Many of us shy away from recording ourselves because we are afraid of all the mistakes we might hear. Somehow it has been drilled into us that a ‘mistake’ is the biggest blunder we can possibly make when performing classical music. And yet, if we really thought that through to its logical conclusion we would realise that it is a well nigh impossible task! There are many factors in a performance to distract us from the task at hand. The trick is not to let them railroad us into making a complete hash up!
One of the best ways of improving your playing is to record yourself. Yes, I know, you feel sure you might not like what you hear! But what if, instead of looking only at the faults, you looked at the successes of your playing? Awesome, you got that run you have been practising for the last month! Or, those last few bars were so expressive! Or, wow, you didn’t realise you sounded so good, with only a few little scratchy bits here and there!
Dr. Noa Kageyama writes a superb blog called, The Bulletproof Musician. Check out his latest post here where he talks about how to use a recording of yourself to make positive changes to your playing.
Go on…..make a recording of yourself! I dare you!
Daniel Johns is an Australian vocalist, composer, guitarist, and pianist. He is probably best known as the frontman for the band Silverchair which has won 21 ARIA awards to date. He is also three times winner of APRA‘s songwriter of the year. In collaboration with the Australian Chamber Orchestra and Qantas, he has arranged, performed and recorded this beautiful piece entitled “Atlas”. The piece will feature as the soundtrack in the new Qantas advertising campaign on Sunday 22nd July. In composing it, Daniel said he wanted to create something that sounded international, because Qantas is representing Australia and he wanted it to sound big – not just a jingle. Do you think he has succeeded?
One other thing for all the violin and viola players: notice how the bows of the violins and violas are all played in the same direction. It looks so much better than bows going in all directions, doesn’t it!