyze yourself. The same is also true for your band members.

Mirror, Mirror on the wall:

Practicing in front of a mirror will help you rectify your posture when you are practicing/performing. Correct your posture, see what you are wearing and how it looks on you, try different expressions and movements and ask other band members to do the same. It is a healthy practice to be your own teacher and this technique works best when you have someone with you to share feedback.

 

This post is written By John Morabito. John is a Guitarist, former member of Boston’s The Perrennials and a writer for Rivinton Music Rehearsal Studios, an hourly rehearsal space in NYC. He also produces house music under the name Dark & Stormy, racking up over 12 releases in the last 4 years. A musician of over 15 years, John loves sharing his knowledge and tips for bussing musicians looking for a taste of musical success.

 

About Stephen Vicino

Stephen Vicino is the founder of MusicExistence.com. He created this site to give talented musicians a voice and a way to be discovered.

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