How to develop your musical imagination

A person’s creativity in any field is closely linked to their imagination. The more imaginative you are the more interesting and unique ideas you’re likely to come up with. If you want to be a creative musician – whether it’s a prolific songwriter or an impressive performer – then you’ll want to develop your musical…

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Scales: The Things You Ought to Know

A lot of musicians hate scales. They find them boring to practice and they often don’t see the point. The bad news is that if you want to be a great player, scales simply have to be a part of your life because they’re useful for so many things. The great news is that you…

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6 Simple Tips for Effective Practice Technique

6 Simple Tips for Effective Practice Technique We all spend a lot of time in the practice room. If we want to be great players we don’t have much of a choice. But imagine how much of a difference it would make if you improved twice as much in every hour you spent practicing as…

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Intervals: The Things You Ought to Know

When you were in primary school you learned to read and write. A big part of that process involved learning the alphabet, then learning to combine those letters together to create words. Letters are the individual building blocks that we combine to create words. In music the equivalent to letters are intervals. Just like with…

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Solfege vs Scale Degrees: Which is the best ear training system?

A common question from musicians who have just started with Ear Training HQ’s method is “can I use solfege instead of scale degrees?”. And the question is a good one! If you’re familiar with one system the thought of learning a new one can be rather stressful. Fortunately, if you’re comfortable with either scale degrees…

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Solfege: The Things You Ought To Know

A lot of people might best know solfege from the song about it in The Sound of Music (appropriately titled “Do-Re-Mi”). But there’s a lot more to solfege than female deer, drops of golden sun and drinks with jam and bread. Read on to find out the things every musician ought to know about solfege.…

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How to Transpose a Melody Quickly and Easily

Have you ever tried to transpose a melody from one key to another? It can be very challenging. It involves some serious mental gymnastics and you need to be able to do it fast if you want to keep up. Fortunately, if you found it difficult, you were probably doing it the hard way. I…

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What Are Scale Degrees?

Scale degrees are used to describe the different notes of a scale in relation to each other, as well as their function. The first note in a scale is labelled as scale degree 1 and it is called the tonic. Each note that follows in the scale is given the following number: 2, 3, 4…

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3 Reasons Ear Training is Absolutely Essential for Every Jazz Musician

When I was studying to become a jazz musician at university I devoted almost as much time into ear training as I did into practicing my instrument. I did this because I’d convinced myself that ear training was the secret to becoming a truly great jazz musician. And as my ears improved I discovered more…

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What is the tonic in music?

The tonic is the central note in a piece of music. Key centres and scales are both named after their tonics, so a piece in the key of C will have the tonic of C. And C is the tonic of the C major scale. Any tonal piece of music has a tonic chord, which…

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