Future Dilemma.

FunkyJazzer

Senior Member
Hey everyone. A quick question that affects and relates to my future choices in life...

What do you think is more important for growth as a musician in the long-term? Practicing LOADS (like 8 hours a day) and playing with other musicians about 3 nights a week. Or playing with other musicians almost every day and practicing like 2-3 hours a day?

I ask because I'm considering going to music college to study a jazz degree. I have an audition on Monday and am fairly confident. My situation now consists of practicing roughly 6-8 hours a day, and attending some great jam sessions at least twice a week. I was pretty adament about going to study in a college, but I've been hanging out at the college and meeting all the great players there, jamming with the post-grads and everything! I'm concerned because I know for a fact that practicing 6-8 hours a day in college will be impossible, simply because the logistics of sharing practice rooms and drum kits with so many other players won't work. HOWEVER, despite this, I have been told that the amount of jam sessions, great tuition (which I'd get privately anyway) and general musicianship tuition makes up for the lack of practice time.

I just LOVE practicing. I'm still not satisfied with practicing 6 hours a day - I want to do more! I was hoping I could in uni, but it doesn't seem that way. I'm debating whether 4 years at home, with private instruction from the best, and regular jam sessions would be better than studying in a conservetoire...

Lloyd.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
In my opinion, the latter. Networking is equally as important as practicing. If you love to practice that much (good for you!) you will find the time for it. Getting yourself out there is the key, because the time you spend playing with others IS practice. It's practice in relating with the other musicians, something you cannot get locked away woodshedding. You have a great attitude, and that will take you really far.
 

ZootELoops

Senior Member
My situation now consists of practicing roughly 6-8 hours a day, and attending some great jam sessions at least twice a week.
Lloyd.
Geesh! I wish I had a 10th of that time to practice. I work 10 hour days then have family obligations in the evening. If I can sneek away for 20 minutes when the kid is getting a bath, or an hour or two on my day off - I'm feeling lucky. I'd say you get more practice in a DAY than I get all WEEK! And you get to jam with other people too? Man, I'm hugely jealous. Makes me wish I was a kid again.

Sorry - not much of advise other than trust your heart. Do what feels right now - don't worry about tomorrow because you never know what will happen/change between now and then. Both options seem like great opportunities to pursue your passion and if you keep approaching it with the positivity - you'll accomplish great things. Good luck.
 

Wavelength

Platinum Member
When you're practicing, you're learning to play the drums. When you're playing with people, you're learning to play music. Which one do you hold in a higher regard?
 

dkerwood

Silver Member
I'd really recommend college. Your eyes will be opened to styles and types of music that you had never even considered before. You will be pushed out of your comfort zone, and you'll be surrounded by guys who are also being pushed- and you'll push each other.

Woodshedding is great until you hit the limit of what you, your method books, and even a private teacher can teach you. In performing, you learn from every other person in the group. I've learned more from performing with people in college than I ever have in a practice room. Heck, I learned jazz drumming simply by listening to people play in college jazz band (I was a drummer through high school, then chose bass as a major because there are far fewer good bassists than good drummers out there).

If you love to practice, fantastic. Pick up a practice pad set, and you can still practice as much as you want. Many colleges have a percussion rehearsal room that you can book, and as long as you don't mind taking early morning or late night times, you can still get in your long hours of practice. For the difficulty of music you'll be exposed to, you'll need those long hours of practice.

In the end, I think college would be a far better choice for you. Plus, you'll come out with a degree when you're done, which is useful if you're not yet a professional drummer by college's end.
 
J

jay norem

Guest
By all means, get out there and study music. It's a way of life, all of it. You'll always be playing with people, always be studying music and you'll always find the time to practice, for the rest of your life if you decide that this is how you want to live. Now is the time to start. I say go to school, get your chops up, use your time there to do it all and earn that jazz degree. You'll never regret it.
 

oops

Silver Member
A Melbourne Muso told me that most musicians (who study professionally) don't put in the long hours of practice until after Uni.

I'd take this time to study, meet people, keep practicing as much as possible... When you've got your degree you can take time to practice 8 hours a day. You won't have as much time as you want to practice while studying, but thats ok.
 

oops

Silver Member
To be honest... I can't remember. I was talking to one of my classmates about it.

Might have been Steve Magnusson (guitarist) or someone similar. I had a feeling it was a VCA alumnus, and a guitarist. If I remember I'll let you know...

also... clear your PMs. Trying to send you something.
 

Latin Groover

Pioneer Member
To be honest... I can't remember. I was talking to one of my classmates about it.

Might have been Steve Magnusson (guitarist) or someone similar. I had a feeling it was a VCA alumnus, and a guitarist. If I remember I'll let you know...

also... clear your PMs. Trying to send you something.
I've cleared it up a bit...nothing maybe try again? And yea understandable though, I'm more popular than Joey Jordison at metal concert.
 

rogue_drummer

Gold Member
My two cents: practice 2 - 3 hours a day and jam and play with other musicians as much as you can at the college/university level. As someone posted earlier, when you are playing with other musicians, you ARE practicing and learning to play music with other like minded individuals. If you simply practice all day long, you are just practicing, not playing or performing with others and really learning various musical styles and how drums fit into variouis art forms. And when you play with other musicans, you are Networking and advertising your talent. You may know these folks, but you never know who they know and you never know their contacts. Plus seeking a University or college degree is very positive and admirable; you'll use this knowledge the rest of your life.

Can you make it without a college or university degree? Sure. Many people have and have been very successful. A degree will give you a certain amount of credibility, will certainly give you an education in whatever major / minor you choose, and will provide you opportunities and open doors for you whereas not having one may not. - Just my 2 cents worth....
 
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