Don’t Buy A Shiny New Guitar

This blog is for intermediate musicians who feel they’ve reached a road block in their musicianship and have seen the ads for the pretty new instrument.  The perfect trombone with the extra valve, and beautifully polished.  Or you’ve seen that excellent keyboard with an extra bright digital display with amazing samples that will let you raise or lower the lid of the piano.  How about a shiny new guitar? I know that you’ve had the thought that “…if only I could get that new instrument, it would help me sound so much better.”  Well, I’m here to tell you that, unfortunately, that’s not true.

A Shiny New Guitar

I can tell you that the worst way to sound better as a musician is to go out and spend too much money on an instrument that you don’t need.  As long as your instrument can stay in tune, physically fits you well, functions properly and respond to how loud or soft you play it, then you’re not necessarily in need of a new instrument.  That’s only something that you’re telling yourself to justify getting something new.

Good Music Comes From You

However, the good news is that there is something simple that you can do to make yourself better.  It’s not as easy as finding something new to buy.  But you must remember that the music that you play isn’t really coming out of your instrument.  The music that you’re playing is coming out of you.  The instrument is only a tool that’s allowing the music to sound the way that it sounds.  A relatively easy way that you can improve that music is by listening to artists that you want to sound like.  This is going to expand the library inside your mind.

Transcribe What You Hear

Take this one step further and actually transcribe the music that you’re hearing.  Transcribing means that you write down, in musical notation, what you’re hearing.  If you need help with that, ask your teacher.  He or she can help you write it and find different free online tools to help you write it faster.
So, turn on the radio, Pandora, Spotify or whatever you listen to and expand your real instrument… your mind.

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