I love gigging! To perform live in front of an appreciative crowd with my band mates is where I feel most at home. Whether it be at a rock concert or an intimate wedding, it’s what I was born to do. As a teacher I actively encourage students to seek other, like-minded musicians at their level to start performing amongst a group with the pressures and stresses of a live performance. The benefits of performing as a growing musician are endless including a better musical awareness and getting used to those pre-match nerves. Musicians come to appreciate and understand what it takes to play other instruments too as they rehearse with a varied arrangement of instruments. This, intern, develops songwriting too as they come to understand an instruments limitations regarding timbre and note range.
I started performing at a young age at school with some performances best left forgotten. But, as I developed a love for the guitar so did the urge to play more and more live. Yeah, sure it was nerve-racking when I first sat in front of the kids and parents of the whole school year I was in at the time. And sure, I may have almost fell off my seat but half way through the first verse I forgot where I was and I was casually jogging through the song I had rehearsed for months. Now I have been playing for 19 years or so (is it really that long… ehem… OLD!) Performing is a breeze whether it be a concert full of paying fans, supporting a mega band, or playing a happy couple down the isle.
My advice to any guitarist is to put yourself out there for all to see, mistakes and all. It’s great to record a video for youtube a million times over to get it perfect but nowhere near as satisfying as doing it live where you can get instant audience feedback. In this day and age it’s becoming easier and easier to do with the emergence of “going live” on Facebook and other such functions on social medias. I don’t believe in spending all that time and effort to become good at something to not show the world. Show yourself off you “never to leave the bedroom player”… Oh and do it live!