Drum Sticks and Beginner Tips

One of the most popular instruments among my friends and is in the background of almost every piece of music is the drums.  Even in electronic music you will usually find a drum beat or something with a cymbal in it.  Catching up with Spencer Smith I got to sit at his drum set and get my first lesson from him.  Let me tell you, learning drums in the beginning was a very hard thing to do because I struggle with limb independence.  After I got the basics down though, it was very gratifying and I started to have fun with it.

My First Drum Lesson

Drum Lesson and Tips for Your First Time

Now I was just curious about the drums and never had a burning desire to play the drum set.  It was much easier for me to use someone else’s to see if I would enjoy playing or not.  Drum sets are very expensive and take up a lot of room.  If you aren’t 100 percent sure you want to take home this instrument, find someone locally to see if you fall in love with it. Here is a resource for picking out a drum set: http://musicnuke.com/best-online-drum-lessons-beginners.   If you are shy or want to pony up some dough, go with a second hand drum set or electronic drum set for starters.  This will give you a great deal of satisfaction.

Next thing you want to pick up is some drum sticks with will mostly be labeled with a letter and a number.  This means the type of drum stick you will purchase.  You will find some of these different selections when you go shop: 3S, 2B, 5B, 5A, and 7A.  Spencer recommends that you go to a music store to feel each in your hand because every player has a different preference.  While you are out, try to sit in different drum thrones or seats.  This will be your best friend when you have a long practice session.

Warm Up and Play Some Basic Rudiments

One thing that you have to keep in mind with the drums are that it takes a lot of physical activity.  Make sure to give yourself a good stretch and warm-up before you get into any routines.  Injury isn’t worth it guys.   In the video about I have a guide on how to hold your drum sticks.  There is more to it than just wrapping your hands around them.  Also, you will find that there are more than just one type of grip.  Learn the good habits first before you move on.

When you warm up and to get the hang of the drums, Spencer had me practice with learning a very few rudiments.  You can think of a rudiment like the basic building blocks of drumming.  They are basic drum patterns that you alternate to get use to playing the drum.  Below is a video of some of the most basic rudiments that you learn and over time you can get to more advanced drumming.  So, now that you have a basic overview on how to get started with the drums.  Go have some fun and let us know how much fun you are having.


Easy Singing Lessons for Beginners

I have always wanted to learn how to sing but have always lacked motivation to get started.  I think now is the time to get my voice in better shape.  My reasons may be different from other people.  First, I do not want to be a professional singer and just enjoy music.  I will be mainly learning to sing a long with some of my favorite songs with or without friends.  My last round at karaoke let me know that I needed some help, drunk or not.

beginner singing tips

Singing Better with a Few Easy Steps

The first steps in singing better are simple and easy and why shouldn’t they be?  This shouldn’t be hard and I have noticed these easy steps will help us get to a better level and have helped me.  Before anything else it is important to relax your body.  If you have tense muscles and poor posture, you will ultimately not be able to sing as well as when you have a loose relaxed body.  Your throat and most importantly the larynx needs to be relaxed and warmed up to produce beautiful notes.  This goes for the rest of your body as well.  Your diaphragm should relaxed so it can support the notes that you sing.  It is explained here http://www.snagmusic.com/tips-on-how-to-sing-better and you will find other tips to help you.

How do you feel more relaxed in your own body?  Sit down in a comfortable chair or recliner that you have around the house.  Focus on your breathing while you relax the muscles in your body.  It is great if you meditate before you start your breathing exercises as well.  Now, place your hands on your diaphragm and focus on pushing air into this region and then pushing the air back out.  This is where your air will go while you sing and should feel natural.  If it does not feel natural yet, keep practicing.  Over time while you relax, you will find it to feel more and more natural so keep at it.

Improve Your Voice With Diet Changes

Another way to change your singing results which has been changing my own diet.  This may not seem apparent but what we drink and eat will affect our instrument.  Think about milk and dairy products for example.  When you drink a lot of dairy or eat it, it builds phlegm inside your system which is probably one of the more problematic things.  Other foods to watch out for are sugary drinks.  Sugary drinks will end up drying out your throat and ultimately your voice.  This will have a negative impact on your singing for 24 hours or more depending on how much sugar you consume.

If you enjoy having an adult beverage like beer or wine, save it for after the performance.  This will reduce the amount of gas inside of you which for obvious reasons will be a bad idea.  Wine will have the same impact as sugary drinks and dry out your voice.  Make sure to drink plenty of water and steer clear of these drinks around practice and performance and you will notice a huge difference in your singing.  These tips may seem obvious, but it is the little things that will make the biggest difference when singing.  Take the time to practice during the week and a great music resource for you if you have singing questions is Kevin McClintock.  He has helped with my music development so give him a try.


The Best Things About Watching TV

I heard it for years from my mother…..”TV will rot your brain”!  So far my brain hasn’t melted to my knowledge and I have only seen things that regular aging will do to a person.  We all know what negative things come out of watching too much TV and it is all just common sense.  First if you watch TV all day and do no physical exercise, you will become unhealthy.  Also, watching things that are mostly negative will have a large impact on your mood.  Now that we have that all cleared up, lets focus on some of the good things you can get out of watching TV that will benefit you in your life.

Family Watching TV

Great Things You Can Get Out of Watching Television

One of my favorite things besides watching musicals on TV is the travel channel.  I get that watching exotic places instead of visiting them is not as amazing.  For a person on a limited budget though I get to travel to some of the most beautiful places and learn about different cultures.  I have learned so many different things about different locations based on watching the Travel Channel.  Watching these exotic locations has inspired me to travel outside of the United States to see different areas.  Also, I feel like more of an adventurous person when I watch different locations.

I love some of the series you see on TV and also originals.  This has also inspired my imagination as well as given me hours of entertainment.  Also, other people I work with and know watch the same episodes.  This has been great conversation starters to meet new people.  I was at a Coffee shop and met my current partner talking about one of the current TV series.  There is a lot of passion these series and it gets your involved in what is going on.

Educational Shows and Entertainment

Some may say there is nothing educational on TV these days, but I disagree.  There are more and more educational videos out there than ever and you can learn just about anything.  There is cooking, DIY projects, Fitness, and History.  Not only is it entertaining, I am engaged and that is the most important thing.  Television is here to stay so why not find some programming that you and your family will enjoy.

The best thing about Television is it is changing in so many different ways.  Now if you missed your favorite show, you can stream it later in the day or even back it up.  You do not have to work around the TV’s schedule.  It is so easy to find what you are looking for and we can watch anything we want at any time of the day.  Also, we can find any TV programing online.  The most important thing now is to just figure out what you want to watch because there is not enough time in the day to see all the programming out there.   I would love to hear what your favorite TV series is below.


How Music Creates Magic In Our Lives

Music touches our lives day in and day out.  Most people are walking zombies through life and tune out the music they hear on a regular basis.  Most of this is due to the distracting thoughts that people have on a regular basis.  We have so many things in our life trying to get our attention that it is hard to focus.  When we hear something new though like a piece of music, it can transform a persons life.  Music can be so captivating that it makes music fade away with all of your problems.  It can also inspire you to finish a project that you want to finish or help another person experience the same type of joy.

Music is life

Changing How You Listen to Music

How often do we take the time to stop and just listen to music that we really love.  The best way to listen to music for me is to put a pair of headphones on and close my eyes.  This takes me to places that I have never been before and alters my mood.  Sometimes music makes me feel sad while other times happy.  That is the power of music.  It is transformative and can also heal peoples lives or make drastic changes.

If you are more intentional about having music in your life, you will notice changes.  When I listen to music while I cook it puts me into a more relaxed state.  Going to work, I have to drive through very heavy traffic which can cause anxiety.  When I have really good music on, I do not care.  I just sit back and wait at traffic lights with patience while listening to a new podcast.  How can you add music into your everyday life?

Playing Music or Just Trying Something New

Have you always wanted to learn an instrument or develop your voice?  It isn’t nearly as hard to get started these days with the internet.  There are so many different ways to get information.  There are articles or videos online, podcasts, and also online music lessons.  When I was growing up I didn’t have any of these available to me.  Now is the time to try something new and pursue your music goals.

Another great question to ask yourself is what instrument are you really interested in.  There is so much to choose from on the market today.  You can even make music with just a laptop and a set of headphones.  Take the time to do some research before you get started, it will be worth it.  After you pick an instrument that you want to learn or that you are interested in, set some goals.  You want to make this process fun and interesting.  If you are just gonna set time aside for practice each week, you will end up losing interest.  Make some plans to join a music group or band!  Or you can decide to perform in front of others once you have a few songs down.  Have an accountability partner in all of this so you stick with it.  If you need motivation, please reach out to us.