How do you practice for a session? Do you learn full tune sets or one tune at a time? Do you practice scales so it sounds good or do you just learn the gist of the tune? Though people have different ways of practicing. Here are some suggestions on how to prepare for a session?
- Find a session. I know that sounds obvious but its always good to visit the session you want to attend and just listen. Find out what the core tunes are and what the tempo is to get a feel for where you’re music will fit in.
- Record. Ask the session leader if it would be okay to record the session. This is a great way to learn new tunes and really get a sense of what the session is all about. And feel free to ask players for the names of tunes. I keep a list of the tunes I want to learn in my fiddle case.
- Practice, practice, practice. Since I learn most of my tunes from other recordings, I get into the habit of playing the same tune sets over and over. I suggest mixing it up in your practice session and trying to pull a tune out of your head one after the other. This way you’ll feel confident when its your turn to start a tune.
The more you practice and the more tunes you know the more confident you’ll be in your playing.
Hope that helps. Happy practicing.