The Practice of Practice by Jonathan Harnum

The secrets of effective music practice from world-class professionals from all types of music.

The practice of practice

Talent means nothing when it comes to getting better. Practice is everything. But exactly what is good practice? How does good practice create talent? And what in the world does a pinwheel have to do with practice? The focus of this book is music practice, but these techniques and mindsets can be applied to any skill you want to improve.

This book covers essential practice strategies and mindsets you won’t find in any other book. You’ll learn the What, Why, When, Where, Who, and especially the How of great music practice. You’ll learn what research tells us about practice, but more importantly, you’ll learn how great musicians in many genres of music think about practice, and you’ll learn the strategies and techniques they use to improve. This book will help you get better faster, whether you play rock, Bach, or any other kind of music.

Whatever instrument you want to play, The Practice of Practice will help you get the most out of your practice. This book will help you become more savvy about getting better. It will also help you be a more informed teacher or a more effective parent of a young learner. Don’t practice longer, practice smarter.

The book has 6 sections covering the details of good practice:

What: Definitions, and what music practice does to your brain.

Why: Motivation is crucial. Learn ways of keeping the flame lit in this section

Who: A lot of people including yourself will impact your practice. Learn to use them to your advantage.

When: This section covers how much, and what times of the day are best for practice. Also covers the development of practice over time.

Where: Where you practice affects how well you practice. Learn to harness the place of your practice.

How: The longest section of the book includes information about goals, structuring your practice, as well as specific techniques tested by researchers, and specific strategies pros use to get better.

Get better faster. Don’t practice longer, practice smarter.

Genre: MUSIC / Instruction & Study / General

Secondary Genre: EDUCATION / General

Language: English

Keywords: practice, music practice, music, how to practice music, New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, djembe, kora, jazz music, singer-songwriter, tabla, indian classical music

Word Count: 274 pages, 5 x 0.7 x 8 inches

Sales info:

82 Amazon reviews at 4.8 stars (review links)

frequent #1 best-seller in its category (music instruction and study) on in the US (pic)

+2,000 audiobooks sold in the past year (116 ratings, 4.7 stars)



Sample text:

see formatted example, including TOC, the first two chapters, section headings, and more at this link.

chapter 1: The Chicken  or the Embryo

Zing-Yang Kuo rubbed warm Vaseline over a clutch of fertilized chicken eggs. He was conducting research that examined the role genetic memory—or instinct—played in the pecking behavior of chickens. You could say Zing-Yang Kuo was investigating a young chick’s “talent” for pecking.

Kuo was a developmental psychologist active in the first half of the 20th century who investigated the role of nature-versus-nurture in animal behaviors. Kuo believed that labeling behaviors as instinctie or genetic blinded us to the developmental realities that he suspected lay behind those behaviors. In the early 1920s when Kuo published his research, may believed the distinctive pecking behavior of newly hatched chickens was an instinct, a behavior enoded in chickeny genetics. Zing-Yang Kuo discoveed that a chick's ability to peck is a result of amuch more interesting process, one that smudges the line between nature and nurture.

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Book translation status:

The book is available for translation into any language except those listed below:

Already translated. Translated by Stefania Cipro and Eleonora Baldari
Translation in progress. Translated by Makoto Yamamoto
Already translated. Translated by M. Celeste Espina
Author review:
Not only di M. Celeste Espina bring her translating acumen to this project, she also brought her knowledge of music, and that made a big difference in the quality of this translation, which is superb. She also mastered the not-so-easy task of formatting a tricky document in Word, which I've found to be one of the skills lacking in other translators on this platform. Celeste is quick to communicate and does excellent work very quickly. I'll definitely be seeking her expertise for future projects.

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