Practice Tip #10: Practice Standing Up

Casey HenryOne of the comments on Murphy's last practice tip hinted at today's post. And, in a way, this is the same tip as #9, only a different aspect of it. It all comes down to practicing how you are going to need to play. If you're going to have to play in a public situation where you are standing up---be it at a jam or at a gig---make sure you have practiced all your songs while standing up! When you stand up the whole angle of the banjo changes; you can't see your hands as well. You need to practice what that feels like.

There was an instrumental, a fiddle tune, one of the bands I used to play with performed. My banjo break was almost all melodic-style, which is not my forte. I practiced it a lot at home, but invariably when I played it on stage it would sound tentative or shaky, even it I didn't make any actual mistakes. For the longest time I couldn't figure out why that was, until one day I realized I always practiced it sitting down, but always played it standing up. After I started practicing it standing up my performance of it improved greatly!