So, I’m on sabbatical this semester and really excited that I am getting to dig into several musical endeavors… most significantly, a major recording project and performance tour (tentatively titled manipulations of nature). A month out of the Fall semester, I have finally gotten in to a pretty good practice routine and started thinking that maybe some of my students (…yes, I am still thinking about you) would be interested in having a glimpse into what my music learning process looks like in real-time.
As most of you know, I am totally interested in and committed to the process of learning = the process of life = the process of making art, and the art of critical self-assessment and giving feedback to others. We have all talked about this in some iteration, and I have often given samples of how I organize my time in the practice room, how I set goals for myself (daily, weekly, monthly, yearly), how I track my progress, how I deal with the highs and lows of practicing, among other things. I have always kept a practice journal, and have dozens of notebooks and calendars with my notes dating all the way back to 1998 when I started my undergraduate degree at Capital University, and I have again found myself doing this as I work on learning music for this particular project. It works for me. It has unfailingly gotten me where I need to be for almost 20 years. In any case, my process might not be the thing for you. But there may be something useful (and possibly humorous… because, yes, even I curse at myself in the practice room on rare occasions) for you to take away from it.
So, what I will be doing here for a while is using this space as my practice (b)log. At some point, I will be including sound samples of the music I am working on and asking for your feedback on what you hear. All is fair game… As you know, I ask you to stand up and play music that is only partially prepared in front of me and others and to accept critical feedback on a weekly basis. I want you to test your boundaries and push yourself to provide me critical feedback as I wade through this process.