Dear Guitar Student, Everyday, it seems like another hero is disgraced as their outer success is contradicted by their personal conduct. It’s enough to challenge your faith in humanity. But don’t give up, because having a hero is one of the best ways for you to reach your own personal greatness, as a human or as a guitar player–and because the world needs you to be a role model, too! In this article, I’m going to explain how understanding how social learning works can unlock your potential to learn and grow. I’ll start with how emulating others can show you what to do, and then move on through who to do it with, how to do it, and finally on how you can help others in their own growth–which might just be the why. Find A Path: Success Leaves Clues Performance super-coach Tony Robbins points that one of the best way to achieve a result is to look for somebody who’s already done it, and then do the same thing. He says “success leaves clues!” So, instead of inventing your pat
Vivian Pacheco is a NYC Guitar School alum who played with She’s Lost Control, an all-girl post punk band that was part of our rock band program. Thank you, Vivian, for sharing your story and how NYCGS fit into your path and journey as a musician. We are honored to be a part of every student’s journey to their personal greatness! Congratulations, Vivian! Check out her group, Cowbell Superstar, here, and see her play in her past NYC Guitar School shows:
Dear Guitar Student Parent, Have you ever wanted to do something, but you felt scared of failing? Or have you ever dreaded a difficult task for which you felt inadequate? Me too! We’re grown ups, right? If, after a lifetime of meeting and surmounting challenges, we still sometimes feel anxiety or dread, doesn’t it make sense that our kids do, too? Perhaps they feel stress and overwhelm because of a non-negotiable reality, like a big homework assignment or upcoming test. Other risks are self-inflicted, like going out for the team, playing in a talent show or trying to make a new friend. As a parent of three kids, ages 11, 14 and 17, I’ve heard my kids ask questions like “What if I fail?“, “What if they don’t like me?” and “What if I lose?” You have probably heard some of these questions, too. Maybe, like me, you’ve wondered how best to help your child. Success Is Not A Destinatio
Dear Guitar Student, Science tells us that the brain is changeable. When you practice playing your guitar, you are literally creating new pathways in your neurons, which are cells in your brain. After you’ve practiced, you aren’t the same person you used to be–you are physically different. There are different connections between your neurons than there used to be, and some of those connections are literally thicker and stronger. You just changed your brain! The more you practice with focus, the more you will change your brain. You can literally become a different person in the next 30 minutes by practicing with focus! You will change on a microscopic level–your brain structure will look different. You will change on a physical and observable level–because your brain has changed, your capacities and skills will also change. For example–you will play guitar better! Unfortunately, many people don’t realize that the point of practice is to c
Dear Guitar Student, We all know the saying, “Practice makes perfect.” But knowing that you should practice isn’t the same as consistently and effectively doing so. This happens in any endeavor where you must practice to get better–whether learning guitar, piano, a business skill, or algebra! After the lesson, your teacher says “Now, go home and practice.” But, even though you know you should practice, you get stuck on how exactly to do it–and why. And that is a problem, because a guitar lesson (or piano lesson, Mandarin class, algebra class, etc.) is typically only the initial exposure to and practice of new skills. The REAL LEARNING should place at home, during practice. Isn’t it strange that we don’t spend more time learning to use our practice time effectively? Olympic Practice Habits Since I’m obsessed with practice, I just attended a workshop on championship practice habits taught by Olympic champion La
Dear Guitar Student Parent, The Guardian newspaper recently reported that late night texting, calling and media consumption is associated with poor sleep (duh!) and also “depressed moods and declines in self-esteem and coping ability” for kids and teens. In fact, the mere presence of a screen in a bedroom is associated with poorer sleep and mental health, even when kids report not using it. Yet over 70% of kids and 80% of teens have unrestricted access to their phones at night. That isn’t surprising, because screens are ubiquitous. Kids don’t just use them for games and entertainment–they use them for connecting with friends, doing homework–even as alarm clocks. So, how can we help our kids use screens in a healthy way? In this article, I’ll share with you my incredibly simple method of helping my 11, 14 and 17 year old kids keep screens out of their rooms at night. Even more importantly, I’ll share with you why I think it works! MY INSA
In other insane guitar related news which I did not make up, The Psychology of Music journal reported a study on the effect of a being identified as a guitar player on successfully obtaining numbers. A young man approached 300 young women on the street and asked for their phone number. He held a guitar case for 100 interactions, a gym bag for 100, and nothing at all for 100. Results? The gym bag bagged 9 phone numbers. Nothing got 14 numbers. The winning strategy? The guitar case was correlated with 31 numbers. But of course we think the best reason to play guitar isn’t so that others will love you–it’s because you already love music, and you’ll love the you who is playing music, too! But…we also have to admit that there is something about a person holding a guitar that is just irresistible! So what are you waiting for? Go grab that guitar!
Get Started Now. Music is everywhere. It’s in our homes, streets, offices, technological devices, and much more all across the globe. For many of us, music is crucial–so it’s no surprise that parents are making great efforts to make music a part of their children’s lives. Parents enroll their children in programs ranging from mommy/daddy-and-me music classes to professional lessons, including classes that specialize in vocal performance and/or instrumental training. Although most parents know that music is both a crucial and beneficial art, a great deal are unaware of the many specific life-long benefits that learning an instrument can provide for a child. To list just a few, NYC Guitar School has chosen the TOP 10 benefits of music education for kids: Music Lessons Improve Math Skills: According to several different studies, it has been proven that math skills and instrumental/musical training are parallel. Shocking, right? In fact, the ideology behind this is quite simple: whe