Great Advice from Musicians for Musicians

How to Be a Good Musician

Musicianship is not something that can be measured. Sure it means you can play your instrument well but in no way means you are a musician. A musician is someone who can not only play, but someone who can understand, write, perform, and feel music. Musicians also can play with other musicians due to their knowledge and ability. A musician must be well-rounded in every aspect of music. They must also have the ability to listen. Playing over someone else or playing the wrong harmony can be catastrophic. Listening cannot be over stated.


  1. Learn music theory.Music theory can change the way you write/play music. It opens up your mind to all the different possibilities and options you have. Music theory is also universal, most musicians should know it. It will make things easier to explain. For example, telling someone to play a C major chord is easier than telling them where to put each finger.
  2. Improve your rhythm.Keeping time is very important whether your playing with other people, or playing by yourself. Having bad rhythm will make the piece of music sound bad even if you are playing the right notes. You don't have to be metronomic, but as long as you can keep a tempo without speeding up or slowing down that's OK.
  3. Play with other people.Playing with other people will force you to stay on time. It will also give you experience and make you more confident in your abilities. And above all playing with other people is a lot more fun then playing by yourself. Joining a band will also be very beneficial.
  4. Learn more than one instrument.This will help broaden your horizons. If a guitar player was to start playing bass guitar, the guitarist would then start to realize the role of bass guitar. So the next time the guitarist has to write a bassline, the guitarist will have a better understanding of how to write a more effective one.
  5. Perform.Performing requires you to know the music that you are playing inside out in the event that something goes wrong. Most performances require you to memorize your pieces. Having a good memory will benefit you because you always know what to play. It will also allow you to have more confidence in your talents and music.
  6. Be expressive.It's one thing to learn the notes and rhythm, but it's another to express the music. This is probably the hardest thing to do, because expression is different for everyone. Try picking a slow song; they tend to have a lot of hidden meaning within the notes. After you get used to slow songs, try faster ones; they're a little harder because you need good speed, timing, and accurate articulation. But remember, too much expression will make you sound a little corny.

Community Q&A

  • Question
    If I join a band, would it help me to perform better?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    It can. You're more likely to practice your instrument and improve your skills if you know that others are counting on you to play well.
  • Question
    How do I improve my songwriting and singing abilities?
    wikiHow Contributor
    Community Answer
    Practice. Listen to other people's songs and determine what you think works and what doesn't. Consider taking singing lessons and signing up for a creative writing/poetry class. But again, practice makes perfect. These things take time.
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  • Record yourself playing and listen to find any mistakes you are unaware you are making
  • Have a main instrument. Though you should know more than one, have one main instrument that is your strongest.
  • Listen carefully to your sound, and analyze notes that don't sound quite right. Most of the time, it's something physical such as bumping into an unwanted key or string as you change notes.
  • Broaden your musical horizons. Listen to music you don't usually listen to. Every genre of music has something special about it that makes it great.
  • Don't forget to put dynamics and "shape" into your music, rather than playing all the notes exactly the same. Try to find the highlights in a phrase of music, building up and easing back off. This is one of the things that gives a piece character.
  • When you are performing on the stage. Feel the music inside let the audience see you enjoy what you do. Don't just go there and stand like a statue follow the rhythm, if it's a sad song let it reflect on your face. Don't be crowd shy just go there and do your thing, carry the audience along show them you are good at what you do.
  • Use a metronome if you are struggling with keeping time.
  • Tap the beat with your foot. For instance, when playing in 4/4 time, keep a quarter-note beat. When playing in 6/8, you might prefer to tap on the 1 and 4 beat (ONE two three FOUR five six).

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Date: 04.12.2018, 11:55 / Views: 73233