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Marlene Hutchinson's Blog (136)

Thursday "tip"

Use a music stand to hold your music.  When you have your music positioned lower than eye level you are actually causing a bit of strain to your neck and by simply using a music stand or a tabletop book stand to keep your music at eye level will help your neck to feel great while you're playing ~ so, heads up and eyes on the music!
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Marlene
 
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on September 18, 2014 at 12:28pm — 1 Comment

Thursday "tip"

Consider guitar ergonomics when playing. Your posture and movement is important and sometimes overlooked, for instance you should sit upright with your spine and head aligned, think of an imaginary thread pulling from the top of your skull, to avoid sore shoulders and neck ~ ergo, sit up so you can rock your songs and your body!

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Marlene

Marlene's Music

www.marlenesmusic.com

As Seen On PBS, CBS, NBC,…

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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on September 11, 2014 at 1:34pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Play your music frequently to increase your coordination.  Playing an instrument requires hand-eye coordination, for instance when you read chords or notes your brain has to convert that into a motor pattern, sending signals to the muscles to play that chord or note, while also adding in breathing (with your singing) and rhythm ~ so go ahead and get coordinated!
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Marlene
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on September 4, 2014 at 8:05am — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Learn about the different woods used to make guitars.  Various woods are used, some in combination, for acoustic guitar construction because of the variety of sounds each wood produces, for example Mahogany resonates deeper tones, while Maple emits a bright sound ~ "test drive" the woods at your local guitar store to find your favorite tone!
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Marlene
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on August 28, 2014 at 1:57pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Get musically inspired by attending a concert.  Whether it's your all time favorite artist/group or just simply music you enjoy hearing, you will likely get inspired to play songs you hear and it's especially fun to look for their songs online immediately after the show so you can play them right away ~ you'll feel like a rock star!
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Marlene
 


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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on August 21, 2014 at 2:57pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Shop for your dream guitar.  By going to guitar shops and trying out, a.k.a. "test driving", various brands and styles of guitars you will likely find the guitar of your dreams and then here's a thought ~ you might want to reward yourself with your dream guitar when you have achieved a goal (guitar or otherwise)!
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Marlene
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on August 14, 2014 at 5:14pm — No Comments

THursday "tip"

Find a guitar buddy to play with.  It's fun and motivating to have another guitarist to play with, you'll probably find that you'll be playing a lot more and perhaps trying new things that they have learned ~ guitar buddies make such great friends!
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Marlene
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Marlene's Music
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on August 7, 2014 at 9:56am — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Play your guitar to increase brain activity and happiness. Studies have shown that the brain's reward center responds to music -- a brain structure called the striatum releases the chemical dopamine, which is associated with happiness and pleasure ~ so play your guitar and get happy, a.k.a. Guitar Therapy!

Play on...

Marlene





Marlene's Music

www.marlenesmusic.com

As Seen On PBS, CBS, NBC, AcousticGuitar.com

2014… Continue

Added by Marlene Hutchinson on July 31, 2014 at 12:30pm — 3 Comments

Thursday "tip"

Keep your guitar cool and comfortable! With the summer tempuratures soaring you want to be sure that your guitar is happy and here's a good rule: your guitar should not be exposed to climate conditions that you would not want to be exposed to, ideally 40 - 45% humidity and 65-75 °F ~ a cool guitar is cool!



Play on...

Marlene



Marlene's Music

www.marlenesmusic.com

As Seen On PBS, CBS, NBC, AcousticGuitar.com

2014… Continue

Added by Marlene Hutchinson on July 24, 2014 at 11:25am — 2 Comments

Thursday "tip"

Take your guitar with you on your Summer travels. One of the coolest things about playing guitar is that you can take your guitar with you everywhere and play in some of the most amazing locations ~ for instance I'm in Santa Barbara and I just played my guitar at the beach!
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Marlene

Marlene's Music
www.marlenesmusic.com
As Seen On PBS, CBS, NBC
Nominated for 2014 Player's Choice Awards

Added by Marlene Hutchinson on July 17, 2014 at 12:04pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Play a song as many different ways as possible.  Try it with several different strumming patterns (i.e. basic strum, calypso, reggae, etc.), then try it with picking patterns (i.e. basic patterns, Travis picking, etc.), then use a flatpick and then try playing at different tempos ~ let your creative juices flow and you'll find there's more than 1 way to play a song!
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Marlene


 
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on July 10, 2014 at 12:10pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

FInd and perform at a local open mic.  Playing at an open mic event can be a great way to improve your ability to perform in front of others and though it may seem a little intimidating, the audience (other guitarists) is usually super supportive of anything you play ~ so search out your nearest open mic and make it happen!
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Marlene
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on July 3, 2014 at 10:19am — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Use the internet as a tutorial resource.  Learning from others is a great way to increase your skills, but it's not always convenient to find someone, so use sites like YouTube and Acoustic Guitar magazine to view video tutorials ~ we've got some pretty cool resources at our fingertips - literally!
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Marlene
 
P.S.  I'm on Acoustic Guitar Magazine's website!  Check out the interview I did with Mark Kemp, Editor of Acoustic Guitar…
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on June 26, 2014 at 4:48pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Play with other guitarists whenever possible.  Every guitar player has their own skill set and playing style, along with a repetoire of songs that may inspire you, so learn, inspire each other and have fun ~ guitar playing brings the best people together!
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Marlene

Marlene's Music
As Seen On PBS, CBS & NBC
 

Added by Marlene Hutchinson on June 19, 2014 at 5:59pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Go to local guitar shop events. Local guitar shops frequently host guitar events like manufacturers showcasing their latest models and artists demonstrating guitars ~ you'll learn a lot about guitars and guitar playing ~ a win-win!
Play on...
Marlene

Marlene's Music
www.marlenesmusic.com
As Seen On PBS, CBS, NBC

Added by Marlene Hutchinson on June 12, 2014 at 10:36pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Be a prepared guitarist ~ a.k.a. what's in your case?  To be ready for any playing need you should have the following in your case at all times; a set of strings (it's like the spare tire to your car), tuner, capo, nail trimmers and cloth ~ being ready for any guitar need or challenge means you won't have to fret (ha, ha) about anything!
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Marlene
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on June 5, 2014 at 11:56am — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Try different volumes of sound within a song.  For instance play your song in it's normal manner and when you come to a pivotal part play louder (a.k.a. crescendo), then bring it back down (a.k.a. decrescendo) ~ it's a great way to add expression and feelings to your music!
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Marlene
Marlene's Music
As Seen On PBS, CBS & NBC

Added by Marlene Hutchinson on May 29, 2014 at 2:38pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Clean your strings after each playing session.  We have natural oils on our fingertips that build up on the strings as we play, so to get rid of the build up and extend the life of your strings use a soft cloth and wipe down the strings of your guitar each time you play ~ make it your post playing routine!
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Marlene
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on May 22, 2014 at 8:27am — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Find creative ways to fit practice time into your day.  Finding practice time each day can be a challenge, so get creative, for example play guitar while chatting with your spouse or include your children in your playing time or have a guitar at your office in case you have "down time" ~ soon you'll find you've mutli-tasked your way to great songs!
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Marlene
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on May 15, 2014 at 7:03pm — No Comments

Thursday "tip"

Change your strings about every 6 months.  Spring is a great time to change out your old strings and an easy way to remember (i.e. Spring cleaning), best of all you'll love the vibrancy of your songs with the new strings ~ so out with the old and in with the new!
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Marlene
 
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Added by Marlene Hutchinson on May 8, 2014 at 10:51am — No Comments

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