October 17, 2012

Holidays are coming

It’s that time again – the holidays are coming and whether you’re working or entertaining or playing in church, it is likely that you will be called upon to provide some music.  So, what are you going to do?

You could pretend like it won’t happen and wait until someone asks you to play – then you can panic and feel unprepared. OR you could start preparing now so that when the holidays come around you’re ready, unstressed, and confident.  I don’t know about you, btu the second one sounds like the better idea.

Most people panic because everyone knows the holiday tunes and will know if you make a mistake.  There are a couple of ways around this –

1.       Use a fake book (or play by ear) so you are not glued to the page and can relax while you’re playing.

2.       Play Christmas tunes people are not as familiar with – start with the one you’ve never heard and move (which are likely to form a small group) and then move on to the ones you only hear very infrequently if at all on the radio.  This is also a good plan to assure that your listeners aren’t tired of the tune before you even start to play
3.       Keep up the rest of your repertoire.  Rather than interspersing “regular” music into your holiday tunes, think of sprinkling your holidays music into your regular repertoire.  Even the happiest elf (and those strong employees at the shops!) can take only so much Christmas music.  This really reduces the burden on your learning.

4.       Enjoy yourself – it’s the holidays (well it will be as soon as your work these tunes up!) so have some fun while you’re out there!

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