New Year’s resolutions can be a tricky task to fulfill. Set goals with too high an aspiration, that you will most likely never accomplish, and you feel like a failure. Set goals with too low aspirations, like “practice less”, and you’ve kind of missed the point of a New Year’s resolution.
For all types of goal-setting, make sure to set a challenge for yourself, with attainable steps. Here are 10 goals for the new year that we think will help you grow as a brass player.
1. Take a lesson with at least three new teachers.
2.Visit a convention that focuses on your instrument this year, or attend a clinic or master class with other musicians who play your instrument.
3. Add two notes to the top or bottom of your range, and maintain your ability to play those notes the whole year.
4. If you play jazz primarily, find a classical étude book and learn every étude this year. If you play classical primarily, get a favorite jazz album, and transcribe at least four solos this year. You know your abilities best, so choose étude books and solos wisely.
5. Drink more water. Busy schedules make staying hydrated difficult, and this has a huge effect on your playing. Set a daily water goal for yourself.
6. Find a warm-up that prepares you for all you’re playing, and commit to using it every day. You may switch some exercises in and out of your warm up during the year, but commit to a good warm up every day. Even 10 minutes will help immensely.
7. Play a solo for an audience at least four times this year. This could be a recital that you are planning, volunteer for a studio class performance, or start utilizing social media, and give a performance online.
8. Utilize social media. There are countless artists and educators on YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram, that provide a lot of support and good advice for free. Find 3 to 4 and follow them. Be careful, because not all advice is good, So try to verify the quality of musician you decide to follow.
9. Find 3 breathing/stretching exercises and do them every day to support consistent healthy breathing in your performance. You can look for these by researching yoga exercises, find a fitness class that is specifically for stretching, or research what other musicians have researched and written about this subject.
10. In honor of Denis Wick’s 50th Anniversary, try out some new Denis Wick mouthpieces and mutes! Expanding your knowledge of equipment will give you a better chance of knowing what the right tool is for that new job that pops up in 2018.
Happy New Year from all of us at Denis Wick Products!