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Practising Tips

Practising Tips

A great way to practise a difficult left hand chord change which includes a change in postion (eg from 1st position to 5th) is to separate it into 2 distinct moves. I advise practising each step carefully before moving on to the next one.

  1. Change from the 1st chord shape to the 2nd, staying in the same postion (eg stay in 1st position for both chord shapes). This may sound very strange as the 2nd chord may sound terrible without the change in position (especially if open strings are involved), but it makes you very aware of exactly what each finger needs to do to make the change.
  2. When the change becomes more fluent, change the chord (again in the same position) and then ‘slide’ the fingers into the new postion. This involves 2 steps. Change chords 1st – then slide to the new postion.
  3. When you have tried this a few times it becomes a simple step to rearrange the fingers simultaneously AS you change position on the guitar.

I can guarantee that after a few of days practising this way, the change will become fluent!

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Cheryl Grice

Welcome to the official new website of Cheryl Grice!

After many years of juggling performing and raising a large family of very strong individuals, 2011 saw my return to a full time music career touring with the New Zealand Guitar Quartet. Whilst I thoroughly enjoyed performing with these very talented guitarists, the experience also served to crystalise for me where my heart and my gift truly lay as a musician, which is in being able to express myself spontaneously in the moment, with what I am feeling in my heart and my soul. So I am being true to myself and returning to what I love doing most – my solo music!

This year, whilst organising future tours and recitals for 2013/14 I have forayed into the world of composing for the first time, which I am finding to be an exquisite combination of extreme joy and frustration! Again this becomes an expression of who you are and what you feel, and the joy (and pain) in creating new music has taken me very much by surprise. I look forward to playing some of these pieces for you in future recitals. I hope you enjoy my weekly blogs, and that you find them both interesting and informative.

We all strive to achieve perfection in our playing, and whilst this is of course an important aspiration, remember to always take pleasure in the journey! The essence of Music is in expression – not in technical pyrotechnics. Make sure that you use musical expression and phrasing whenever you play (wrong notes and all)! and don’t ‘just play the notes’ – say something!  Enjoy the journey – don’t wait until the notes are ‘perfect’ before allowing the music to sing.

Cheryl