Summary, Episode 9:
In this listener Q & A episode, my guitar student Frank asks about how to stay calm and overcome nervousness and panic while performing solo guitar on stage.
I share my 15 best tips for staying calm, focused and relaxed.
1 – 7: “Practical” points. These points address preparation as opposed to dealing with the actual feeling of panic in the moment.
8 – 15: “Mental Game” points. These address how to deal with the moments onstage when the critical, negative voice enters, your heart starts beating and maybe even hands shake.
Plus 2 in the moment additional tips actually make it 17 tips. 🙂
- 0:57 The question about nerves and performance – in Frank’s own words.
- 3:29: Being happy and at peace with your tone.
- 5:26: Having your rhythm and groove feel good – before you start playing.
- 7:04: Learning the Sound of your pickup.
- 8:14: Be sure you are in “stage 4 learning”…your body knows the piece of music.
- 11:30: Importance of slow practice. I still practice my concert tunes slowly…
- 11:57: Learning the difference between practice environment & stage environment.
- 13:37: When you know what people hear, you can forgive yourself…what do they hear? Flow, groove & melody.
- 18:27: Nervousness is a displaced reptile brain reaction, as if you are going to die.
- 19:30: Using meditation to overcome the inner critic & beating yourself up.
- 21:34: Know and feel that the audience is there to suport you.
- 23:18: “Meta” things like groove and tone are more important than small mistakes.
- 24:16: Know your music theory…playing just fingerings will make you nervous.
- 25:43: Breathe on stage! Does wonders for the physiology.
- 26:16: Play light, if your touch is getting heavy.
- 20:20: Get backstage and warm up before you go on.
- 28:40: Keep smiling do not visibly dissaprove of yourself & a personal story…
- 31:02: Your opening song on stage should be “bulletproof”, something you can play with zero thinking.