A metronome is a tool that can enhance your music lessons by providing the best tempo for the piece you are playing. It creates a steady sound that enables a musician to keep the proper pace for playing a piece of music. Practicing with a metronome on a regular basis can improve your playing mastery by helping you maintain speed.
Choosing Your Metronome
There are several types of metronomes available, from digital or wind-up models to apps on your phone. Mechanical wind-up metronomes are typically best for musicians who play classical instruments. Digital metronomes offer more features and are generally best for musicians playing more modern pieces of music. Younger musicians may do better with mechanical metronomes as watching the pendulum swing provides a visual cue to the rhythm.
Setting Your Metronome
Once you have decided on the best metronome for your situation, you will need to know how to set it for each piece you are playing. Many digital metronomes offer a "beats per minute" feature for determining the tempo. Select the BPM needed for each piece. On these devices, you will also need to set the volume level. The level should be loud enough to hear but not so loud as to overpower the piece you playing.
Using Your Metronome
Become familiar with the sheet music you are using before start your metronome. Then practice your piece without paying too much attention to the tempo. When you know all of the notes, you can start to focus more on the proper rhythm of the music.
Begin slowly, listening to several beats of your metronome before you start to play. Focus on the areas in your piece that are problematic for you. Every piece of music typically has easier sections and more difficult areas. You may need to practice the more difficult sections of the music first before bringing everything up to tempo.
When you are comfortable with the entire piece, increase the tempo just a bit. It can help to tap your toe to the beat of the metronome. Play through the whole piece until you have mastered that speed. Increase the speed once more, and play until you are comfortable again. Continue this process until you can play the entire piece at the appropriate tempo.
Why is it Important to Practice with a Metronome?
Humans don't naturally keep a constant tempo. Even our heartbeats speed up and slow down. When someone plays a piece of music without a metronome, they will often speed up or slow down slightly and then try to compensate for the changes in tempo. A metronome reduces this tendency to rush or drag. Keeping a constant tempo is particularly important when musicians are playing together. If everyone is playing at their own pace, the group as a whole will be out of time with each other.
Contact Matt Burk Music Studio to schedule your music lessons in the Allen TX area. Call (469) 353-6100 today!
Music Lessons Allen TX
Matt Burk Music Studio
1701 Legacy Drive, Ste. 150
Frisco, TX 75034