How To Make Your Rehearsals More Efficient

How To Make Your Rehearsals More Efficient

From my experience, rehearsals are the best way artists can practice their craft. Every guitarist knows you’re supposed to practice at least one hour a day, but that almost never happens. There’s always something else that pops up and making a commitment to practicing daily can be challenging. A rehearsal with your group could potentially be your only effective place to practice because not only is it in an environment with your friends, but it doesn’t seem like a chore or like something that you are forced to do.

We all have probably experienced a time when we just can’t get “into it” when it comes to practicing your instrument. You lose enjoyment and eventually your guitar, drums or bass will end up in the corner of your room, never to be touched again. Rehearsals are a good alternative because they can bring fun back into playing and make it much less monotonous – you can explore your instrument in a more enjoyable environment.

There are other things that you can do to make better use of your time during the rehearsal too. For example, try to listen to the songs prior to rehearsal so that you at least know the structure and you don’t feel like you’re “winging it” as much. An even better technique is to write down the structure as in:

Intro, Verse, Pre-Chorus, Chorus (x2), etc…

This will make it easier to remember. You can also write down some rough root chords that are being played, for example:

Intro (A, E), Verse (A, E, G), etc…

If every member of your group is familiarized with the songs beforehand, it will make the rehearsal go by a lot faster and it will more efficient.

One other good skill to try out is dividing up your time three ways: setup/tear-down time, rehearsal time, and management/business talk. The first one is obvious; you need to give yourself extra time to set your stuff up and to set it down just so that you can be as relaxed as possible. There’s nothing worse than rushing in and out with gear, it’s physically draining and…it sucks! Your rehearsal time is the time dedicated to playing the songs out full band. The business devoted time is the time usually at the end of your rehearsal that you can spend talking about your goals as a group, what’s the next step, and talk about upcoming gigs. It also helps you stay organized and professional.

A good way to make your rehearsal time even more efficient is to make sure you have proper working gear! No one wants to waste their time while you realize that a patch cord is broken or your tubes are blown. It will make everyone’s experience stressful and it will affect the overall productivity. I  routinely check my rigs to make sure they’re still working smoothly.

Most importantly, have fun! Having better rehearsals will help you feel more confident with your instrument and you’ll walk away feeling like you accomplished something, in a creative sense.

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