|A metronome is an essential tool for productive practicing.
First, it is important to play with a steady tempo.
It is hard to tell if you are slowing down or speeding up when you are concentrating on playing notes, staying in tune, keeping your throat open, and all those other important elements of flute playing.
Secondly, a metronome is a great tool for learning technical passages.
Start by playing at a tempo slow enough that you can play the notes comfortably.
Then gradually move the metronome faster and faster.
||Metronomes used to be wind-up tick-tocks with a pendulum-style arm that moved back and forth.|
|Now the most common version is the size of a cell phone and runs on batteries.
They are handy to put in your flute case, bag, purse, or pocket.
These are the most affordable as well, usually under $25.00.
There are some that plug into the wall. You don't have to worry about batteries with these, but finding a handy outlet can be a nuisance.
Short on cash? Fire up an online metronome you can play through your computer.
Combination metronomes/digital tuners are very space efficient.
Seiko metronomes are a great choice from a company well known for fine watches.
Students frequently rebel against using a metronome.
"They mess me up," they frequently say.
To this I would like to say, "No, you are already messed up. The metronome is just pointing it out to you."
However, I usually don't.
World-renowned flutist, James Galway, never goes anywhere without his metronome. He often brings two or three with him to his performance venues.
So if it's good enough for Jimmy, then the rest of us definitely need one!
You can down load a free on-line metronome here.
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