New Year’s Resolutions. We all have one, usually. Aside from trying to unsubscribe to all the rubbish that comes through on my email (yes that really is mine), I was wondering what everyone else would be pursuing as a resolution. Even better than that, what would be someone’s musical resolution? So naturally, I asked you, dear flock, anonymously what were your musical resolutions for this year. Here are some of the responses:
“Practice my violin more; I’ve taken it with me to University with me but have barely touched it. I must practice it more.”
“My overall aim is to continue learning pieces for the piano from the romantic period.
1. To complete and perfect all three movements of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata.
2. To work on memorising Chopin’s Nocturne.
3. To begin prerequisite exercises for learning to play difficult extracts from Franz Liszt.
4. To develop ideas for a composition based upon romantic period music.”
“To ensure that I practice at least 30 minutes a day, as some days I simply don’t have the time so my music-practicing resolution is to make time to practice, and also to ensure I do finger exercises before jumping straight into practicing a piece.
As far as listening to music goes, I want to listen to a much wider variety of music, from folk to pop, classic to rap! I am also aiming to improve my knowledge of music and music history, learning about well-known and important musicians and composers, both past and present.”
“This year I’m looking to make myself a proper decent vinyl collection. Last year I started collecting vinyl records of my favourite artists and albums, and I really got addicted to buying records, despite my bank balance looking pretty bleak at times! I don’t know what got me hooked on vinyl, I think it was the artwork mostly, I find you can really appreciate artwork on albums when it’s bigger! Anyway, my New Year’s musical resolution would be to expand my vinyl collection, finances depending!”
“Learn how to read sheet music, pick up an instrument–most likely guitar, actually be able to understand musical counts and be capable of harmonizing with someone off the top of my head.”
“Find a piano in France so I can keep on practicing, and try to get back into practicing the violin.”
“Write and record more original music.”
“I’m thinking of learning how to read music properly this year, instead of just following it on the basis of the anagrams FACE on the treble and ACEG on the bass. I’ve just started to learn the tin whistle and by extension a Welsh woodwind instrument called the Pibgorn, which has the same notation fingering as the whistle; to play both of these properly it seems I need to learn music as it’s the easiest way to access a large portion of the different songs that can be played.
I’m also continuing to learn the banjo, which I started in May last year. I’m looking at a few different playing styles and I’m constantly discovering more all the time. I never realised how diverse an instrument the Banjo could be! But to keep some kind of focus I’m looking at two styles: Frailing or Clawhammer Banjo-style, and Three Finger Picking style; I’ve also been thinking about looking at Irish triplet playing style which involves a lot of trilled plucks with a guitar plectrum.
On top of these I’m trying to listen to a lot more folk music from America, Britain, and Ireland as a basis for the kind of music I could learn to play on these instruments. Every little bit of listening helps to understand the styles and techniques of the genres.
Aside from this, I’m also trying to listen to more Jazz music as I’ve always thought that it would be something I might enjoy. I haven’t listened to much yet, but I’ve been looking at some artists like Louie Armstrong, Chet Baker, and Ella Fitzgerald.
Lastly I think I’m going to try and be more accepting and open to discovering all different kinds of music, as I’d like to be more varied in my tastes.”
“Do more with less.”
“With regard to following solo artists/bands I can’t say that I have specific musical resolutions except to listen to the music that takes my fancy! The reason for this is that music doesn’t play a huge role in my life, I enjoy listening to music, however I don’t feel that I need music to motivate, relax or inspire me. I would prefer to read a book for those.
I would however like to pursue the acoustic guitar, having had one sitting in my room, un-played, for the last six months! Also, I wouldn’t mind becoming part of a choir, having missed being part of one since leaving school.”
“Go to at least one big Artist concert. Play more Indian music and finish composing a song.”
“Take more musical risks, in singing and performing, and in choosing what to listen to, too!”
It’s easy to think that we need start something new and different or alter something about ourselves because it’s a new year, but let’s not forget this can be done at any time. We shouldn’t be restricted to this turning point in the year. If you have a musical resolution, even if it comes as an epiphany in the middle of August, you should pursue it. You’ll be more than welcome to share it with the rest of the flock!