Congratulations to Lindsay M., our February 2018 student of the month. She takes guitar lessons and voice lessons at our music school, and was nominated by her teachers Matt and Olivia for her consistent practice, which is yielding great results.
She practices consistently, and it really showed in her performance at the recitals last week. Her performance was solid, and she captivated the whole room with her confidence and her expressiveness. Watch the interview with Lindsay to see what she does to achieve musical success, and learn how you can, too.
Watch the interview or read it below to see how she has earned her musical success.
Jason: Ok, so welcome. I’m very excited to have you here. This is the first time we’ve done such a thing, having a student of the month. And having talked to your teachers, Matt and Olivia, they said you have been putting in tons of hard work and, myself personally, I don’t believe that talent is the thing. Right. It’s the people who put in the work and keep practicing over and over again are the ones who always see success. So this is what I want to learn more about with you today. So, let’s start. Just tell me what are your goals, and what is it you want it to get out of music and lessons?
Lindsay: Yeah, so I’ve been been playing guitar for a long time. I always refer to myself as like a phony guitarist though cause I only took a year of lessons and then sort of self taught myself slash learned a bunch of tabs for popular music for years and years and years. But I never understood how the music actually worked. I wouldn’t say that songwriting is a goal, but just understanding music has always been a goal. I wanted to learn how to play different types of music and I really always wanted to be able to sing and accompany myself and actually understand how that works. And what a good accompaniment is. And yeah, that’s been my goal since
Jason: Do you feel like you have some more of these answers now?
Jason: So, so tell me more about the practice – like what’s your practice routine like and what is it that you’re doing that you feel is making you get the results that you want?
Lindsay: Regularity. I actually wake up about an hour earlier than I need to wake up to play guitar before I work, before I go to work in the morning. I don’t really sing at that time. I don’t think it’s a good time with my neighbors. But I also do like another hour, or hour and a half after work when I don’t have other things I have to do. So just, you know, sort of being on a regular schedule, making it, like tying tying practice to eating breakfast to waking up. It just becomes sort of a reason to get out of bed and something to look forward to every, every day. And actually practicing is the main thing that I do outside of work. I don’t own a TV at home. I really do too much else. So it’s really matters more than entertainment.
Jason: That is great. Yeah, I haven’t had a TV since 1997, so I respect that.
Jason: So, so you do guitar work in the mornings and then when you come home in the evening that’s like guitar and voice? or it is just the voice?
Lindsay: So I’ve like a sort of a playlist on spotify now, which is even more convenient. I think the, the convenience of vocal warm ups. So my teacher has me on the piano, and I do several different exercises in the order that she’s told me to do them in. And so I just run through that, you know, every evening at a normal time for my neighbors, and honestly just having it be so simple, being able to play those exercises from my phone, and practice like that again, on a regular schedule like when I get home from work starting there. And then, and then it sort of goes from practice to fun because then I’m playing songs that I want to play on my guitar, but it already warmed up the guitar in the morning and the voice that night.
Jason: That’s a great approach. Do the work first and then reward yourself afterwards. A lot of times people will try to play instead of practice and they don’t always see a lot of results. So if you’re doing the work first and then rewarding yourself after then that is amazing. So let me ask also with the practice that you’re doing in the evening, you’re doing just voice then just guitar? Or do you do….how do you structure the practice in the evenings?
Lindsay: So I do the warm up for just voice. Then I’ll run through a song that I’m working on by itself, and then I’ll add the guitar. And actually one of the things that I really like to do, especially to like relax after that is to just improvise over. I’m like taking anything from my spotify. I took the improvisation class here and that actually changed the whole way that I think about music and understand it and that’s been like immensely helpful. So that’s become a really important part of my practice too. So just even like learning by doing that I’m also learning by listening to music.
Jason: I have another one more question, maybe not a question. Your performance at the recital I thought was pretty strong. You were confident, you were together. And, I’m sure this is probably due to your practicing. I mean 98 percent of all nerves come from a lack of practice. But, I think there’s something to do with your practice to actually make it even better next time around. And this is what we call interleaved practice. So, the way you’re describing, you’d like to do the voice stuff and then you did the guitar stuff afterwards and that’s good. But it would be great if you did the voice and then the guitar for half the amount of time each and then did the voice and then the guitar again because you actually get more opportunities to retrieve what you’re working on rather than just encoding. And so this sort of practice is always much more effective for performance. And if you could do the voice in the morning to, I’d be even more happy about that.
Lindsay: My neighbors wouldn’t!
Jason: We aren’t here for your neighbors, we are here for you! You’re in greenpoint, is that right?
Lindsay: I’m in Williamsburg.
Jason: OK, they should understand, it’s supposed to be artistic down there. Right? Then they should totally be ok with your singing in the mornings. Well, congratulations. We’re very happy to have you and thank you so much.
Lindsay: Thank you.
Jason: You are most welcome.
Jason: That’s it.
Lindsay: All right.